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History of the logo

Bicycles, motorcycles and cars

Václav Laurin, a mechanic, and Václav Klement, a bookseller – both of whom were enthusiastic cyclists, began making their own bicycles in December 1895.

Due to a tense political era and a strong sense of patriotism at the end of the 19th century, they named their company Slavia. Beginning in 1899, they began producing motorcycles under the name Laurin & Klement.

At the turn of the century, Laurin and Klement moved to manufacturing cars. The first mass produced car– the L&K Voiturette A - was made in 1905.

PLAY
Logo 1895

1895

1905

The first logo of the L&K Company with lime tree elements symbolizing Slavic nations.

It was used on bicycles and motorcycles of the Slavia brand.

Example - bike
Logo 1905

1905

1911

This logo was used on the side of Slavia motorcycles‘fuel tanks.

Example - Motorbike
Logo 1905

1905

1925

This round logo with the L&K initials surrounded by a laurel wreath was inspired by art nouveau.

It decorated the top of the Laurin & Klement automobile radiators.

Example - Car 1920
Logo 1925

1925

1995

The famous winged arrow has adorned the cars made in Mladá Boleslav for almost a century.

Its origin is veiled in mystery and is a source of many legends.

Example - Car
Logo 1995

1995

2011

The ŠKODA AUTO logo is perceived as one of the most original and stylistically pure in the world.

Example - Octavia
Logo 2011

2011

2015

The winged arrow is much larger and more prominent in the latest version.

Example - Superb
Logo 2016

2016

NOW

One significant change concerns the wordmark, which moves underneath the picturemark with the winged arrow in a chrome ring.

Example - Kodiaq

Where did the legendary winged arrow come from?

The inspiration

The commercial director of ŠKODA at the time,Tomáš Maglič, is considered the author of the idea.

A picture portraying a Native American decorating the ŠKODA Plzeň management office around the years 1918-1919 was likely his inspiration.

The visual trademarks

Two variants of the trademark were registered with the Office of Trademark and Design in Plzeň on December 15th, 1923.

The first variant, used in 1924 and 1925, was a winged arrow with a five-feathered stylized wing in a circle with the word ŠKODA.

The second variant showed a three-feathered winged arrow in a circle. The arrow in both variants pointed to the right. This stylistically perfect variant won and has not been significantly changed since.

The author

While it is clear that the design was not the work of an amateur, the author of the ŠKODA logo is not known. First class Czech sculptors Otto Gutfreund or Otakar Spaniel are rumoured to have been the authors.

Much of the historical evidence suggests, however, that the logo was probably the outcome of a competition called by the technical director of the ŠKODA headquarters in Prague, Dr. Ing. Sýkora, who also initiated the registration of the trademark.

The logo with the famous winged arrow first appeared on automobiles from Mladá Boleslav in 1926.

Merger in 1925

The continuity in logotype use

Automobiles have been made in Mladá Boleslav under the brand ŠKODA since 1926.

Even though the company name changed completely, the new logo shares many similarities with the older one.

Logo 1905

1905

1925

The round logo is firmly connected with the Laurin & Klement brand. It decorated the top of the radiator.

Logo 1913

1913

1929

The word trademark Laurin & Klement first appeared in 1913.

A round L&K logo appeared on the radiators and from 1925 the ŠKODA oval was used.

Logo 1925

1925

1934

This logo was used only on car radiators.

Cars produced during the L&K era bore the trademark Laurin & Klement on the radiator until 1929.

Logo 1925

1925

1995

This logo was created in ŠKODA Plzeň and the Mladá Boleslav factory adopted it in 1925.

It was used on automobiles until 1995 and on printed materials until 1992/93.

Even today, it is used on individual components such as the windshield or engine parts.

The meaning of the fundamental logo elements

The wing

Technical advancement, manufacturing scope, worldwide sale of products.

The large circle

Manufacturing versatility, perfection of production, the world, the Earth.

The circle, eye

Manufacturing precision, high level of technical development, innovation.

The arrow

Progressive production methods, high productivity.

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The forward-aiming arrow

On fenders, hubcaps, hoods – wherever it was possible for the arrow to point forward.

Škoda MBX
Logo L&K

The laurel wreath

The design of the original Laurin & Klement logo with the founders‘initials was influenced by art nouveau at the beginning of the 20th century.

The logo is decorated by a laurel wreath, which has always been connected with fame and victory. It was likely used due to the similarity between the name Václav Laurin and the Latin name for laurel, Laurus Nobilis.

Logo Škoda

Colours

1925

1995

Blue, metallic, silver

Škoda - logo

The basis of the logo was metal, and so silver (metallic) and blue were used.

Škoda - logo

As required by circumstances, inverted colours were used.

