The true meaning of the ‘sky blue and white quartered’ BMW logo is the most controversial issue of the company. According to Dr. Florian Triebel, Executive Board Member of BMW AG, “There are two traditions concerning the significance of the BMW logo and trademark, offering two different interpretations of its sky blue and white fields..."
One theory is that the circular blue and white BMW logo or roundel is portrayed by BMW as the movement of an aircraft propeller, to signify the white blades cutting through the blue sky – an interpretation that BMW adopted for convenience in 1929, twelve years after the roundel was created.
The theory is further strengthened with the statement that the image has its origins in World War I in which the Bavarian Luftwaffe flew planes painted in blue and white. It also reflects the origins of BMW as a military aircraft engine maker during WWI and the belief that BMW started as an aero engine manufacturer.
Another theory is that the emblem evolved from the circular Rapp Motorenwerke company logo, from which the BMW company grew, combined with the white and blue colors of the flag of Bavaria, reversed to produce the BMW roundel.
According to an article recently posted by the New York times, quoting "At the BMW Museum in Munich, Anne Schmidt-Possiwal, explained that the blue-and-white company logo did not represent a spinning propeller, but was meant to show the colors of the Free State of Bavaria."The origin of the logo is still being disputed.
It is one of the most distinctive logo designs in the world, speaking highly of a brand-led company. The 1929 Dixi was the first vehicle to carry the famous BMW logo.
The BMW logo has been altered very rarely and minutely and has maintained its original look throughout the company's history. Here are some of the logos that have been used since 1917.
A 1930's BMW Dixi.