Toyota defended its title as the world's most valuable car brand in a new ranking, holding off BMW and Mercedes-Benz. Tesla, meanwhile, made the biggest improvement, rising two spots to No. 8 because of a 32 percent increase in its brand value.
Toyota's brand value decreased 3 percent to $28.7 billion as increased sales were offset by tough currency challenges as well as increased investment and rising labor costs, according to the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study released by market researcher Kantar Millward Brown.
"Toyota is seen as a reliable, quality value brand," Peter Walshe, Global BrandZ director at Kantar Millward Brown, told Automotive News Europe. "Even when it was going through its recall problems, the users were saying, ‘What’s all the fuss about, my car is fine.’ Toyota has delivered great value for years."
Toyota has been No. 1 in 10 of the 12 years the study has been conducted.
Telsa passes Porsche, Land Rover
Tesla, which increased its brand value 32 percent to $5.9 billion, overtook Land Rover and Porsche to jump to No. 8 in this year's ranking from No. 10 last year among automotive brands.
“The Tesla story is interesting because it is not just the cars it offers now, it is the promise for the future," Walshe said. “There is a perception that it offers a fantastic brand experience, even among non-owners. The only other brands that I’ve seen have this kind of appeal before they got into mass market were Apple and Facebook."
Land Rover slipped to a spot to No. 9 despite increasing its brand value 17 percent to $5.5 billion. "Land Rover is doing incredibly well in all its main markets because of the growing appetite for SUVs. They have taken advantage of that," Walshe said.