Toyota has defended its place atop the annual BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study, maintained by research group Millward Brown - with Tesla improving on its 2016 position of 10th place.
Each year, the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study lists values for the world’s biggest companies. The study’s formula considers whether a brand resonates with buyers, whether it offers the benefit of different and new trendsetting products or features, and whether it is salient – something that comes to mind instantly.
The company says its data is drawn from interviews with more than two million consumers worldwide.
There are few surprises at the top end of the automotive category in 2017, with the Toyota, BMW and Mercedes-Benz brands tying down first, second and third almost since the study's inception in 2007.
The period from 2010 to 2013 saw Toyota and BMW wrestling for top spot, but the Japanese brand has held a comfortable lead in the years since. Likewise, Mercedes-Benz has held a relatively secure third, although largely unable to get close to the top two. Indeed, Honda booted the tri-star brand to a close fourth in 2009.
In 2017, Mercedes-Benz has come closer than ever to the top two, reflecting its global sales success over recent years. It remains third, but now by only a little more than $1 million in brand value.
Ranked 30th overall, Toyota leads the automotive category with a brand value of US$28.66 billion, while BMW is 35th on $24.559b and Mercedes is 40b on $23.513m.
And, while Toyota and BMW slipped three and eight places respectively, Mercedes-Benz climbed four spots.
The next automotive brand in the charts is Ford, ranked way down in 83rd with a brand value of US$13.1b, followed by Honda (91, $12.2b) and Nissan in 100th spot with a brand value of $11.3b.
Brands that didn't make it into the overall 100 and thus weren't ranked, include Audi ($9.4b), Tesla ($5.9b), Land Rover ($5.5b) and Porsche ($5.1b).
Tesla's ranking may be of interest: last year was its maiden appearance, in 10th place, but this year it leapfrogged Porsche and Land Rover for 9th place.
Elsewhere in the overall top-100 list, Google ($245.5b) retained 1st place ahead of Apple ($234.67b), Microsoft ($143.22b) held a distant third, Amazon ($139.28b) ran a close 4th - up from 7th - and Facebook ($129.8b) finished 5th.
Top 10 automotive brand values:
World’s most valuable car brands in billions; rank in top global 100; % value change from 2016