The Secret Life Of The Michelin Man

The whiter-than-milk Michelin Man is one of the oldest brand logos to have existed. However, the Michelin Man’s journey and transformation is long and interesting. Here are a few things about the Michelin Man you probably didn’t know.

1. The Michelin Man Has More Oscars Than Johnny Depp: In 2010, the famous logo appeared in an Academy Award-winning short titled Logorama. The film featured two Michelin cops chasing down the iconic Ronald McDonald.

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2. The Michelin Man Was Inspired By A Pile Of Tyres: It is said that when the Michelin brothers attended the Lyon Universal Exposition of 1894, Edward saw a pile of tyres and visualized arms and legs on it. Four years after this original inspiration, cartoonist O’Galop sketched the original logo for the first time.

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3. The White Colour Is Historically Correct: Most people wonder that if tyres are black, how come the Michelin Man is white. Well, before 1912 tyre were manufactured off-whitish or beige, the original color of rubber. It only after 1912 that carbon, which gives tyres the black color, was added to the manufacturing process.

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4. The Godfather Of The Road: Marlon Brando and the Michelin Man had a lot in common. Cigars, for one. Early versions of the Michelin man portrayed drinking, smoking, scary looking mummy-like character. He always had a cigar in his mouth, and a glass full of metal bits and harmful obstacles found on the road. After 1920 The Michelin Man quit smoking.

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5. His Real Name Is Bibendum: Bibendum is a part of a Latin phrase nunc est Bibendum, meaning ‘drink up’. It implied that Michelin tyres swallow up all the obstacles in their path.

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6. The Michelin Man’s Best Friend: The Michelin Man once had a dog. An American television advertisement showed Bibendum with a similar looking poofy white puppy, called Bubbles, or Bibelosis, eventually shortened to Bib.

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