Amsterdam creative agency Khanna \ Reidinga has designed the visual identity and branding of Volkswagen’s new mobility division – MOIA

MOIA is all about re-imagining urban mobility – essentially making city transport systems safer and easier to use. Based in Berlin and Hamburg, a small team will work independently and act as a start-up company, but will share resources, knowledge and infrastructure with the Volkswagen Group. 

Although no substantial product has been produced yet, the company is in the stages of research and talking to urban residents, hackers, bus drivers, cyclists, skaters and commuters. 

MOIA will focus first on ride-sharing services, in conjunction with their investment in Gett, and on-demand public transport such as e-shuttles and connected commuting. Using existing bus stops and smart booking systems, e-shuttles will move people around cities in what is hoped to be a more convenient method than a traditional bus service. 

Volkswagen has big hopes for their new branch. MOIA global marketing director Maria Soni Reissfelder says the vision for MOIA is to shape the way people move for coming decades, and to create a strong business model for Volkswagen. By 2025, the Volkswagen Group is hoping to attribute a “substantial portion” of its sales to MOIA.

So you can imagine it must have been a big job for Khanna \ Reidinga to design its name, logo and visual identity.

“What could be more human than the need to move? That was our starting point when we considered the task of reinventing the idea of mobility from a visual standpoint,” says Khanna \ Reidinga co-founder Rikki Khanna.

Rikki says the visual identity was inspired from a quote of British science-fiction writer and inventor Arthur C Clarke: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”. 

Playing on this idea, the name MOIA is a wordplay based on Maya, the word for magic in Sanskrit, one of the world’s ancient language of Hinduism.

The visual identity logo and typefaces were created to reflect the beauty of seamless transition, with respect to VW’s heritage. 

“At first glance the logo looks very different from the classic style of the Volkswagen Group, but if you look carefully, you will see an homage to VW,” says Rikki.

Khanna \ Reidinga have also worked for Beats by Dre, Vodafone and Magnum Boots.