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Fact Sheet: What are Automakers Trying to Sell? Fuel Economy and Safety Take a Back Seat

The U.S. auto industry invests heavily in advertising, spending nearly $14 billion per year between 2008 and 2014. Two automakers — Ford and General Motors — were among the top 10 advertisers in the United States in 2016, and the automotive industry was second only to retail in spending on digital advertising in 2018. A new study examines the messages automakers are sending consumers through those dollars.