Car makers tops in global green brands

Five of top 10 green brands for 2013 are car companies

June 17, 2013
by Fleet Management staff

New York, NY – Interbrand has released its 2013 Best Global Green Brands report. The automotive sector dominates with Toyota (number one), Ford (number two), and Honda (number three) claiming the top three spots in this year’s report. Nissan (fifth) and Ford, earn honours as the year’s top risers, and Kia is a new entrant at 37th.
Interbrand’s 2013 Best Global Green Brands report examines the gap that exists between a corporation’s environmental practices and consumers’ perceptions of those practices. When identifying the top 50 Best Global Green Brands each year, Interbrand starts with the 100 brands that make up its annual Best Global Brands report. Interbrand then conducts extensive consumer research to capture public perception of the brand’s sustainable or green practices and compares that to environmental sustainability performance data provided by Deloitte—data that is based upon publicly available information.

Rounding out the automotive brands in this year’s top ten is Volkswagen at number seven. Other automotive brands in the top 50 are: Mercedes-Benz at 17 and Hyundai at 34. Collectively, the heavily regulated auto industry has effectively showcased its innovations and firm commitment to manufacturing vehicles in an increasingly sustainable way. Although most automotive brands have invested in meeting sustainability goals and complying with regulations, those brands that have invested in creating innovative products as evidence of their commitment to sustainability (e.g., Toyota Prius, Ford EcoBoost, Nissan LEAF) are receiving more recognition from consumers.

Toyota, the #1 Best Global Green Brand for the third consecutive year, continues to
dominate the hybrid vehicle market. The company sold more than 2.9 million Prius models worldwide in 2012. Toyota is also exploring the future of mobility by building a low carbon society called Toyota Ecoful Town in Toyota City, Japan. From reducing greenhouse gas emissions to using reusable metal containers for shipping and distribution, Toyota is a leading example of what can result—both in terms of performance and perception—when a company makes sustainability an integral part of its overarching business strategy.

Nissan (#5), the Japanese automaker, emerged as the top riser on this year’s report. The
brand moved up 16 places (from #21) and broke into the top 10. As with other brands in the auto sector, Nissan is becoming increasingly committed to developing and promoting its green credentials. In February, the company announced that 50,000 LEAFs had been produced worldwide, making the LEAF the most widely sold electric passenger car of all time.

Nissan plans to cut 15 percent of vehicle weight starting in 2017, and it has joined forces with Daimler and Ford to develop a line of affordable fuel-cell cars that will roll out in 2017. Reducing vehicle weight through smarter design and material selection, utilizing renewable and sustainable materials, and turning to alternative fuels are just a few of the ways Nissan is making significant strides in the green arena—and proving that sustainability can, in fact, lead to profitability.

The leading auto brands in this year’s report have made significant progress in regards to how their sustainability efforts are perceived by consumers worldwide. From managing to improve their stature on top sustainability reports and indexes, including the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), to investing in advertising spend, these brands are not hesitant to communicate their innovative and sustainable practices to consumers worldwide.