A new era: Qantas gets an updated ‘roo and wordmark

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Published:  October 27, 2016
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Qantas works with Houstan Group to update its iconic Kangaroo mark in preparation to introduce the Boeing 787 into its fleet late next year.

Airline Qantas has revealed a new symbol for just the fifth time in the company’s history, moving on from the 2007 iteration of the design created by Hans Hulsboch. The tweaked logo is also accompanied by new typography for what is arguably Australia’s most iconic brand. The new design was overseen by industrial designer Marc Newson in partnership with Australian design agency Houston Group. Newson has previously helped design Qantas’ lounges, the A380 cabin and the iconic Skybed.

Image: Qantas

Image: Qantas

The change is only the fifth time the red-and-white image on the tail of Qantas aircraft has been updated since it was first introduced in 1944. The last update was in 2007 to coincide with the introduction of the Airbus A380 to the national carrier’s fleet.

“This new brand is more streamlined and the shading behind the kangaroo gives a better sense of movement and depth. A silver band now extends from the tail to the rear of the fuselage, to give a more premium feel,” Newson says in a statement.

“The typography for the word Qantas, which measures almost two metres high on the 787, has been carefully streamlined. And Qantas will appear on the aircraft’s belly, so you can tell when it’s the national carrier flying overhead.”

In addition, the classic winged kangaroo that appeared on tails across three decades will feature under the cockpit window and incorporate the individual name of each aircraft.

Image: Qantas

Image: Qantas

Image: Houston Group

Image: Houston Group

Image: Houston Group

Image: Houston Group

“Since the image of a kangaroo first appeared on a Qantas aircraft more than 80 years ago, it’s come to represent the spirit of Australia. When passengers see the Qantas tail at airports around the world, it’s a symbol of home,” says  Qantas Group CEO, Alan Joyce.

“We wanted to make sure our brand remained familiar but we also wanted it to be more modern and dynamic, like the 787 and like Qantas.”

The new design will gradually appear across the Qantas network from today, starting with digital assets, signage and advertising. Inventory of other items – such as pyjamas – has been run down in preparation for the new logo. Updating branding on aircraft will be sequenced with scheduled re-paints, to be completed in time for the airline’s centenary in 2020.


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