London-based studio ShopTalk, in collaboration with Swiss type designer Robin Eberwein and the Piëch Design Lab, has created a bespoke brand typeface for start-up Swiss sports car company Piëch.
Piëch Sans is a geometric sans serif font that marries European tradition and electric innovation.
The design of the typeface references Swiss Style (also known as the International Typographic Style) which emerged in Europe during the 1950s and came to define the mid-century Modernist graphic design of the era. Well-known Swiss Style typefaces include Akzidenz-Grotesk, Helvetica and Univers.
Piëch Sans is described as a “digital-first interpretation” of traditional Swiss Style font design, aligning with Piëch’s overarching union of timeless craft and tradition with future-facing tech-led innovations.
The geometric letterforms are largely based on circles, taken from the dieresis (the dots from the logomark) which forms part of the hero brand identity, as well as borrowing from dynamic curves found on the Piëch car itself – such as a ‘j’ that references the cars’ lights.
Piëch Sans has been designed in nine weights: Thin, Ultralight, Light, Book, Regular, Medium, Semibold, Bold and Superbold. The typeface currently comprises a total of 562 glyphs and spans 94 different languages.
The typeface includes a wide range of alternates that serve to emphasise the font concept; echo the Piëch car forms; and underscore the dynamism and modernity of the brand. Among these features are a number of alternates for numbers, including a geometric version inspired by the digits found on vintage racing cars imbuing the sporting heritage Piëch aim to capture with their car design.
The bespoke typography forms the foundation of the wider Piëch visual identity & strategy, expressing the essence of the brand by enabling simple, beautiful craft-led communications, always building on their iconic European sports car heritage. It’s a radical departure from the usual clichés and conventions of ‘classic’ car advertising.
“Piëch looked at every single design detail when crafting the car and typography was an opportunity for us to apply that same level of attention to detail,” says ShopTalk. “Typography is a hugely important communication brand tool, but is equally as important in the experience of driving the car, through elements such as the dashboard welcome screen and UI. Working with such a talented type designer as Robin meant that we were able to build on the other skilled designers and makers that have contributed in all areas of the car design process.”
Piëch Sans is one element within the wider branding that ShopTalk has created for Piëch, which will roll-out fully when the car becomes available for public purchase in 2024.
Car photography credit: Claude Gabriel
- Agency/Creative: ShopTalk
- Article Title: ShopTalk Creates Bespoke Brand Typeface for Swiss Sports Car Company Piëch
- Organisation/Entity: Agency
- Project Type: Typography
- Project Status: Published
- Agency/Creative Country: United Kingdom
- Agency/Creative City: London
- Market Region: Europe, Global
- Project Deliverables: Brand Identity, Brand Strategy, Typography
- Industry: Transport
- Keywords: Automotive, dynamic, modernity, geometric, Piëch Sans
Brand and design studio: ShopTalk