Toyota defends title as world's most valuable car brand, report says
Photo credit: Brand Finance
LOS ANGELES -- Toyota regained considerable value to once again be the world's most valuable automotive brand at $26 billion, up 6 percent from last year, according to marketing consultancy Brand Finance.
The surprise performer in the study was Volkswagen, which rose 33 percent to jump from fourth to second at $23.7 billion, despite sales softness in its home European market, the report said.
German brands dominated the other top spots, with BMW and Mercedes-Benz in third and fourth places despite their relatively low volumes compared with the global auto giants.
The top American car brand was Ford, rated fifth at $19.6 billion, with a 12 percent growth. Chevy was next among U.S. brands, moving up one spot to 12th -- with a 26 percent gain in value to $6.0 billion.
"The successful launch of the Chevrolet Cruze has aided this year's growth," the report said.
Toyota's resurgence comes after two years of declines. The 2010 unintended acceleration recall crisis knocked $1.2 billion off the automaker's value; damage from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami pared another $1.7 billion.
"Toyota has worked hard to rebuild consumer confidence, restoring its reputation for reliability whilst introducing stylish new designs and advertising campaigns that appeal to a younger demographic," David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, based in London, said in a statement.
Across all industries, Toyota ranks 15th in brand value, trailing such industry giants as Apple, Samsung and Google.
Haigh noted that brand value is not the same as brand power. The world's "most powerful" brand -- automotive or otherwise -- is Ferrari.
Despite carrying a relatively low value of $3.6 billion, just behind Jaguar and ahead of Tata, Ferrari's combination of measures such as brand affection, loyalty and profitability give it "unrivaled brand strength," Haigh said.
To determine brand value, Brand Finance examined the royalty rate that would be payable for its use if it were owned by a third party. The royalty rate is applied to future revenue to determine an earnings stream attributable to the brand, then discounted back to a net present value.
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