50s AND 60s

Red

Škoda - logo

The logo was sometimes used in red in the 50s and 60s, also inverted if needed.

1993

1994

Green

Škoda - logo

The first modification of the ŠKODA logo. The blue was replaced with green and a new circle with the company name was added.

1994

2011

Black and green

Škoda - logo

The black and green logo gave ŠKODA a large measure of originality – black symbolizes the century-long tradition of the company and green indicates ecological friendliness.

Printed materials

Different logos for cars and for printed materials were used in the past. There were no exact rules for using the logo until 1994 and, therefore, there were many variants. The first corporate identity manual was created in 1994 along with the FELICIA model.

L&K Slavia

1895 - 1905

World fact: A French company called Michelin presented the first automobile fitted with tires in 1895.

L&K Slavia
Detail

L&K CCD

1904 - 1910

World fact: Albert Einstein published four articles that became the basis of modern physics in 1905.

L&K CCD
Detail

L&K VOITURETTE A

1905 - 1907

World fact: German inventor Alfred Wilm discovered dural, a new alloy in 1906.

L&K VOITURETTE A
Detail

L&K S

1911 - 1924

World fact: Roland Amundsen's expedition reached the South Pole in 1911.

L&K S
Detail

L&K ŠKODA 110

1925 - 1929

World fact: An International Exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts, introducing art deco and modular architecture took place in Paris in 1925.

L&K ŠKODA 110
Detail

ŠKODA 860

1929 - 1933

World fact: The Wall Street Crash on Black Tuesday started the Great Depression in 1929.

ŠKODA 860
Detail

ŠKODA RAPID II. CABRIO DE LUXE

1935 - 1947

World fact: BBC Radio started a regular broadcasting schedule in 1936.

ŠKODA RAPID II. CABRIO DE LUXE
Detail

ŠKODA SUBERB 4000

1939 - 1941

World fact: Germany and Japan surrendered in 1945, ending World War II.

ŠKODA SUBERB 4000
Detail

ŠKODA 1101 "TUDOR"

1946 - 1952

World fact: The first United Nations General Assembly took place in London in 1946.

ŠKODA 1101 "TUDOR"
Detail

ŠKODA 440 "SPARTAK"

1955 - 1959

World fact: The first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, was commissioned in 1955.

ŠKODA 440 "SPARTAK"
Detail

ŠKODA 1201 STW

1955 - 1961

World fact: Elvis Presley rose to fame in 1956.

ŠKODA 1201 STW
Detail

ŠKODA OCTAVIA

1959 - 1964

World fact: American scientist Gordon Gould patented a technology called the LASER in 1959.

ŠKODA OCTAVIA
Detail

ŠKODA FELICIA

1959 - 1964

World fact: The Soviet probe Luna 3 took photos of the dark side of the Moon in 1959.

ŠKODA FELICIA
Detail

ŠKODA 1000 MB

1964 - 1969

World fact: The height of Beatlemania. The film comedy A Hard Day's Night premiered in 1964.

ŠKODA 1000 MB
Detail

ŠKODA 1203

1968 - 1981

World fact: The "Prague Spring" and the occupation of Czechoslovakia by the Warsaw Pact forced in 1968.

ŠKODA 1203
Detail

ŠKODA 110 R COUPE

1970 - 1980

World fact: A pocket calculator was introduced by Texas Instruments in 1971.

ŠKODA 110 R COUPE
Detail

ŠKODA 110 SUPER SPORT "FERAT"

1971 - 1981

World fact: A personal computer called IBM PC was introduced in 1981.

ŠKODA 110 SUPER SPORT "FERAT"
Detail

ŠKODA 180/200 RS

1974 - 1975

World fact: A barcode was used for the first time in US retail business in 1974.

ŠKODA 180/200 RS
Detail

ŠKODA 130 RS

1975 - 1980

World fact: The first Star Wars movie by George Lucas premiered in 1977.

ŠKODA 130 RS
Detail

ŠKODA 120

1976 - 1990

World fact: A supersonic passenger jet Concorde began a regular flight schedule in 1976.

ŠKODA 120
Detail

ŠKODA FAVORIT

1987 - 1994

World fact: The fall of the Berlin Wall and the Communist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe was in 1989.

ŠKODA FAVORIT
Detail

ŠKODA FELICIA

1994 - 2001

World fact: The La Manche tunnel, connecting the UK with continental Europe was opened in 1994.

ŠKODA FELICIA
Detail

ŠKODA OCTAVIA I

1996 - 2003

World fact: Toy Story, the first computer animated movie, premiered in 1996.

ŠKODA OCTAVIA I
Detail

ŠKODA OCTAVIA WRC

1999 - 2002

World fact: Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones traveled around the world for the first time in a hot air balloon in 1999.

