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U.S. automotive advertising - statistics & facts

In the 2020 ranking of the top automobile manufacturers by advertising spending in the United States, General Motors, a Detroit-based company known for several brands such as Chevrolet, Cadillac, and Buick, ranked first. General Motors’ advertising spending in the United States amounted to 2.22 billion U.S dollars in 2020, down from a record-high of 3.77 billion dollars in 2016. Also based in the Detroit area, Ford Motor Company was the third largest advertiser in the country that year. Stellantis, a multinational auto maker formed by UK's Fiat Automobiles and French PSA Group, ranked fourth that year, with a total ad spend of 1.54 billion U.S. dollars, investing an average of 78 U.S. dollars on advertising per each Dodge vehicle sold that year.

Carmakers spending on advertising

Carmakers are some of the major spenders in the advertising market in the U.S., but they are not the only ones within the automotive industry. Advertising expenditure of the automotive rental and leasing industry was estimated at more than 185 million U.S. dollars in 2020, whereas automotive dealers and gas stations were projected to spend about 1.2 billion U.S. dollars that year.

Automotive TV advertising

Television is the second biggest advertising medium in the United States, and TV still remains an important platform for automobile advertisers. Ford, Subaru, Lexus, and Nissan are some of the main names within the industry that have invested in TV advertising in 2021. The Super Bowl, one of the most watched TV programs of all time in the U.S., is a major event for automobile manufacturers as they spend millions of dollars in Super Bowl ads each year.

Digital advertising among carmakers

Despite the importance of TV in the advertising industry in the U.S., the medium has been losing space in the ad market to digital platforms. In line with this trend, auto advertisers have also shifted their investments to digital platforms. The automobile industry accounted for 4.7 percent of digital advertising revenue in the country in 2021. The digital ad revenue in the U.S. automotive sector is expected to grow to about 19 billion U.S. dollars by 2023, from 15 billion dollars in 2021.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 28 most important statistics relating to "Automotive advertising in the U.S.".


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