Several carmakers made it to Boston Consulting Group's 50 Most Innovative Companies ranking in 2012. Ten of the 50 available slots were captured by carmakers like Hyundai, Toyota, Ford, Kia, BMW and Volkswagen. According to the 2012 ranking, which resulted from a poll among senior executives around the world, Hyundai and Toyota came on top among the carmakers. Hyundai jumped 12 places overall in the ranking and was able to get ahead of Toyota. Ford and Kia were third and fourth among carmakers that made it to the 2012 ranking. Kia was a surprise entry, since it was not on the list of the 50 Most Innovative Companies in the 2010 survey, the last time the ranking was published. Only BMW -- which was fifth among carmakers -- and Toyota were featured in the rankings since its inception in 2005. VW, however, suffered a bad fall as it dropped from 15th overall in 2010 to 45th this year.
Absent from the list were Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler, and Japanese carmaker Honda. This was the first time that Honda did not make the list. Overall, Apple was adjudged as the most innovative company in 2012, followed by Google and Samsung. Hadi Zablit, managing director of BCG Paris and co-author of the report, described innovation as bringing something new to the market that is accepted and monetized by the customer.
She told Automotive News Europe that high-placed carmakers were likely to offer innovative products like hybrid/electric powertrains or low-cost vehicles. She added that innovative processes and a unique customer experience are also important. BCG surveyed 1,512 senior executives around the world, of which 54 worked for carmakers.