VOLKSWAGEN, LEXUS ARE OUT; AMERICAN ELECTRIC VEHICLE UPSTART TESLA SLIPS INTO 10TH POSITION
Toyota is still on top, BMW is still second and Mercedes-Benz is still third in the latest top 10 list for brand value in the global automotive market calculated each year by research group Millward Brown.
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 something that comes to mind instantly.
The company says its data is drawn from interviews with more than two million consumers worldwide.
For 2016, the top 10 saw two key changes: Lexus is out, losing its 10th position to American electric vehicle upstart Tesla, while the Volkswagen brand has been replaced by stablemate Porsche.
According to the study, Tesla’s ascension into the top 10 can be attributed to innovation, a fundamental and stated focus on environment-friendliness and its unusual direct-sales distribution model. These characteristics, Millward Brown says, set Tesla apart as the “most different”.
“The Tesla brand has come to represent much more than beautiful cars; it also means breakthrough technology and exhilarating performance. Tesla has become a symbol of a new way of living — clean, bright, innovative and forward-thinking,” said analyst Emilie Hamer.
“Tesla’s pioneering spirit, as personified by founder Elon Musk, conveys an urgency to shed the old ways of doing things.”
Volkswagen has fallen out of the top 10, with its emissions test cheating scandal impacting on the brand’s value.
Volkswagen Group brand Audi also suffered, holding its place in seventh but suffering a 6 per cent drop in brand value.
The top three brands’ values improved, as did fifth-placed Nissan. The others slipped or saw no change at all, except for Tesla and Porsche, which don’t have a previous value in the BrandZ study to be compared with.