Passing one of Germany’s largest cargo stations on a daily basis, I noticed that the design of lorries is quite different from most regular design. To be frank, it usually strikes me as rather bad. Recurring features contributing to this impression include:
- low readability, either due to the chosen typeface or backgrounds;
- shadow effects;
- clunky, indistinctive typefaces;
- excessive use of all caps or small caps;
- overly tight or wide letter-spacing;
- a general retro feel (1990s, if I am not mistaken).
There are occasional exceptions from this, but the general trend is striking.
What are the reasons behind these peculiarities of the design of haulage companies? For example:
Are there any practical reasons for these choices?
Are these designs aimed at a particular kind of customer (of the cargo companies)?
Is it a case of intentional cheap design? If yes, why?
If it is just (unintentional) cheap design, why is this an economic choice? I would expect that if this is a relevant means of acquiring customers, the design would be better. On the other hand, if it is not, I would expect the design being completely home-made¹ or the space being used for advertisement.
If it makes any difference, I am asking about Central Europe here.
¹ which could explain some cases, but seems unlikely for some of them
Note that most of the following examples were obtained via a trapezoid transform and may not have an exact aspect ratio.