Dear Car Designers: Badges Are Always Better In Color

We know Americans, as a marketing demographic, like chrome. There’s nothing wrong with a little chrome here and there, it makes stuff brighter. But all over your wheels? No. All over the badges on your car? Well, at least it’s better than gold.

One look at the new Buick Riviera Concept shows GM still remembers Buick’s history and has an interest in rehashing it, at least in China. I, for one, welcome a production version of a new Riviera. Hell, even if it’s a rebadged Opel Cascada.

But the aspect of the Riv’ concept I’ve been focusing most on is the front, specifically, the Buick badge on the front.

Dear Car Designers: Badges Are Always Better In Color

For the last few years, Buick’s been using a monochromatic version of its tri-shield emblem used for the better part of its last 50 years. It’s tasteful and restrained for sure, but it doesn’t look nearly as good as the classed-up, colorful logo the Chinese market gets. It’s colored in red, white and blue, so why shouldn’t this version be on American-market cars? Come on, Buick.

After thinking about it, car badges are just better when they come in colors. Mitsubishi used to show some flash with its red diamonds before they switched to chrome diamonds on the cars in the 2000s, coinciding with their diminishing fortunes in this country. I see a correlation.

Audi has long used the four chrome rings on the front of its cars, but what about the colored oval with “Audi” written in it on the sides of its cars? Hey, it adds a little pizzaz to cars that basically look like remarkably similar to each other.

Could you imagine an Alfa Romeo badge in all chrome? Or a BMW propeller logo without the blue, even if it’s peeling off after a few years? Tell us what are your favorite colorful badges and which all-chrome ones need more color. Because it just brightens everything up.

Photo credit General Motors