ŠKODA OCTAVIA WRC
Detail

ŠKODA FABIA I

1999 - 2007

World fact: The Euro became a legal tender in the Eurozone countries in 1999.

ŠKODA FABIA I
Detail

ŠKODA SUPERB I

2001 - 2008

World fact: First draft of the complete human genome is published in the journal "Nature" in 2001.

ŠKODA SUPERB I
Detail

ŠKODA YETI

2009 - 2017

World fact: Smartphone apps has become mainstream in personal computing since 2009.

ŠKODA YETI
Detail

ŠKODA FABIA SUPER 2000

2009 - 2014

World fact: Nearly half of the world's population has used a cell phone and pre-paid mobile operator services since 2009.

ŠKODA FABIA SUPER 2000
Detail

ŠKODA RAPID

2012 - present

World fact: Most of the United States adopted laws regulating the testing of autonomous vehicles in 2012.

ŠKODA RAPID
Detail

ŠKODA OCTAVIA III

2013 - present

World fact: Astronomers discovered the thousandth exoplanet in 2013.

ŠKODA OCTAVIA III
Detail

ŠKODA FABIA III

2014 - present

World fact: The Oculus Rift virtual reality headset has been available for developers since 2014.

ŠKODA FABIA III
Detail

ŠKODA SUPERB III

2015 - present

World fact: 3D printing became a stronger trend in, for example, manufacturing spare parts in 2015.

ŠKODA SUPERB III
Detail

ŠKODA KODIAQ

2016 - present

World fact: Electric cars became more widely available and affordable in 2017.

ŠKODA KODIAQ
Detail

ŠKODA KAROQ

2017 - present

ŠKODA KAROQ
Detail
All vehicles
  • 1895
  • 1904
  • 1905
  • 1911
  • 1925
  • 1929
  • 1935
  • 1935
  • 1939
  • 1946
  • 1955
  • 1955
  • 1959
  • 1959
  • 1964
  • 1968
  • 1970
  • 1971
  • 1974
  • 1975
  • 1976
  • 1987
  • 1994
  • 1996
  • 1999
  • 1999
  • 2001
  • 2009
  • 2009
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
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Model timeline

In 1895, Mr. Laurin and Mr. Klement found a factory for production of the Slavia bicycle. In 1905 the first car from the Laurin & Klement company is introduced. It is a small two-seat vehicle with 7 horsepower called the Voiturette A.

The manufacture of automobiles grows quickly. In 1907 the small factory becomes a joint-stock company. Thanks to good business connections, cars from Mladá Boleslav make their way, among other countries, to New Zealand, Russia, England and Japan.

Car manufacturing is strongly affected by the World War I. The production of personal vehicles is almost stopped, and instead military vehicles are being made. In 1924 the factory was partially destroyed by a large fire, which led to the company merger with the engineering giant from Plzeň, ŠKODA.

After the company merger, the factory is enlarged and equipped with modern line production. In 1930 the factory is struggling with the world-wide economic crisis and introduces to production a car with an entirely new concept - the ŠKODA 418 POPULAR becomes the basis for individual production lines.

In 1936 the car company is in first place among domestic automobile manufacturers and positive reactions are coming from other countries. With the coming of the World War II and occupation, production focuses on the needs of Germany. The factory is bombed near the end of the war.

After the war, Czechoslovakian economic activities are affected by the nationalization process. The branch factories in Kvasiny and Vrchlabi become a part of the company. The socialist era begins, which completely changes the direction of the Czechoslovakian automobile industry.

The 1950s belong to the ŠKODA FELICIA, for which the demand was much higher than the production capacity. At the beginning of the 1960s, the factory undergoes an extensive modernization, and in 1964 the production line rolls out the all new ŠKODA 1000 MB.

Production of the leading model, the ŠKODA 1000 MB, and its derivatives, continues in full swing. This is the first model in the history of the company with more than one million pieces produced.

Production of the ŠKODA 110 R sport coupé is stopped in Kvasiny in 1980, and the next year production of the ŠKODA GARDE begins, which is later renamed to ŠKODA RAPID. Once again, the company is making a sporty two-door coupé.

In 1987, the long-awaited and all-new model, the ŠKODA FAVORIT, goes to production. In March, 1991 the company begins a partnership with Volkswagen. Even the company name is new - ŠKODA, joint-stock automotive company.

In April, 1996, the all-new model, the ŠKODA OCTAVIA is introduced. One year later comes the ŠKODA FABIA, and in 2001 a new luxury limousine in the upper-middle class is introduced, the ŠKODA SUPERB. Production facilities are built in Russia, China and India.

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