Established in 2002, Swiss International Air Lines (or just SWISS for short) is the main carrier in and out of Switzerland serving 72 destinations in 39 countries with a small fleet of 89 aircrafts — compared to, say, the 200-plus destinations and 700-plus aircrafts of Delta. Last week, SWISS announced a new identity design, and ad campaign, to be rolled out in October that will take over the identity created by Winkreative, dubbed the “cube”. Reportedly, the new work has been done by Publicis and Nose. A comprehensive press kit is available here.
While many of us have developed a strong affection for the present “cube” design, our new logo, which shows a SWISS tailfin with its Swiss-cross emblem, is much more clearly aligned to our positioning as the airline of Switzerland. And, together with a new advertising look, the new logo will enable us to be far more consistent and effective in communicating our “Airline of Switzerland” credentials.
— An interview with Holger Hätty, Chief Commercial Officer of Swiss International Air Lines
Like almost everyone else — or at least like the 1,487 that have signed up for the Save the swiss cube Facebook group — I found the original SWISS logo and identity to be elegant and sophisticated so it’s certainly sad to see it go away. Especially when the change is to something that lacks both elegance and sophistication. Placed inside a tailfin — because this is for airplane stuffs, you know, so it’s literally “Swiss” + “airlines” — the Swiss cross sits awkward and bulky, creating some very unpleasant counterforms inside the red shape. I am really hoping that airlines don’t start making their logos into tailfins following the lead of Virgin and now SWISS. The typography is fine although obviously way too big, at least in contrast to the old logo, but also in relation to the new icon. Apparently there is a “bold and distinctive new advertising look” coming in October that “will be focused on [their] aircraft, and on their Swiss-cross tailfins in particular” so maybe it will all come together at some point but for now, if their “sign is a promise,” the brand is not very promising.