Who ACTUALLY Made Your Car? | WheelHouse


– Your favorite car company might be owned by a different car company, and you don’t even know it. (upbeat music) Jeep? Owned. Acura? Owned. Chevy? Come on, owned. So the question is, who owns who? Or is it whom? Most every car company nowadays is owned by a bigger corporation. In fact, only 15
corporations around the world own most of the cars manufactured today. We’re seeing fewer and fewer
independent car manufacturers, and that can be both good and bad. Let’s start with one of
the biggest companies out there, General Motors. Nowadays, they rake in more
than $145 billion annually. But GM wasn’t always so successful. They started as a holding company, which, in its simplest form, is a company that buys other companies. Their first acquisition
was Buick back in 1907. And soon after, they acquired Oldsmobile, Cadillac, and the Rapid
Motor Vehicle Company, which later became GMC. In 1918, they acquired Chevrolet, a brand that would grow to become one of GM’s biggest breadwinners. It’s not just American brands though. GM also owns Chinese manufacturers Wuling, Baojun, and Jiefang, Just a disclaimer, there’s gonna be a lot more Chinese names, and I’m probably gonna butcher those too. This show ain’t vegan cause
I’m butchering everything. Uh! That’s stupid. Other car companies within the GM family include Holden, Saab, Opel and Daewoo. Of those, only Holden and Opel
are still manufacturing cars. And I should note that Opel
is no longer owned by GM, but by another group, called PSA. The PSA group is a French
multinational corporation that owns Opel, Peugeot,
Citroen, Vauxhall, and the premium mark DS. They once owned Chrysler Europe, which they bought in 1978 for $1. If given the chance to
buy Chrysler for $1, I’m not sure I would have
made the same decision. PSA makes upwards of $75 billion annually, making them the largest French
automobile manufacturer. But right below them is Renault. (upbeat music) Renault does 58 billion annually, but they’re part of a bigger group named the
Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, I love the word alliance. Although they’re not technically a merger, they kind of operate as one. Renault has a 43% stake in Nissan, Nissan has a 15% stake in Renault, and a 34% stake in Mitsubishi. This umbrella group is the
parent company of Infiniti, Datsun, Dacia, AvtoVAZ, Alpina,
and the defunct brand Lada. All in all, the
Renault-Nissan-Mitsubish Alliance brings in $190 billion in annual sales, making them the number 3
top auto manufacturing group in the world. So what does this all
mean for the consumer? Well, big car companies make it possible to buy a car for cheap. Right now, you can buy a Nissan Versa for $13,000 brand new. But, it probably cost Nissan hundreds of millions of dollars
to develop the dang thing. A car company that’s just
starting to get off the ground can’t afford to sell a car that cost them hundreds of millions of
dollars for that cheap. But Nissan can. The profit margin on
economy cars is razor thin, but Nissan sells millions
of Versas to make up for it. It’s also easier to mass produce parts that can be installed in
many different models, versus developing a
car from the ground up. You’ve probably heard of a car company going to their parts bin, right? One downside of this is that cars can all start looking the same, or at least feeling the same. Using Nissan as an example, the GTR, a $200,000 supercar,
might share parts with much, much cheaper cars in their lineup. Chrysler merged with Italian
car manufacturer Fiat back in 2014 to form Fiat
Chrysler Automobiles, or FCA. The merger had been
underway since Chrysler announced bankruptcy in April of 2009, but it wasn’t finalized
until 5 years later. This group is responsible
for $111 billion dollars in sales per year, and is made up of many
smaller subsidiaries. Chrysler owns Jeep, Dodge and Ram, but they’re also the parent
company of other defunct brands, such as AMC, Eagle and Plymouth. Fiat owns Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Lancia, and has a 90% stake in Ferrari. (metal music) You know that guy in high school who always had a girlfriend? That’s Chrysler. But now he’s declaring bankruptcy. But also has a hot Italian wife. Anyway, the name Daimler
has been around since 1880, but it wasn’t until 1926
that they merged with Benz to become Daimler Benz, and started producing the Mercedes Marks. As a conglomerate, they’re responsible for over
$188 billion in annual sales, all across the world. These numbers are getting so
big they’re losing meaning. They own Mercedes Benz, Smart,
and the now defunct Maybech, along with Chinese
companies Denza and BAIC. Although they’re often
in the same category, BMW makes around $75
billion less than Mercedes, coming in at just under
$113 billion a year. Wow, BMW, you suck. Bayerische Motoren Werke owns
Mini as well as Rolls Royce, and I’m pretty sure I
butchered that name too. (upbeat music) Toyota’s another company
that’s got their hands in a bunch of different cookie jars. They took in almost
$261 billion last year, with their brands Lexus, Hino Motors, Daihatsu, three more Chinese companies, as well as the defunct Scion brand. They also own a 5.9% stake in Isuzu, and 16.6% of Suburu. And that’s how you get
nearly identical cars, like the Toyota 86, the Suburu
BRZ, and the Scion FR-S. They share a lot of the same parts, and are essentially the same car. Surprisingly, Toyota’s largest
Japanese competitor, Honda, makes about half as much as
they do, at $139 billion, with Acura being the only
other car badge they own. South Korea based Hyundai
owns Kia and Genesis, and pulls in almost $86 billion a year. The Tata Group, based
out of Mumbai, India, pulls in a cool $100 billion in sales through their brands Jaguar, Land Rover, and of course, Tata. The only Chinese group that
makes this list is Geely. The group has been around since 1986, and really only entered the
automobile market in 1997, making them one of the newest, and most successful, car
manufacturers to date. This group owns Chinese
brands Geely ad Lynk, as well as Lotus, Volvo, and Proton. They bring in about $15
billion a year in sales. The only two brands on this
list that are independent are Suzuki, based out of Japan, and relative newcomer Tesla. They do about $34 billion and $12 billion in sales respectively. Suzuki has been around for over 100 years, and their profits rely heavily on their motorcycles and ATV sales. Tesla’s only been around since 2003, so how are they able to
roll with the big boys? Tesla’s business strategy was to sell their high-end, electric cars, to a more affluent crowd at first. More expensive vehicles have
a much higher profit margin, so less sales are needed
to make the money back. Then, when they become
more financially stable, they were able to release
models that were more affordable to a broader consumer base. So the sales of higher end models bankrolled the RnD for their
people’s car, the Model 3. Basically, it was the
opposite business model for Volkswagen, which
happens to be the number one highest producing conglomerate in the entire automotive industry. (car tires squeal) The Volkswagen group is
made up of Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen, Bentley, Bugatti,
Seat, Skoda and Lamborghini, as well as other smaller subsidiaries. They raked in over $278 billion in 2018, and employ over 630,000 people
in 153 countries worldwide. They produced 10,083,000
vehicles last year. Sure, your favorite brand might be owned by some bigger, most
likely more boring brand, but don’t let that discourage you. Because without that helping hand, your favorite rides might
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