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VIDEO US Airways A319 painted in American Airlines colors

Watch a time-lapse video of N809AW, a US Airways A319, being repainted in American Airlines' new livery. ( More...

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Doug Herman 9
I know it was old, a little tired and a little dated, but the bare metal and the AA logo over the stylized eagle wings that were the American livery for all of my adult life should have stayed. It was the one stable, classy thing in airline branding. United changed livery three or four times, the list of defunct/merged airlines is staggering as their livery disappeared (I loved the Braniff "Flying Colors") but American always looked like American. OK, I'm a old guy who is not particularly fond of change, but American, back when flying was several large notches above Greyhound (I was flying for business in the suit and tie days), really was THE domestic airline for my air travel dollar. Ditto the late, great Pan Am for international flights.
LGM118 5
I'm 24 years old. The American Airlines logo was still good. More importantly, it was iconic. That's a word that gets thrown around a lot, but the reality of it is this. The American Airlines logo was instantly recognizable. It conveyed just about everything it needed to convey instantly. It belongs up there with the London Underground Roundel and the McDonalds arches. I re-watched the unveil video from January of last year, and it was fairly blatant that they had no clue what they were doing. It's right there in the script, "you've been hearing a lot about how the modern travel experience is going to feel, and today we're ready to show you how it's going to look." He isn't talking about the American Airlines experience, he's talking about the "modern travel experience." He could be talking about anything! He then has to actually specify that he's talking about a new American Airlines logo. Tom Horton proved in one sentence that his own airline's "vision" was terrible.
Doug Herman 4
Change for the sake of change is almost always a wrong idea. NBC has updated its logo occasionally over the years but you know what? The peacock is always there. The stuff around the peacock changes, but the real branding device, the peacock, is always in the picture, very little changed since its introduction in the late '50s. Iconic is the right word.
matt jensen 1
In my experience the most recognizable carriers were Braniff, TWA, Eastern & PanAm. Loved them all. AAL, USAir, UAL are all horrible; Delta ranks low on my list.
Doug Herman 2
Being a west coast guy, I didn't have a lot of exposure to Eastern. But their "Wings of Man" advertising campaigns, narrated by Orson Welles, were absolutely the best. True class and true classics.
Doug Herman 1
Here's a link to one of Eastern's great radio commercials, lifted from a 1970 aircheck of WLS in Chicago. This is so good it gives me goosebumps.
What was wrong with the AA and the RWB stripes along the fuselage? That look was iconic.
Doug Herman 4
You can almost imagine the meetings at American/US Airways. "American went broke, US Airways and some of the airlines it bought have been broke a few times. This is more than bad luck. Something is very wrong. What do you think our problem is? We need to fix this!" "Well, boss, here in the Marketing Department, we think we've figured it out. Bad paint."
matt jensen 3
America West saved USAir, which in turn saved AAL. AW was the better carrier of the three.
sharon bias 3
Wish they had spent that money on making the seats and interiors nice. Both AA and US Air tend to have tired, dirty planes. I don't care what's on the outside. I don't want to sit on seats that smell like dirty laundry.
tpmorrow 3
Yep, they tout their new planes, the new launch and merger, but having experienced their new 777s (from London to Dallas, for example), they're certainly shiny and new, but that has no benefit for the vast majority of passengers: In economy it's 10 across(!), the seats are now narrower, and seat pitch has been further reduced. Even the flight attendants complain about it, because the new config in economy makes precise cart navigation necessary.
A few hours into a flight, you see anyone taller than 5'5" with their legs and/or heads in the aisle. People absolutely dread a trip to the bathroom due to the contortions required of everyone in the row to get out of their seats. Polite passengers do not dare put their seats back, as this gives the person behind literally mere inches to eat or read. And if you're unlucky enough to be sitting behind a reclined seat, you're quite simply forced to sleep, as most people don't have the close- (or near-)sightedness to read or watch a film, either on their own device, or on the seat screen. And if you could read, you'd see the smiling face of their CEO on the in-flight magazine bloviating about how much they care about passenger comfort.
The worst ruse they've pulled off is the euphemistic "Economy Plus" seats, charging quite a lot to simply get the legroom/seat pitch (but just barely) that common sense tells you is required for sitting stationary for 10+ hours.
Airlines all say that their profits are razor thin and competition is tough, hence the need to "economize" (newspeak for "pack them in like sardines, even if it's damned uncomfortable, and to hell with them if they complain), and while I believe it, I'm sure they'd make seats even smaller (recall the "saddle" seat idea of Ryanair) if they could get away with it.
matt jensen 1
I'd report them to the health dept, but I don't know what jurisdiction.
Jim Barger 2
There is, alas, no longer, any "airline tradition" in the US. The air carriers of my youth, Eastern, TWA, Pan American, Branniff--all are gone. Why lament the insignificant cosmetic changes wrought by those few remaining ancients who are barely surviving? In my dotage I reminisce on bygone days when airline travel was a luxurious and most pleasurable experience!
The new livery looks great saw the A/C in ORD yesterday even better looking up close. Still miss the original polished Alum imagine the added weight with all this paint..... I'll enjoy flying the new Livery it'll grow on me
sam kahill 2
I wonder how much it cost in $, and man/hours....after one or two Layers of paint, the lettering appears, then it's painted over, then it reappears, wow...not your typical paint job!
Dan Chiasson 2
@Doug H
You mention "the meatball" - secret GE employee code ;-).
Doug Herman 2
I know. Never worked for GE but I have a business partner, a chemical engineer, who worked in GE's adhesives and sealants business for years. He always refers to the trademark as "the meatball." A perfect description of a classic logo. Right up there with Mercedes-Benz, BMW, IBM, Union Pacific, the CBS "eye". Trademarks that have stood the test of time...lots and lots of time...and it would be insane to change them now, just in the interest of "style".
pjbonner 2
How much does that cost for each plane?
Dan Chiasson 3
Clearly a decision by committee with the resulting dog's breakfast of a design. Appears uncoordinated, forgettable, and cheap. What ever happened to the concept of establishing a clearly recognizable, brand that a company will commit to for the long run? Think Nike, McDonalds, IBM, GE, Apple, BMW, IKEA, etc., etc.etc. Perhaps the lack of confidence in their future is expressed in their design.
Doug Herman 2
GE is the perfect example. They've been using their "meatball" trademark for almost a century. That it's old and out of style sure hasn't hurt them a bit!
The US flag is recognizable from miles away. The old was starting to look dated. This new design represents the best of these two airlines merged. The employees voted FOR it.
Well, the employees sort of voted for it. They were given a choice between the current tail (which is awful) or a tail with the old AA logo, but at the front end the ridiculous new forward looking, is it an eagle? swoosh thing would still rule.

