Toyota has added value to the brand in the last year, survey showed

Toyota has added value to the brand in the last year, survey showed

Toyota is the world's most valuable automotive brand, according to a new survey by Millward Brown which ranked the automaker 26th overall.

The top three were Google, Apple and IBM.

The survey said Toyota's brand value was US$29.6bn, up 21% in a year. BMW ranked second at $25.7bn, up 7%, and Mercedes-Benz third at $21.5bn, up 20%.

Honda, Ford, Nissan, Volkswagen, Audi, Chevrolet and Hyundai rounded out the top 10 with Chevy being new to the list this year.

"The brand value of the car category improved 17% after a 5% lift a year ago. Car sales accelerated 8% in the US to 15.6m units, and are expected to reach pre-crisis sales levels this year. Western Europe continued to improve, although discounts weakened margins. Sales advanced sharply in China but declined in the other BRICs," the study said.

It noted that three new trends had emerged:

"Technology - Consumers expected cars loaded with technology, regardless of price point. Conditioned by rapid smartphone apps, they also expected car technology to improve with the speed of downloads.

"Safety remained an overriding concern. A key reason people trade in cars after the third year of ownership is to upgrade to new safety features. Luxury brands are moving beyond crash survival to crash avoidance.

"Trust - GM conducted two large recalls and apologised for its slow response to a critical safety problem, promising a transparent investigation. Toyota accepted a $1.2bn fine from US regulators for misleading consumers during its 2009 stuck accelerator crisis."