I was driving to work the other day, and there was an old Subaru in front of me at a stop light. And in the lane next to the old Subaru, there was a new Subaru. I noticed that they had different logos!
The current logo has an oval with a large star in the upper left and a pattern of five smaller starts on the right side.
The older logo had 5 of the 6 stars in the exact same place. However, the left-most little star was placed in a completely new location! In the current design, it is to the SE of the large star, but in the old logo, itâ€™s decidedly to the SW, and when you see the metal badge on the rear of the car, that little star actually sits on the oval!
Are you following me?
Anyway, I was wondering what caused the change of star location and when it happened? I can understand a completely redesigned logo, but they just moved one little star. What was wrong with it before?
To answer your first question: No, I’m not following you. If I was following you, you wouldn’t suspect it, since I have cat-like reflexes and ninja-like skills. In fact….LOOK BEHIND YOU! I’m not there. I’m over HERE! On the EAST COAST!
Now, to the Subaru question. The word “subaru” in Japan represents the constellation of the Pleiades – hence, the reason the stars are present in the logo at all. And you are correct – there is an “old” logo and a “new” logo. Here’s the old one:
And here’s the new logo:
Your description of the stars moving around is flawless – one star did make a massive shift in position from the bottom left to the bottom right. Why, you ask?
About 15 years ago, Fujitsu Heavy Industries (the parent company of Subaru) underwent a re-branding process. The old logo for that company was a red…thing. It looked a bit like a boomerang on its side. However, they wanted to make it clear that they owned Subaru, so they took the Subaru logo, re-designed it a bit, and then re-released it as the overarching logo. The reason they chose the logo in the first place was the fact that the company, when it formed in 1953, five smaller companies joined into one big company – hence the 5 little stars and one big star. By moving the little star on the bottom left over next to the other 4 stars on the bottom right, the company sacrifices a bit of astronomical accuracy for a clearer image of 5 small stars on one side, and the single large star on the other. It’s not like the old symbol was very accurate anyways; take a look at the Pleiades constellation some time – it’s close, but not quite accurate.
Hopefully this answers your question. I would like to acknowledge the assistance of Shamus, who felt the need to test his searching abilities against this most difficult question, and who found the images for me of the old and new logos.