100 hundred years ago, Ford Motor Company purchased Lincoln Motor Company. However, while the luxury brand has been looking ahead to its future of an all-electric vehicle lineup, it certainly hasn’t turned its back on its past. Recently, Lincoln tipped its hat to its rich history, outlining how its insignia has evolved throughout the years. As it turns out, there have been quite a few iterations of the Lincoln star over the course of the last 100 years.
Edsel Ford, son of Henry Ford, took the helm of Lincoln in 1922. This Lincoln crest is a far cry from the modern version, appearing as a shield without a star in sight.
The logo took a different turn in 1925, featuring the signature Ford script and “LINCOLN” in bold letters. This logo would be affixed to the front of Lincoln vehicles for the next 16 years.
Just before World War II, the logo changed yet again, incorporating a shield and knight motif with the first true Lincoln star. The brand’s name was taken off the logo.
Lincoln halted regular vehicle production on January 30th, 1942, and began producing engines, bodies, vehicles and parts in order to support the U.S. along with its allies as World War II raged in Europe.
With the war in the rearview, Lincoln once again began producing luxury vehicles in 1945. Color returned to its logo as well, although the knight and shield remained.
The Lincoln badge was once again amended, losing its color for a cell shaded appearance.
Lincoln’s insignia veered away from tradition in 1956, retaining the knight helmet motif but incorporating long chrome “wings” branching out from either side. A notable vehicle from this year was the Lincoln Continental Mark II. Elvis Presley and Elizabeth Taylor each owned one.
The luxury brand moved away from the knight logo in 1957, instead using an eight-point star to represent Lincoln products.
The eight-point Lincoln star received a nip and tuck for 1958.
In 1960, Lincoln once again overhauled its logo, this time taking on a familiar four-point star within a stylized rectangle, marking the first time a modern Lincoln star was used on production vehicles.
The 1961 Lincoln Continental redefined the luxury brand’s styling, and the logo was emblazoned in gold.
The four-point chrome Lincoln star prevailed.
The points of the Lincoln star were brought in a bit in the 1980s, no longer extending far past the bounds of the rectangle.
Lincoln refined the star logo once again, this time by shrinking the sides of the bounding rectangle and extending its height, setting the tone of the logo for decades.
As with the 1968 logo, the Lincoln star took on a chromed appearance with a significant bezel.
Lincoln “flattened” the star in 2001, removing the bezel and giving it a two-dimensional appearance.
Returning to a three-dimensional design, the Lincoln once again embellished the insignia with a chrome finish.
Lincoln reverted to the flat stat logo for 2004.
Lincoln stretched and thinned the logo even further, and the star’s four points extended slightly beyond the rectangle bounds.
The logo was once again given a significant bezel and chrome treatment, giving it a three-dimensional look.
That didn’t last long – the Lincoln star was flattened yet again.
The Lincoln star was given a rounder, smoother look, and the points of the star were drawn within the bounds of the rectangle.
Yet again, the Lincoln star was stripped of its three-dimensional elements, and made to appear cleaner and flat. This shift occurred in conjunction with Ford’s announcement that Lincoln would be its only luxury brand moving forward.
2018 – Present
The logo hasn’t changed much since its shift in 2018, but note that its simple design creates excellent contrast against a dark or light background. As Lincoln marches forward into a future of all-electric vehicles by 2030, a simple, easily communicable logo is a key design element, especially if it wishes to illuminate said logo on the grille of its upcoming EVs.