Perhaps the most iconic symbol of American motor culture is the Chevrolet emblem. The parade of classic cars that have been adorned with this logo over the years inspires nostalgia and pride, but what was the inspiration behind the actual “bowtie” emblem? The short answer is that it was William Durant’s design introduced in 1913 to the Chevrolet lineup. Where Durant received his inspiration is open to speculation.
The prevailing theory is that on one of his many travels, Durant saw a piece of wallpaper in Paris that used a repeating design that resembled what the Chevy logo is today. He tore a piece off and exuberantly showed friends how this design would look great on a car.
His own daughter wrote a book years later explaining how Durant would sometimes doodle on napkins around the family dinner table. One night between the soup and fried chicken he sketched the original Chevrolet bowtie emblem. Another possibility is that he found a similar design in an advert for coal from an Atlanta newspaper while on vacation in Hot Springs, Virginia.
William Durant’s muse may lack a definitive explanation, but his original bowtie logo is the same as ever and still represents the gold-standard of vehicles to this day. Come see one up-close-and-personal on our array of Chevrolet offerings at Reichard Chevrolet, today!