According to a report from Automotive News, BMW has managed to replace Toyota as the world's most valuable car marque, even though the German automaker saw its brand's worth decline last year. The article sites a study by Millward Brown called the BrandZ Top 100. On the heels of Toyota's recent recall troubles, the company's value declined by 27 percent to a shade under $21.8 billion. Meanwhile, the BMW drop was much less at just nine percent, putting its total value at $21.8 billion even.

Despite Toyota's stumble, researches at Millward Brown seem to think the brand will be back on top of its game before too long. A spokesperson said that the carmaker's aggressive work to rebuild its reputation is already underway and should do much to restore the company's global standing.

Meanwhile, automakers like Ford and Volkswagen made progress on improving their own brand value thanks to investments in entertainment and emissions technologies. Those companies are both valued at around $7 billion.

The Automotive News report also pointed out that high-end automakers like Porsche and Mercedes-Benz suffered the most from the economic downturn, with those brands seeing their value decline by 31 percent and 11 percent, respectively.

Interested in seeing Millward Brown's complete study results, including brand values for non-automotive businesses? Click here for the full report of everything from beer to apparel to gas companies.

[Sources: Automotive News, Millward Brown]