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The Volvo logo and its use of the Mars symbol

Astrology in branding and advertising

Published June 18, 2024

Let's talk about the Volvo brand logo and its use of the symbol for the planet Mars. This timeline shows the evolution of the Volvo logo over time, starting in 1927: classic Mars symbol with the diagonal [line], which has now become a staple of their branding.

We had a sort of renaissance in the 40s with this new typeface. Of course the fifties brought the brick and wood paneling everything… totally mid century. The seventies, we got a little more mid-modern and it looks like a gas station logo. I don't know what that's about. 2005 is not bad. I wish the arrow was a little longer. And then today's logo, I think branding wise, I love that they kept the diagonal [line.] I think it looks the sleekest and the nicest. Again, wish the arrow was a little bit longer, but who am I to be a size queen with Volvo's logo?

But in case you're wondering, the use of Mars in the Volvo logo is intentional. So let's look at what the Volvo website says:

“Ancient logotype: At the same time as Volvo was reactivated, the ancient chemical symbol for iron, a circle with an arrow pointing diagonally upwards to the right, was adapted as a logotype.

This is one of the oldest and most common ideograms in Western culture, and originally stood for the planet Mars in the Roman Empire. Because it also symbolized the Roman god of warfare, Mars, and the masculine gender, as every bird watcher can tell, an early relationship was established between the Mars symbol and the metal from which most weapons were made at the time, iron.

As such, the ideogram has long been the symbol of the iron industry, not least in Sweden. The iron badge on the car was supposed to take up this symbolism and create associations with the honored traditions of the Swedish iron industry: steel and strength, with properties such as safety, quality, and durability.

The new car also got its name, Volvo, written in its own typeface, Egyptian. Today, the iron logo also stands for a brand that radiates modern and exciting design, and has a strong emotive connection with consumers.”

Despite the artistic evolution of this brand logo over time, it always maintained its original Mars symbolism. And it's no coincidence that Volvo is known for its strength and durability. The reason why Volvos are so expensive is because if you get in an accident while you're driving a Volvo, you're more likely to come out of that accident alive than the car that you hit. If you're in a smart car going up against the Volvo, you're turning into Flat Stanley.

Think about the astrology of Mars ruling Aries, which is the Ram. The Ram has the ability to hit something head on and walk out unscratched. A head on collision in a Volvo… you're more likely to walk away from that accident alive. Of course there's practical laws of physics to thank for that, with the strength of steel that Volvo is made from. But there is also a bit of magic in having your car inscribed with the insignia of the planet that rules strength and durability.

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