In America, people generally view Apple as the most powerful brand in the world, but they'd be mistaken. According to the BrandFinance Global 500, Ferrari took top honors, with Apple in second and Samsung in a close third. 

What we Americans often forget is that not only is Ferrari the best known carmaker in the world, but it also runs the most iconic team in the world's most watched sport: Formula 1. The sport has a viewership of 527 million people as of 2010, which means that about one in every 13 people watches the sport. 

The fact that the Italian automaker has also had several consecutive record years didn't hurt either.

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[via BrandFinance