Vellum Venom Vignette: Peak Emblem

Sajeev Mehta
by Sajeev Mehta

This just happened. (photo courtesy: Ram)

Most design students don’t consider Peak Oil in their studies, but The Reckoning was on my reading list back then. While Peak Oil is tangentially connected to car design, we clearly reached Peak Emblem.

It cannot get any worse than what’s being introduced in Chicago this week.

Emblem size, just like wheel size and body/firewall (versus glass) height has been on the rise for over a decade. Park a new Corolla next to a 1995-2000 model for proof. The problem is empty real estate, sheets of painted metal with no landscaping. A big problem for a top-tier RAM, for the Laramie Limited trim. How do you visually separate a premium model when even the mid-level model has that in-yo-face look from a huge grille and acres of chrome?

Larger and larger emblems, apparently: on the grille and the tailgate. Damn Son, dat tailgate!

As mentioned before, it’s all about proportioning: big butts need MOAR BLING. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, unless the proportions are so extreme that creativity is stifled and the sheet metal cannot to rest on its design laurels. A shame, as the RAM (like many new Chrysler designs) are quite fetching by themselves.

Here’s my suggestion:

Stamp a (unique to trim levels like the Laramie Limited) tailgate with negative area, then add a metal insert with small(er that what you did) lettering. Of course Ye Old School Dodge has a much smaller tailgate, but applying the concept of negative area to the Laramie makes sense. Well, perhaps not the financial sense of slapping the biggest emblems you can make on dat butt.

Peak Emblem is real, it happened.

Thanks for reading, I hope you have a lovely weekend.

Sajeev Mehta
Sajeev Mehta

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