You can read about it here.
LGM118 2
More accurate title: "VIDEO Something good being turned into something awful"

I've never been the biggest fan of the US Airways livery, but the new American Airlines livery is easily so atrociously awful that any plane that uses it is instantly made worse.
jeff slack -1
Truer words have never been written; I agree absolutely THEE worst livery ever conceived.
I wonder when they will get to painting a Greyhound on to match the other buses out on the highway?
america west, us air, american,.. the paint companies are getting rich.

AW blew them all away with their model, but not gonna lie - the AMERICAN livery beats them all
matt jensen 3
The paint job isn't going to make them a better carrier.
Jan Randle 1
Very nice.
While I loved the iconic AA logo, they had to do something different. With the new composite materials, the shiny silver body wasn't possible, and they couldn't replicate by using silver paint. No matter what livery they use, the service has to exceed the expectation.
We understand that with composite bodies, the shiny look wasn't attainable, but why change the overall look? US Airways didn't incorporate any of America West's livery, even though America West is what saved US. A glossy gray with the same red-white-and-blue stripes along the fuselage and the same tail logo would have nicely preserved the iconic and historic look.
MH370 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Time Lapse Video: US Airways A319 Joining American Airlines

From one flag on the tail to another, we get to see the transformation of an US Airways Airbus A319 from their livery to the new American Airlines livery. Now, are there still people out there who don’t like the new American livery?
Judging by the comments preceding yours, it's pretty clear there are a lot of poeple who don't. While I personally would have preferred that America West kept its livery (even while adopting the US Airways name), the new US Airways logo just didn't seem as jarringly abstract as this new AA scheme. No accounting for taste, I guess.


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