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2010 BEST RESALE VALUE AWARD WINNERS NAMED BY KELLEY BLUE BOOK

Kbb.com Offers Money-Saving Advice for Finding New Vehicles with Minimal Depreciation Ahead

IRVINE, Calif., December 21, 2009 /PRNewswire/ — Kelley Blue Book, www.kbb.com, the leading provider of new- and used-vehicle information, names the all-new 2010 model-year vehicle winners of its annual Best Resale Value Awards, www.kbb.com/BRVA2010, which recognize current and forthcoming vehicles for their projected retained value five years from now. Since depreciation (or loss of value) is typically a car-buyer’s primary expense during ownership, these awards, like all of kbb.com’s new- and used-vehicle information, are designed to help consumers make more informed car-buying decisions.

Kelley Blue Book’s Best Resale Value Awards are based on projections from the Kelley Blue Book® Official Residual Value Guide determined by an expert staff of automotive analysts. These prestigious awards honor vehicles expected to maintain the greatest proportion of their original list price after five years of ownership. Low-volume vehicles and vehicles with a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of more than $60,000 are excluded from award consideration, except in the luxury and high-performance categories.

2010 BEST RESALE VALUE: BRAND
Toyota
2010 BEST RESALE VALUE: LUXURY BRAND
Lexus

2010 BEST RESALE VALUE: BY VEHICLE CATEGORY
MID-SIZE PICKUP:
Toyota Tacoma
HIGH-PERFORMANCE CAR:
Chevrolet Camaro SS
FULL-SIZE PICKUP:
Ford F-Series Super Duty
HYBRID/ALT. FUEL CAR:
Toyota Prius
COMPACT UTILITY VEHICLE:
Honda CR-V
COMPACT CAR:
MINI Cooper Clubman
MID-SIZE UTILITY VEHICLE:
Toyota Highlander
MID-SIZE CAR:
Honda Accord
FULL-SIZE UTILITY VEHICLE:
Honda Pilot
FULL-SIZE CAR:
Ford Taurus
LUXURY UTILITY VEHICLE:
Lexus RX 350
NEAR-LUXURY CAR:
Lexus IS
HYBRID/ALT. FUEL UTILITY VEHICLE:
BMW X5 Turbo Diesel
LUXURY CAR:
Audi A5
VAN:
Toyota Sienna
SPORTS CAR:
Nissan 370Z

2010 BEST RESALE VALUE: TOP 10 MODELS
Audi A5 MINI Cooper
BMW M3 MINI Cooper Clubman
Chevrolet Camaro SS Toyota Prius
Chevrolet Corvette Toyota RAV4
Honda CR-V Toyota Tacoma

(All values based on the November/December 2009 Kelley Blue Book® Residual Value Guide.
Top 10 models appear in alphabetical order).

While most car buyers today consider sticker price one of the most significant numbers when choosing a new vehicle, the editors at Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com recommend that shoppers consider a number they won’t find on any window sticker: its resale value. Depreciation often is the greatest expense incurred by drivers during the first five years of vehicle ownership. An average vehicle will only retain about 35 percent of its original value after a five-year ownership period, meaning that a $50,000 new car today will only be worth somewhere close to $17,500 after five years. Vehicles with average or below-average resale values are generally plentiful in the marketplace and easy to find. But certain vehicles are projected to hold their value better than others. While much of a vehicle’s resale value is based on supply and demand as well as current and projected future market conditions, vehicles that maintain their value best are rarely heavily discounted and tend to generate consumer enthusiasm.

“Especially in today’s difficult economy, when every penny counts for the typical American shopper, consumers should take a good look at the projected resale value of a car when choosing their next new-vehicle purchase,” said James Bell, executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com. “Vehicle depreciation is a new-car buyer’s biggest expense, yet many shoppers don’t realize that resale value information is available for free on Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com. Taking the time to research and choose vehicle makes, models and options wisely now can help new-car shoppers keep additional money in their pocket down the road when they go to sell or trade-in the vehicle.”

Vehicle shoppers should take several factors into consideration when buying a new car to ensure as much future value as possible. Just because a car is expensive or from a luxury brand does not necessarily mean it will hold its value better than an inexpensive car down the road. In fact, because resale values are calculated as a percent of original list price, an expensive vehicle has to command a relatively high price later as a used car to maintain its residual value. For example, an $80,000 vehicle has to be worth $24,000 three years later to have a residual value of 30 percent. Meanwhile, a $12,000 vehicle only needs to be worth $3,600 to have the same 30 percent residual value.

In addition, most options and packages added to a vehicle do not necessarily increase its resale value. However, there are exceptions to the rule, such as a navigation system in a luxury vehicle or a performance package in a sports car. Finally, regional preferences can significantly impact the value of a vehicle. In the colder sections of the country, a two-wheel drive vehicle’s resale value will not be as high as a four-wheel or all-wheel drive option of that same model. At the other end of the thermometer, in warmer climates black (or dark-colored) cars will not have as high resale value as light-colored cars, which tend to be in greater demand in those regions.

While the company’s Residual Value Guide has been published since 1981, Kelley Blue Book established its annual Best Resale Value Awards in 2003. Kelley Blue Book reports projections based on current vehicle data, sales data, market conditions for each vehicle, competition within vehicle segments, expectations of the future economy and the combined experience of Kelley Blue Book’s team of market and pricing analysts. Values reflect projected future auction values for vehicles in average condition with 75,000 miles at the end of a five-year lease or ownership period. Kelley Blue Book’s residual values are used by manufacturers, banks, financial institutions, governmental agencies and the automotive leasing industry.

For more information about Kelley Blue Book’s Best Resale Value Awards, please visit www.kbb.com/BRVA2010.

About Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com)
Since 1926, Kelley Blue Book, The Trusted Resource®, has provided vehicle buyers and sellers with the new and used vehicle information they need to accomplish their goals with confidence. The company’s top-rated Web site, www.kbb.com, provides the most up-to-date pricing and values, including the New Car Blue Book® Value, which reveals what people actually are paying for new cars. The company also reports vehicle pricing and values via products and services, including software products and the famous Blue Book® Official Guide. According to the C.A. Walker Research Solutions, Inc. — 2009 Spring Automotive Web Site Usefulness Study, kbb.com is the most useful automotive information Web site among new and used vehicle shoppers, and half of online vehicle shoppers visit kbb.com. Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com also is a W3 Gold Award winner, sanctioned by the International Academy of Visual Arts. Kbb.com is a leading provider of new car prices, car reviews and news, used car Blue Book Values, auto classifieds and car dealer locations. No other medium reaches more in-market vehicle shoppers than kbb.com.