Luxury auto brands lead the pack, and Coach tops Prada, but Hilton leads the pack when it comes to hotels.

The Luxury Society and Digital Luxury Group just published the results of a research initiative to answer a key question: “Which were the most-searched for luxury brands on search engines in the United States in 2011?”

Automotive brands came out on top, with 6 of the top-10 overall being car brands. BMW was #1, Audi #2, and Lexus #7 overall. (USA’s Cadillac came in at #10.)

The hotel results were a bit odd, probably because it depends on how you define a luxury brand. I would consider most of the following to be routine business hotels rather than luxury hotels, but that’s me. Aspirational consumers probably feel differently. Still, it’s surprising to see this list missing true luxury brands like Four Seasons, Ritz-Carlton, Banyan Tree, Rosewood, and Aman Resorts. I suppose their U.S. footprints are just too small to make an impact in a country where the majority doesn’t travel internationally—ever.

But hey, Armani showed up at #47, so searches and mindshare are not necessarily related. See the full article here.

6.  Hilton Hotels

15. Sheraton

17. Wyndham

 

21. Renaissance

24. Westin

26. W Hotels

29. Intercontinental

42. Loew’s

48. Omni Hotels

50. Fairmont

The study was based on 470 million searches. In percentage terms, hotel searches were 13% of the total, behind cars and fashion.