A Brief History of the Corvette Emblem

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While the Corvette emblem has changed with each new generation of Corvette, there is one mainstay that holds true: the crossed flags design sporting the checkered finish line flag. The original logo was designed in 1953 for the premiere of the first Corvette.

Original Logo

The original Corvette logo was designed in 1953 by Robert Bartholomew. It expressed the crossed flags of the American flag and a finish line flag. The Chevrolet name was curved across the top of the emblem and the Corvette name was in script in a bottom arch. Though the emblem has changed over the years, this is the basic design it has always come back to. The original logo is on display at the National Corvette Museum. Unfortunately, four days before the presentation of the Corvette, at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, Chevrolet management decided they should redesign the logo on account of the law prohibiting the use of the American flag for use in a commercial product.

Fleur de Lis

The Fleur de Lis symbol was used for a short time in 1953 on the preview model and was only used on the models used for press conferences and trade shows. This was traded out for the original logo when the car went into production. The thought behind this emblem was to express the French background of the brand, through it’s namesake Chevrolet. While, the origin of the name is French, they actually found no real French connection in the family history. Needless to say, the emblem wasn’t a big hit and was changed for American consumers.

The Sixties & Seventies

This era saw a bit of a change in the emblem. This is when the Chevrolet flag appeared in the same crossed flags design with the checkered finish line flag. The Chevrolet flag premiered in a bright red color. The structure of this emblem also showed the flags “waving” in a much more dramatic design than previous and more current flags.

Mainstay Logo

Though the Corvette logo saw some changes, the mainstay logo that continues to prevail is the crossed flags. In 1997 the new emblem premiered with the classic style. The crossed checkered finish line flag was partnered with a custom Chevrolet flag as the forefront to a medium thickness circle. 

The history of the Corvette emblem shows the creativity and detail that went into the making of this legendary sports car. As the model changed, so too did the overall branding. As with all new ventures, it took some trial and error to work out the details of how the emblem would fit with the overall look of the car.

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