Tesla, BMW and Mercedes, the most profitable manufacturers in 2021 – L’argus PRO

The study published by the firm EY, which analyzed the annual reports of the 16 main global manufacturers, reveals that the cumulative profitability (Ebit margin) of these groups has reached its highest historical level in the last ten years. This stood at 8.5%, “nearly 5 percentage points more than the previous year. Before that, it had been in constant decline for three successive years, falling from 6.3% in 2017 to only 3.5% in 2020”, points out EY. In 2021, Tesla is the brand with the highest Ebit margin (12.1%), followed by BMW (12%) and Mercedes-Benz (12%). The Alliance brands, which had suffered losses in 2020, fell back into the green last year, however posting lower profitability: 2% for Nissan, 2.4% for Mitsubishi and 3% for Renault.

2021 financial results for car manufacturers
The Ebit margin of car manufacturers in 2021


TO READ. Renault is on the road to profits again in 2021

An operating result (Ebit) at its highest

Another indicator analyzed by the firm EY, the operating profit of the 16 manufacturers, which amounted to 134.2 billion euros in 2021, increased by 168% compared to 2020, i.e. a gain of 84.1 Billions of Euro’s. This is also the highest level observed over the last decade, exceeding by 34% the record amount of 2017 (€100.08 billion). The 16 major manufacturers all posted an increase in operating incomethe most significant jump going to Tesla (+ 234%). “Records in terms of Ebit have been recorded by German and American manufacturers. For manufacturers in other countries, this remained below the previous highs”, underlines the cabinet. Toyota is the manufacturer that recorded the highest operating profit, at 24.8 billion euros, ahead of Volkswagen (19.3 billion euros) and Mercedes-Benz (16.03 billion euros).

The operating results of the main automakers in 2021


TO READ. Stellantis. Record financial results, rewarded employees

A rising turnover for the 16 manufacturers

In 2021, the cumulative revenue of the 16 manufacturers (at constant exchange rates) increased by 11.6% compared to 2020 (+€164 billion), standing at €1,578 billion. “However, it remains down 5.4% compared to the record level of 2019”says EY. The Volkswagen group* is the one with the highest turnover (€250.2 billion), ahead of Toyota (€238.4 billion). The most significant increase goes to Tesla (+71%), followed by Mitsubishi (+24%), Kia and Suzuki (+18%). Stellantis (+1%) and General Motors (+4%) posted the smallest increases. The three German manufacturers have achieved double-digit sales growth. Cumulatively, it reached 495.3 billion euros, the third highest level ever reached.

Study firm EY car manufacturers
The turnover of the main car manufacturers in 2021

Finally, despite the health crisis and especially the shortage of semiconductors and raw materials, the 16 largest car manufacturers marketed 762,000 vehicles (cars and utilities) more than in 2020 (+ 1.2%), totaling 63.45 million units in 2021. Ten of the sixteen groups analyzed recorded growth in sales.

TO READ. Toyota king of the automotive world in 2021



EY advises that Volkswagen’s turnover and operating income are presented excluding Chinese joint ventures, which are consolidated using the equity method.

Leave a Comment