Cadillac is famous for its revolutionary automobile technology. The company pioneered the use of high-precision repetition engineering in vehicles. This technology essentially meant that car parts were now interchangeable.
Before the introduction of high-precision repetition engineering technology, cars typically came with parts that were designed, hand-finished, and fitted to work in specific areas of the vehicle.
Cadillac is also a trailblazer in the use of electrical systems, as well as the development of three engines, including the famous V8.
But Cadillac isn’t famous only for its continued introduction of cutting-edge automotive technology. The company has also treated car enthusiasts to amazing logos throughout its existence.
Below is a brief introduction of this iconic automaker, followed by a comprehensive analysis of its current and past emblems.
The Cadillac Motor Car Division, more popularly known simply as Cadillac, is a division of the American auto marque General Motors Company (GM). Cadillac was founded on August 22, 1902, in Detroit, Michigan, by William Murphy, Lemuel Bowen, and Henry M. Leland. The company became a division of General Motors on July 29, 1909.
Cadillac is famous for its design and manufacture of luxury automobiles. The company is presently headquartered in Warren, Michigan. However, its products are available worldwide, with the United States, Canada, and China (excluding Hong Kong and Macau) constituting its core markets.
Other notable countries where Cadillac avails its automobiles include Mexico, Europe, the Middle East (excluding Iran and Syria), Japan, and South Korea. To know more about this luxury automobile brand, visit their official website.
Cadillac Logo Appearance
Cadillac’s logo is aptly christened a ‘Wreath and Crest.’ The logo sports a sleek crest that features an array of bright and elegant colors. Until 2014, the colorful crest was executed inside a bold, shiny wreath.
Underneath the crest image is the automaker’s wordmark. The wordmark appears in the lowercase and is written in a cursive inscription. However, note that Cadillac’s logo doesn’t always appear with the company’s wordmark.
While the Cadillac logo is famously known as a Wreath and Crest, it’s the color scheme that stands out the most from the emblem. The badge features a vast array of colors, including black, blue, gold, silver, red, and white.
The “Cadillac” lettering appearing underneath the company’s Wreath and Crest badge is modeled after a font known as English 157.
English 157 is a playful typeface created by Vladimir Yefimov. The font is based on calligraphic handwriting styles. It was originally published by Bitstream Font Foundry. However, the font is currently licensed by ParaType.
This typeface is best suited for small text displays. It also creates stunning visual effects when applied to lowercase than UPPERCASE letters. That said, the font is available in both UPPERCASE and lowercase characters. Its character range also includes integers, basic punctuations, and other special symbols.
What’s more, English 157 supports over 90 languages. You can download the font from My Fonts, Linotype, and Font Shop, among others.
Cadillac Logo Meaning
Meaning of the Crest
Cadillac has used numerous designs for its logo throughout the company’s existence. However, nearly all these badges were based on the current crest image. The image was inspired by the family crest of Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, the founder of Detroit, Michigan, and Henry Leland’s ancestor.
Interestingly, Antoine Cadillac claimed that his family was descended from an old French royalty. Which means that the history of Cadillac’s coat of arms goes hundreds of years back, even before the discovery of America.
However, many believe that Antoine might have designed Cadillac’s logo by himself when he married in 1687. That’s especially considering that the design looked a lot similar to that of Antoine’s neighbor, Baron Sylvester of Esparbes de Lussan.
Regardless of how Cadillac’s logo came about, one thing is for sure; the crest design connotes royalty, power, aristocracy, excellence, and attention to detail.
Meaning of the Colors
All the colors used on Cadillac’s crest have their distinctive symbolism.
For instance, black stands for power and elegance, whereas white connotes purity and innocence. Silver and gold are associated with luxury and affluence, whereas blue represents health and the sky. Lastly, red symbolizes passion, courage, and energy.
Most of the qualities represented by Cadillac’s logo colors are also associated with the automaker’s vehicles. That said, the colors appearing on Cadillac’s crest are also tied to Antoine de la Mothe. De la Mothe’s family crest reportedly contained most of these colors.
Meaning of the Wordmark
Cadillac’s crest logo doesn’t always appear with the wordmark. But when it does, the main purpose of the lettering is to shift attention to the brand. Cadillac’s wordmark also immortalizes Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, the founder of the city of Detroit.
Cadillac Logo History
Cadillac’s debut logo emerged in 1902. The badge looked a lot like the crest of a royal family.
It comprised a silvery crown executed over (but not touching) a black crest containing 15 portions. Six segments of the crest (three to the upper left and three to the lower right) featured swimming ducks, with the remaining portions sporting vertical or horizontal lines.
Underneath the crest was the inscription “LA MOTHE CADILLAC,” while the entire design (crest plus crown) were surrounded by a wreath featuring a chain of petals. Cadillac’s original logo stayed with the company for three years. The logo has since been redesigned about 40 times.
The following is an evolution timeline of Cadillac’s logo, taking into account the most significant changes:
1905 – 1908
Cadillac’s second logo borrowed heavily from the first. The new design comprised a smaller circle set inside a larger circle that was surrounded by black elements. The smaller circle contained six ducks and some checkers, as well as a crown and floral elements.
1908 – 1914
Cadillac experimented with a simpler logo during this period. The badge featured a crown, crest, and the tagline “STANDARD OF THE WORLD.” The logo also appeared with the wordmark “CADILLAC” executed above the crown. However, the six swimming ducks and the crest remained.
1914 – 1915
Cadillac’s logo became even less sophisticated. It now featured the nameplate ‘Cadillac’ slanted upwards, underlined, and written in a decorative font. Below the nameplate was the tagline ‘Standard of the World.’
1915 – 1920
Designers came up with a new logo that mimicked the shape of Cadillac’s debut badge, but with several adjustments.
An octagonal frame replaced the flower wreath, whereas the crown was now in contact with the crest. Also, the crown and crest were set inside a double-framed circle that had the inscription “CADILLAC” to the top and “STANDARD OF THE WORLD” to the bottom.
The circler containing the crest, crown, and inscriptions was executed right at the center of the octagon.
1920 – 1925
This was more or less a modified version of the previous logo. The octagon became a thick-framed circle, whereas the crest and crown image became bigger and more legible. A wreath replaced the circle in the previous logo, while the inscriptions disappeared.
1933 – 1939
Cadillac used a winged emblem during this period. The logo maintained the company’s crest, along with the ducks and checkers. However, the crest now had broad wings complete with seven pommels.
1939 – 1957
In 1939, Cadillac unveiled a new logo that featured a crest and crown floating on water in an inverted acute angle.
In 1948, the sides of the acute angle in the previous logo were flattened to form what looked like a stretched letter V. The water-like image disappeared while the crown and crest (now cleaner and more legible) rested on top of the V shape.
Cadillac continued to redesign its logo over the next couple of years. Most of these iterations were based on the automaker’s original crest and wreath design, with subtle changes in the color scheme.
In 2014, the company unveiled its current logo. The badge appears without the wreath. Besides, the ducks and checkers were replaced by colored patterns.
Cadillac’s logo is relatively more complex compared to that of most automobiles. But it’s that very sophistication that makes the brand stand out.