The Evolution of the Toyota Logo Over the Years


The Toyota logo is instantly recognizable, but it has gone through several changes since the company's start in the 1930s. Join us as we explore the fascinating history behind the Toyota emblem.

1935 - The First Toyota Logo

In 1935, the newly founded Toyota company unveiled its first logo design. It featured the name "Toyoda" in katakana - the original family name of founder Kiichiro Toyoda. The logo had a geometric, art deco style popular in the 1930s. The iconic Toyota red and white color scheme was present from the beginning.

1949 - Bringing Good Luck

In 1949, the company changed the logo to "Toyota" using 8 strokes. Toyota with 8 strokes was considered lucky in Japanese culture. This new spelling launched Toyota onto the international stage. The logo design evolved to a red circle with Toyota spelled out in clean sans-serif typeface.

1969 - Sleek and Modern

Following trends of the late 1960s, Toyota refreshed their logo in 1969 with a more modern, streamlined wordmark. The letters became sans-serif in a rounded font, losing the circle background. This presented a contemporary, minimalist image.

1978 - Very Familiar

In 1978, Toyota rolled out a logo that looks very similar to today's version. It featured the bold TOYOTA name in capital letters, with modest updates to spacing and letter heights. This established the classic Toyota wordmark that continues today.

1989 - Introducing the Emblem

The first Toyota emblem debuted in 1989, adding an iconic visual symbol to the wordmark. It consisted of three overlapping ovals in a horizontally oriented shape. Originally red, the ovals provided a distinctive new element.

2006 - Simplified Style

A cleaner, silver version of the Toyota emblem arrived in 2006. The update made the individual ovals easier to recognize. This remains the standard logo 17 years later.

2019 - Refined Curves

Subtle contour changes were applied to the Toyota emblem in their most recent 2019 refresh. Smoother, more refined oval shapes helped convey sleekness and modernity.

2020 - Special Olympics Edition

In 2020, Toyota released a special edition of their logo in support of the Special Olympics. This version inverted the colors to feature red ovals on a white background.

2021 - New Model Teasers

Toyota teased upcoming new car models in 2021 using just a slice of the logo. These minimalist animations focused on a single oval and color.

2022 - Heritage Badge

A heritage badge logo was added in 2022 to celebrate Toyota's origins. It features the original Toyoda name and a classic crest shape.

2023 - Electric Shift

With new electric models like the bZ4X, Toyota introduced logos with italicized letters and light blue accents representing electrification.

What the Logo Represents

The Toyota logo seamlessly blends color, type, and symbolism. Red represents passion, power, and energy. White conveys innovation, purity, and class. Black signifies sophistication and strength. The overlapping ovals signify the trust between Toyota and customers. These elements brilliantly capture the Toyota brand story and spirit.

September 21, 2023
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