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Automotive Lease Guide Selects Honda for Top Awards

November 20, 2008

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- American Honda Motor Company took top honors in the Automotive Lease Guide's (ALG) 10th annual Residual Value Awards, winning both the overall Industry and the Luxury Brand Awards. The awards are based on 2009 model year vehicles.

Each year ALG honors vehicles in each segment that are predicted to retain the highest percentage of their original price after a conventional three-year lease term.

For the seventh year, ALG has also included awards for the brands that have the highest overall predicted resale values among all industry and all luxury vehicles. The awards are derived after carefully studying segment competition, historical vehicle performance and industry trends. The list of winners can be found on www.alg.com.

For the sixth consecutive year, American Honda Motor Company, Inc. has won the Industry Brand Residual Value Award. Honda also received individual segment awards for the Accord in the Midsize Car category, and the Honda Fit in the Compact Car category.

In addition, Acura, Honda's luxury division, has won the overall Luxury Brand Residual Value Award for the first time. Although Acura does not have any segment winners, all of its vehicles' residual values are relatively strong, with the new TL and TSX ranking among the highest in their segments.

Toyota Motor Sales USA again received the most segment Residual Value Awards. The Toyota brand received four awards, for the Sequoia (Large Utility Vehicle); the Tacoma (Compact/Midsize Pickup); the Sienna (Minivan); and the Prius (Hybrid/Alternative Powertrain -- in the first year for that category). In addition, Toyota's Lexus LS460 received the Luxury Car award, while the Scion XB won in the Mid-Compact Car category.

Nissan received three segment awards, for the Maxima (Fullsize Car); the GT-R (Luxury Sports Car); and the Murano (Midsize Utility Vehicle). BMW won two awards, for the Mini Cooper (Sporty Car) and the BMW 1 Series (Near Luxury Car). Land Rover also received two segment awards, for the Range Rover Sport (Luxury Utility Vehicle) and the LR2 (Near Luxury Utility Vehicle).

Among domestic manufacturers, the Jeep Wrangler won the segment award for Compact Utility Vehicles for the third consecutive year, although it is sharing the award this year with the Subaru Forester, a first time winner. The Ford F-150 received the award for Fullsize Light Duty Pickups, while the Dodge Sprinter won in the Commercial -- Specialty segment, a new category this year.

"In these unprecedented times -- between volatile gas prices and the turmoil in the credit and financial markets -- consistently achieving strong residual values has become a monumental challenge for auto manufacturers," said John Blair, chief executive officer of Automotive Lease Guide.

"While a number of companies again performed well, Honda clearly set itself apart this year by winning both the overall Industry and the Luxury Brand Awards, as its Acura division jumped to the top spot from fourth place a year ago. The Honda and Acura brands both benefit from an extremely disciplined approach to vehicle production, combined with consistent high quality and effective pricing strategies. Residual value remains the best metric for evaluating the overall strength of an automotive brand, and we congratulate all of this year's winners for their successful products and marketing strategies," Blair added.

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