The world’s most valuable and powerful car brands

When it comes to brand recognition, car brands have to be near the top of the list. It is almost impossible to escape automotive advertising on TV or online, or leave home without seeing many different car badges on vehicles. Auto manufacturers also have some of the most valuable brands in the world – hardly surprising considering that the global automotive industry had revenues of $918,644.4 million in 2012. So which car brands are the most valuable, and which are the most powerful? We break down the findings from the 2014 Brand Directory list.

The most valuable car brands

  Name Rank amongst all brands Country Brand Value (USD $ Millions)
1 Toyota 11 Japan 34,903
2 BMW 17 Germany 28,962
3 Volkswagen 19 Germany 27,062
4 Mercedes-Benz 26 Germany 24,171
5 Honda 31 Japan 22,152
6 Nissan 32 Japan 21,194
7 Ford 41 USA 20,236
8 Hyundai 52 South Korea 18,831
9 Porsche 98 Germany 11,370
10 Renault 132 France 9,010
SourceBrand Directory

From this list it is immediately clear that the strongest car brands come out of Japan and Germany, with three brands from each country rounding out the top 6. These two countries continue to be at the forefront of automotive production and have built up valuable brands in both the luxury and affordable segments.

It is hardly surprising to see Toyota topping the list of car makers, boasting the highest number of global sales with continually popular models such as the Corolla and Hilux. Toyota’s largely positive reputation for reliability and quality also helps the brand rank so highly.

Another interesting stat to note is the lack of USA-based brands in the top 10; Ford is the only US-manufacturer to feature, ranking 41st out of all brands. All US brands experienced drops in value compared to 2013, reflecting Detroit’s recent struggles to keep the country’s automotive industry afloat.

What about the most powerful brands?

Brand Rating Strength Auto Manufacturers
AAA+ Extremely strong Ferrari
AAA-   Toyota
AA+ Very strong Honda
AA   Renault
Kia Motors
AA-   Subaru
A+ Strong Suzuki

SourceBrand Directory

Ferrari has been named by Brand Finance as the most powerful brand in the world, joining 10 other elite brands that have achieved AAA+ ratings. Other brands with the highest rating include Coca-Cola, Google, Hemes and Red Bull. Ferrari scored the top honour thanks to its prancing horse logo that is recognisable worldwide, and brand loyalty among fans. While Ferrari may be the world’s most powerful brand, it is far from the most valuable due to the niche of being such a luxury product. Ferrari comes in at 350 on the value list with a value of US$4 billion.

While Ferrari has been ranked as the most powerful out of any brand in the world, it is important to note that all car brands on the list scored a rating of A+ or above. These high ratings indicate the strength of automotive brands and the industry in general.


These tables and statistics are interesting as they provide a good overview of where automotive brands sit within the industry, and where the auto industry sits among the global economy. In these changing times however, the auto industry is experiencing constant shifts and changes, with new brands coming up the ranks and some mainstays fading in popularity. It will be interesting to examine these figures again in the coming years to see how the auto industry evolves.

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