Ford Designs a Modernized Logo for a New Age Mach 1

Just a few weeks ago, Ford unveiled the 2021 Mustang Mach 1 to the world, complete with bold styling making its bloodlines obvious. While we wait for the newest Mustang to hit dealerships (and racetracks) everywhere,  here’s Ford’s explanation on how a design team worked to modernize the classic Mach 1 logo.

The 2003 Mach 1 logo (left) isn't too different from the 2021 Mach 1 logo (right) — but there is definitely a more modern quality to it.

“From a brand standpoint, that vintage Mach 1 logo has such a classic look, there was a lot that we didn’t want to lose,” said Mahoney. “The unique letters, the outline – it was important to keep those features. What we did do is make it more modern, which really suits the new car.”

Ford design manager Dave Mahoney and his team of graphic engineers studied the interior and exterior of the new pony car to draw inspiration for the logo. While the logo might not seem like a huge deal from the consumers’ perspective, it’s important to note that this emblem graces the car’s hood stripe, front fenders, rear appliqué, strut tower brace under-hood, door sills, digital instrument cluster, center stack touch screen, and etched dash badge with vehicle ID number. In other words, it’s everywhere. The result of the team’s efforts is an updated and bolder sans-serif font for a more modern look, with the iconic lowercase “h” seen on earlier Mach 1s.

“When a nameplate like a Mach 1 comes back, you need to play up the heritage, but we didn’t want this to be a retro badge,” said Dean Carbis, Ford chief designer. “We wanted it to be modern, while still calling back to the original. I think the team nailed it.”

About the author

Stephanie Davies-Bardekoff

Stephanie Davies-Bardekoff got her start in automotive media while attending Rutgers. She worked for Roush Performance for a while, before eventually landing here at Power Automedia. Her Coyote-swapped 1992 Fox-body drag car is her prized possession.
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