Volkswagen has revealed its new “clearer and simpler” logo, which the Wolfsburg-based firm says is the “start of a new era” for the brand.

The new VW logo features a two-dimensional design, with the automaker saying its insignia has been “reduced to its essential elements”. The logo is expected to be illuminated on the vehicle, at the brand locations and at the dealerships.

VW says the new design will allow “more flexible use” and will be “outstandingly recognisable” in digital media. While the previous logo was blue and white, the redesigned version features a new blue tone.

Initially, the brand’s locations and dealers in Europe will be changed over, followed by China in October. The changeover will then be implemented step-by-step in North and South America as well as the rest of the world from the beginning of 2020, before being completed half way through that year.

Volkswagen claims its rebranding is one of the largest projects of this type in the industry. All in all, 171 markets in 154 countries will be impacted. At the 10 000 facilities of dealers and service partners throughout the world, about 70 000 logos will be replaced.

“The new brand design marks the start of the new era for Volkswagen,” says Jürgen Stackmann, member of the brand board of management responsible for sales, marketing and after sales.

“By formulating new content and with new products, the brand is undergoing a fundamental transformation towards a future with a neutral emission balance for everyone. Now is the right time to make the new attitude of our brand visible to the outside world.”

Interestingly, VW will switch to a female voice when presenting its vehicles and for advertising purposes (in “almost all markets”).