Ferrari's Prancing Horse: From airplanes to desirable supercars 

Updated Jul 05, 2021 | Same topic: Automotive Industry Updates

Where did Ferrari’s iconic logo come from? 

Today, many are familiar with Ferrari’s prancing horse logo. It has, of course, become the Italian supercar maker’s signature and it is emblazoned on all of its models. As such, the mere sight of it brings forth the mental image of a powerful metallic beast (typically red in color) screaming on the race track, or cruising on the highway.  

A picture of the current Ferrari logo

The current Ferrari logo

So how did the prancing horse logo come about? How did Enzo Ferrari, the brand’s founder, come up with such an iconic symbol? 

1923: The fighter pilot 

On a fateful day in 1923, Enzo Ferrari got the chance to meet Enrico Baracca and Countess Paulina Baracca. They were the parents of Francesco Baracca, a famed and highly decorated fighter pilot who flew the French-made SPAD XIII bi-plane fighter.  

A picture of Francesco Baracca

Francesco Baracca with his SPAD XIII

Being an ace with 34 confirmed aerial victories, Francesco was a big deal in Italy at the time. The aforementioned fighter plane bore a logo of a horse that was prancing on its two rear hooves with a yellow background. As a side note, the aforementioned logo’s yellow color is also the color of Modena, which happens to be Enzo Ferrari’s birthplace.   

During the meeting, the count asked Enzo to adopt the prancing horse emblem on his cars as this was said to bring him good luck. Enzo of course took this to heart.  

The genesis of the Ferrari brand 

1932: The Scuderia Racing Team 

Later in 1932, Enzo’s Scuderia racing team participated at the 1947 Grand Prix of Spa. It was during this time that the team’s Alfa Romeo cars first bore the prancing horse logo with the yellow background. The horse was flanked with the letters S and F (Scuderia Ferrari) with the Italian flag colors on the top. Those were then contained within a shield. 

Establishing his team as a force to reckon with in the racing world, Enzo began making his products accessible to the general public. To this end, Enzo modified the symbol by replacing the S and F with the word Ferrari, while retaining the colors of the Italian flag up top. Also, it was no longer contained in a shield, but instead in a rectangle. 

The new rectangular logo with the prancing horse first appeared on the 1947 125 S, the first ever production car to bear the Ferrari name. Despite only two ever being produced, it did function as a stepping stone for Enzo to move on and make the 159 S. 

The Ferrari 125 S

The Ferrari 125 S

Fast forward to the present and Ferrari’s cars still bear the prancing horse logo that originated from Francesco Baracca’s SPAD XIII. The original Ferrari S and F logo within a shield has made a comeback on recent models like the LaFerrari, among others.

It still bears the same basic elements like the black colored prancing horse, Italian flag colors, and yellow background. We aren’t sure if it’s really that lucky, but we can be sure that it has indeed become a symbol of the brand’s engineering prowess. 

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Know more about Ferrari


In the Philippines, Motostrada Inc. located at the Bonifacio Global Center, Taguig City is the official distributor of renowned Ferrari cars nationwide. Aside from modern releases, they also offer pre-owned automobiles and provide maintenance programs for your prized possession. If you're searching for a more convenient way to browse Ferrari cars, go online and visit The user-friendly site has a wide selection of new and old models plus, you can enjoy exciting promos and deals. Also, know the latest news, reviews, and information about your other favorite car brands.

Cesar G.B. Miguel

Cesar G.B. Miguel


Cesar is a graduate of AB English with previous experience working as a freelance writer for varied internet publications in-between his former stints in the Pharmaceutical Industry, and later as a First Aid Provider and Training Staff at the Iligan City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.

Since childhood, Cesar has been keenly interested in cars. He has learned the ins and outs of these marvelous vehicles and is a competent amateur mechanic who is keen on sharing his knowledge.

Cesar is perceptive of car culture in general – not only in the Philippines but in global regard, as well. His knowledge ranges from the prevalent stories and trends among car enthusiasts around the world, to closely following the latest local and international developments in the automotive industry.

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