Eurostile is a geometric sans-serif typeface designed in 1962 by Turin-based Italian type designer Aldo Novarese. The font was created for the Nebiolo Font Foundry, one of Italy’s most renowned font foundries.
The main inspiration behind developing Eurostile was to have a typeface that would succeed Microgramma, another popular font that Novarese helped design. Microgramma was a famous titling typeface that only came in UPPERCASE letters. However, the font was available in a variety of weights, styles, and designs.
The fact that Microgramma was only available in UPPERCASE letters made it a highly limited typeface. That’s despite there being various weights of the font. Therefore, Novarese decided to address this glaring drawback by creating the more versatile Eurostile.
The new font not only incorporated lowercase letters in addition to Microgramma’s UPPERCASE-only characters. It also included several other options, including a bold condensed variant and an ultra-narrow design that Novarese christened the Eurostile Compact.
These changes positioned Eurostile not only as one of the go-to typefaces of the early 60s but also as a futuristic font. And while the typeface has experienced an eclipse in popularity over the years, it remains one of the most recognized fonts today.
As with any sans-serif font, Eurostile lacks the serifs (extending features at the end of letter strokes). This may seem like a drawback, particularly for designers looking for a font with more stroke width variation.
However, the apparent lack of serifs makes Eurostile a great font where the idea is to keep the lettering or logo clean and neat. Road signage, store signage, and document heading are just some of the many design areas where the Eurostile font would look exceptionally great.
The Eurostile font also has a linear nature that resonates with modern architecture. That makes it perfect for use as the main font on the lettering of architectural designs.
Eurostile also has distinctive squarish shapes and round corners, a feature incorporated to evoke the shape of the television screens of the 1950s and 60s. The font is widely used in science fiction artwork, movies, and television series set or produced from the 60s through the 70s.
In fact, Eurostile and its predecessor Microgramma enjoyed a near-monopoly as the ideal typefaces for sci-fi movies until the end of the 20th century. The fonts’ successful run in the sci-fi world was disrupted by designers like Ray Larabie who came up with more computer-friendly typefaces.
The following are notable examples of Eurostile applications:
• As the corporate branding font for Toshiba, Diadora, and Dimension Films
• As the main font for the cover of the films 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), The Andromeda Strain (1971), and Jetsons: The Movie (1990).
• In the video games Ridge Racer, Splinter Cell, and Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon