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<TABLE border=0 width=649><TBODY><TR><TD colSpan=7><TABLE border=0 cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=649><TBODY><TR><TD>U.S. Auto Makers Score Most Wins in Meeting Consumer Expectations According to AutoPacific's 2009 Ideal Vehicle Awards


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</TD></TR><TR><TD style="WIDTH: 645px" colSpan=3><LINK rel=stylesheet type=text/css href="StyleSheet.css"><STORYCONTENT>Survey of 32,000 Consumers Reveals Vehicles that Meet or Exceed Expectations

<LOCATION>TUSTIN, Calif.</LOCATION>, <CHRON>June 29</CHRON> /PRNewswire/ -- Porsche and Ford Motor Company earned top honors in the 2009 Ideal Vehicle Awards (IVA), announced today by automotive research firm AutoPacific. The IVAs are based on owners' ratings of their new 2009 model year cars and trucks across 15 key vehicle attributes. The cars or trucks that owners would change the least are the most ideal.


"In today's economy, car buyers take many factors into consideration - styling, safety features, fuel economy and more," says
George Peterson</PERSON>, president of AutoPacific. "IVA winners deliver the most of what consumers are really looking for in their vehicles."

"While some measurements barely differentiate between the highest and lowest-ranked vehicles, the Ideal Vehicle Awards clearly show which carmakers are providing the attributes car buyers want," says Peterson. "Looking at segment wins and top overall honors, shoppers can use the IVAs as a benchmark for vehicles that are designed and built with customers just like them in mind. In fact, AutoPacific owner research also shows that IVA-winning vehicles achieve higher overall satisfaction from their owners."

For 2009, the top-rated premium brand is Porsche, outscoring Buick and Jaguar for the most ideal premium vehicle brand honors. The top-rated mainstream brand is Ford, outscoring Mercury for top mainstream brand results. Porsche and Ford were also the highest scoring premium and mainstream brands in the 2008 IVA rankings.

The top-rated vehicle overall is the Honda Odyssey minivan, which beat out the next-highest rated vehicle, the Toyota Venza, from the premium mid-size crossover SUV segment. Rounding out the top five were three Ford Motor Company products: the Ford F-150 large pickup, followed by the Ford Taurus and the Lincoln Town Car, both in the large car segment.

Ford Motor Company leads the industry with a total of five segment winners. Hyundai/Kia and Toyota/Lexus each had three segment winners, with Chrysler, General Motors and Honda bringing in two wins each.

Of the twenty-three Ideal Vehicle Award (IVA) categories, American brands have nine segment winners, Japanese brands seven, European brands four, and Korean brands have three segment winners.

The top-rated product segment is Large Car, beating out last year's leading category, Large Crossover SUV. American buyers continue to value large, comfortable vehicles suitable for suburban driving and longer distance highway cruising.

SUV Subaru Forester Compact Crossover SUV Kia Sportage Minivan Honda Odyssey


<TABLE style="WIDTH: 260pt; BORDER-COLLAPSE: collapse" border=0 cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=347><COLGROUP><COL style="WIDTH: 260pt; mso-width-source: userset; mso-width-alt: 12690" width=347><TBODY><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; WIDTH: 260pt; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21 width=347>2009 Ideal Premium Brand: Porsche</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>2009 Ideal Mainstream Brand: Ford</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>2009 Ideal Product Segment: Large Car</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15pt" height=20><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" height=20></TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>2009 Ideal Vehicle Award Winners:</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15pt" height=20><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" height=20></TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl66 height=21>Passenger Cars:</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Premium Luxury Car--->Lexus LS</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Aspirational Luxury Car---> Hyundai Genesis</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Large Car---> Ford Taurus</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Luxury Mid-Size Car--->Lexus ES350</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Premium Mid-Size Car--->Saturn Aura</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Mid-Size Car---> Volkswagen Jetta</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Image Compact Car---> MINI Cooper</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Compact Car---> Hyundai Elantra</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Economy Car---> Honda Fit</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Sports Car--->Porsche 911</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Sporty Car--->Dodge Challenger</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15pt" height=20><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" height=20></TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl66 height=21>Pickups, SUVs and Minivans</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Large Pickup---> Ford F-150</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Compact Pickup---> Ford Explorer Sport Trac</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Luxury Sport Utility--->Lincoln Navigator</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Large Sport Utility--->Nissan Armada</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Premium Mid-Size Sport Utility ---> Ford Explorer</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Mid-Size Sport Utility---> Jeep Liberty</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Luxury Crossover SUV--->BMW X5</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Large Crossover SUV--->Chevrolet Traverse</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV Toyota Venza</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Mid-Size Crossover SUV---> Subaru Forester</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Compact Crossover SUV---> Kia Sportage</TD></TR><TR style="HEIGHT: 15.75pt" height=21><TD style="BORDER-BOTTOM: #f0f0f0; BORDER-LEFT: #f0f0f0; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent; HEIGHT: 15.75pt; BORDER-TOP: #f0f0f0; BORDER-RIGHT: #f0f0f0" class=xl65 height=21>Minivan---> Honda Odyssey</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>

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Continued...
 

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Mercury C557
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Ford tops in quality survey - RDA Group via DetNews


RDA Group: Ford tops in quality survey
- DetNews

Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Bryce G. Hoffman / The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co.'s newest automobiles had fewer problems than any other manufacturer -- including Toyota Motor Corp. -- according to a new survey of initial quality, details of which were obtained by The Detroit News.

It was the first time ever that the Dearborn automaker beat its arch-rival in the survey, which was conducted for Ford by the RDA Group of Bloomfield Hills. The study also put Ford in a dead heat with Toyota in customer satisfaction.

"We've been tied with Toyota before, but it sure feels better to be on the top!" wrote Bennie Fowler, Ford's global head of quality, in a memo to employees Friday, a copy of which was obtained by The News. "We can all be pleased with the progress we have made in quality, even as we face external and internal challenges in a tumultuous climate. Our progress has come as the result of our union partnerships in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, along with the work of dedicated teams in manufacturing, product development, purchasing, marketing, sales, service, legal, IT and others who follow disciplined, standardized processes."

RDA's research is used by a number of automakers, both foreign and domestic, and has historically tracked closely with other independent research by firms such as J.D. Power and Associates. Its second quarter study showed new Ford, Mercury and Lincoln cars and trucks had 1,185 issues per 1,000 vehicles. Toyota had 1,215 problems, while Honda Motor Co. had 1,291.

Both Toyota and Ford had an 80 percent positive customer satisfaction rating, Fowler said.

The results come a year after he vowed publicly to seize Toyota's crown as the quality leader among full-line manufacturers in the United States. But Ford has found that its quality gains have still not convinced all consumers that its products are on par with those from its Japanese competitors.

Fowler said more work is needed, particularly on the luxury brand, which faces even tougher competition.

"There is more work to be done," he said." We want nothing less than to be the highest-quality automotive manufacturer year over year!"
 

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Mercury C557
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Focus & C30 = Best, per IIHS

Crash tests of 2-door cars: Volvo & Ford Coupes earn Top Safety - IIHS

News Release | July 21, 2009
...Focus and C30 are best in group of 5: Earning good ratings in all 3 of the Institute's tests and equipped with optional electronic stability control, the Focus qualifies as a 2009 Top Safety Pick among small cars. Also earning this award is the midsize Volvo C30. Seven small cars and 10 midsize moderately priced models now earn the award, the Institute's top safety designation. The list of winners makes it easier for consumers to zero in on vehicles in each class that afford the best overall crash protection.
 
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