Recently we published a list of the Top 10 Coolest Automotive Logos. As its title suggests, the piece highlights some of the most visually arresting emblems found in the automotive space today.
While researching this story, it became clear there was an opportunity to pen a similar article, one focusing on specific vehicle nameplates instead of brands. So, that’s exactly what we’ve done here.
SEE ALSO: Top 10 Coolest Automotive Logos
What are the coolest, most inspiring, audacious or graphically pleasing insignias gracing today’s automobiles? Well, listed below are some of our favorite vehicle-specific emblems found on cars and trucks that are currently in production. This pedantic caveat excludes things like Audi quattro or Cadillac V-Series logos, which encompass model ranges rather than a specific vehicle. Without belaboring that point, here’s what we’ve compiled…
10. Nissan Titan
And we start with a pickup truck, the 2017 Nissan Titan. This hard-working rig features with a new logo, one that resembles a stylized “T.” But that’s not all; this emblem also brings to mind the front of a Spartan warrior’s helmet, which is pretty cool.
9. Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
Alfa Romeo’s Giulia is worlds apart from the Titan, being a European luxury sports sedan instead of a body-on-frame truck. But aside from rolling on four wheels and having an internal-combustion engine, it does share one other thing in common with its distant Japanese relative: a neat logo. Range-topping Quadrifoglio models are graced with a four-leaf-clover badge on each front fender. These honor the Italian brand’s rich motorsports heritage and one of its drivers that died during a race in the 1920s. How’s that for history?
8. Nissan GT-R
Moving on, we cast our collective gaze upon another Nissan, specifically the brand’s killer GT-R supercar. Its model-specific logo may just be a trio of letters, but they’re three of our favorites, with the “G” and “T” perched atop the much-larger “R,” which is rendered in chrome with red accents. The combination is sporty, fun and tasteful all at the same time, plus it’s graphically more interesting that what you get on, say, the Acura NSX.
7. Chevy Impala
Following those high-performance models, it’s time for a breather with our No. 7 pick. The Chevy Impala is hardly a road-rocket, but it doesn’t need to be. This sedan is cool, calm and comforting, plus it’s graced with a unique logo, one that incorporates a stylized image of its namesake (or spirit?) animal. Ringed in chrome, an equally shiny antelope is shown in profile bounding along, implying swiftness and agility.
6. Dodge Challenger Hellcat
If we need to explain why a 707-horsepower coupe is cool, then you have no business visiting a website like AutoGuide.com. When it comes to tire-roasting fun, Dodge’s Challenger Hellcat is the undisputed champion, thanks, in part, to its supercharged Hemi V8. But aside from this nifty parlor trick, the car is also adorned with some seriously cool emblems, a snarling, stylized jungle cat that looks ready to eat your face. Sure, you can get a Hellcat version of the brand’s Charger sedan as well, but whatever. We’re willing to bend the rules to include this one…
5. Ford Raptor
Ready for another truck? If not, you’ll probably change your tune when you learn our next pick is the Ford Raptor. With massive suspension travel, a beefed-up EcoBoost V6 and tires that are knobbier than a studio-sized audio mixer, this tough pickup is designed for severe, high-speed off-roading. And that’s exactly where it shines, in places like the deserts of Baja California in Mexico. Naturally, a sweet rig like this deserves an equally cool logo, which is exactly what Ford designers have given it.
4. Toyota 86
Next up, the Toyota 86, née Scion FR-S. From day one, this sporty, rear-drive coupe has always been a hoot and a half to drive, even if it’s a touch short on power. The car’s numerical name is an homage to high-performance Toyotas from bygone decades. As a Scion, each front fender was emblazoned with a logo that resembled both a horizontally opposed engine, which the car is powered by, as well as a stylized form of 86. This detail has been dropped from the current version of the car but those digits can still be found elsewhere, like in the center of the steering wheel.
3. Ford Mustang
Ford’s Mustang is one of the most iconic cars in the world. For more than 50 years, this stylish and sporty machine has brought joy to innumerable enthusiasts around the world. Aside from rich heritage, it also features an awesome logo, one that’s been with the Mustang since day one. The galloping pony emblem is beautifully designed and instantly recognizable, just like Coca-Cola, the Eiffel Tower or Lada Gaga.
2. Dodge Viper
But perhaps even more inspiring than the Mustang’s horsey emblem is the logo found on Dodge Vipers. Sure, this badge changed a few times over the past two and a half decades, but it’s nonetheless cool to the core, just like the vehicle it’s attached to. And watch out because the car’s namesake reptile is ready to strike… strike fear into the hearts of drivers not prepared to handle the prodigious 600 lb-ft of torque provided by its 8.4-liter V10. If you find the Viper inspiring, get one while you still can. It looks like 2017 will be curtains for this Detroit-built brawler.
1. Chevrolet Corvette
Finally, we come to a vehicle with one of the coolest logo of all time, an award goes to another Chevrolet, the brand’s iconic Corvette! This sports car’s crossed-banners emblem is evocative, powerful and fueled by decades of heritage. The car has competed on streets, strips and circuits around the world, undoubtedly taking more than its share of checkered flags along the way.
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