BMW’s gotten a lot of attention recently, much of it for its polarizing changes to its iconic split kidney grille. However, if all publicity is good publicity is true, then it’s working for BMW as it’s the most popular car brand on TikTok.
The brand’s garnered 17.6 billion views in the first quarter of 2021, which is well ahead of the 9.1 billion views its top luxury rival, Mercedes-Benz, received during the same time frame. Lamborghini, Tesla and Audi wrapped up the top five on the list, according to the TikTok Motor Index.
While BMW may be the most popular brand on TikTok, the venerable Ford Mustang is far and away the social media outlet’s most popular vehicle. The muscle car icon attracted 3.9 billion views during Q1 — besting the Nissan GT-R and Toyota Supra by more than 1 billion views.
“The longest-serving car in Ford’s lineup, the Mustang has been a mainstay since 1964 and is clearly still as popular today as it ever was, proving to be a hit on social media,” according to the index.
Considering it’s been the world’s best-selling sports coupe for six consecutive years, it’s popularity on TikTok may not be all that much of a surprise.
American cars fare about the same as American brands
In the top 10 brand list, there were only three U.S. brands: Tesla at No. 4, Ford at No. 6 and Jeep which finished tied for 10th. When it came to individual vehicles, there were three in the top 10: the aforementioned Mustang in the top spot with the Chevrolet Camaro in fourth place and the Tesla Model 3 at No. 10.
Japanese vehicles and Lamborghini — the only company with two vehicles in the top 10 — filled out the list. The two Lambos? Huracan with 916.7 million views and Aventador with 808.8 million. The Nissan GT-R and the Toyota Supra by a pretty small margin as they both logged 2.8 billion views during the period.
Camaro was further off the pace, tied for fourth with the Range Rover at 1.5 billion views. Honda Civic came in sixth with 1.3 billion and the Subaru WRX was eighth at 851.6 million rounding out the top 10.
Automakers on TikTok?
Although the app, which basically started in 2016 and grew from there, is thought by many to be the domain of the “young,” BMW and many other automakers have been very active on the app, looking to build some buzz — and potential brand loyalty down the road — with its prominence on the app.
BMW often creates hashtag challenges to promote their vehicles, essentially starting with its #THE1challenge to highlight the brand’s 1 Series.
TikTok users were challenged to demonstrate their best dance moves to the pulsating music by the artist Big Gigantic. The automaker used social media influencers with extensive reach to hype the #THE1challenge with specially created dance moves filmed in typical TikTok style and inspired by the new BMW 1 Series.
Ford has the latest hashtag challenge on TikTok with the new Maverick. The new compact pickup kicked off the automaker’s new TikTok channel in June. It started with an AR challenging users to put the new truck in a variety of places it could be used — and some places it would be unexpected.
Shortly after #FordMaverick showed up in posts across the app — whether or not the AR was being used.