Kelley Blue Book Announces Winners of 2008 Brand Image Awards

Awards Honor Top New-Auto Brands Based on Consumer Perception Data from KBB Marketing Research


Kelley Blue Book (, the leading provider of new- and used-vehicle information, today announced the winners of the 2008 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards. The Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards recognize automakers' outstanding achievements in creating and maintaining brand attributes that capture the attention and enthusiasm of the new-vehicle buying public.

The 2008 Brand Image Awards are based on consumer automotive perception data from Kelley Blue Book Marketing Research's Brand Watch study. Brand Watch is an online brand perception tracking study tapping into 12,000+ in-market new-vehicle shoppers annually on The highly comprehensive Brand Watch report provides a detailed look at in-market new-vehicle shoppers' perceptions of brands, and important factors driving their purchase decisions while they are in the midst of the shopping process. The results of an entire year of Brand Watch research and consumer opinions determine the 2008 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Award winners.

Kelley Blue Book handed out 17 awards to automotive brands in the following categories during a gala event this evening amidst the festivities of the New York International Auto Show Media Preview Week in New York City:


  Best Interior Design -- Non-Luxury Sedan/Coupe/Hatchback: Toyota
  Best Interior Design -- Luxury Sedan/Coupe/Hatchback: Lexus
  Best Interior Design -- Sports Car/Convertible: Mercedes-Benz
  Best Interior Design -- Truck: Chevrolet
  Best Interior Design -- Non-Luxury SUV: Toyota
  Best Interior Design -- Luxury SUV: Lexus
  Best Interior Design -- Minivan: Honda

  Best Exterior Design -- Non-Luxury Sedan/Coupe/Hatchback: Chrysler
  Best Exterior Design -- Luxury Sedan/Coupe/Hatchback: BMW
  Best Exterior Design -- Sports Car/Convertible: Porsche
  Best Exterior Design -- Truck: Chevrolet
  Best Exterior Design -- Non-Luxury SUV: Ford
  Best Exterior Design -- Luxury SUV: Mercedes-Benz
  Best Exterior Design -- Minivan: Toyota

                   Best Overall Interior Design: Toyota
                    Best Overall Exterior Design: BMW
                Best Overall Prestige Brand: Mercedes-Benz

"The Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards honor the automakers that stand out in the ongoing heated battle for consumer perception," said Rick Wainschel, vice president of marketing research and brand communications for Kelley Blue Book and "While specific vehicle models may come and go over the years, the power of the brand is lasting in the minds of consumers."

The most prestigious honors from Brand Watch include Best Interior and Exterior Styling, as well as Best Overall Prestige Brand. Based on the results of the Brand Watch study, consumers rated Mercedes-Benz as Best Overall Prestige Brand. With the company's long history of combining rich interiors with distinguished exterior styling, the brand is known not only as a preeminent luxury automaker, but also one of the foremost luxury brands in the world.

BMW captured the award for having Best Overall Exterior Design. Its once-controversial new designs are now winning legions of fans, and the company has maintained a family resemblance across the board while allowing each model to take the design theme in a slightly different direction. Toyota garnered Best Overall Interior Design with its vehicles' simple, familiar and consistently gratifying fit, finish and materials used across its vehicle line-up.

"Understanding brand perception is important to gauging vehicle value," said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst of Kelley Blue Book and "Because brand is so important to consumers as they decide which vehicles they are considering and, ultimately, what vehicles they will buy, it is important to study their perceptions of various brands, the attributes that contribute to those perceptions, and how those perceptions shift over time."

For more information about the 2008 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards, please visit

For Brand Watch sales inquiries on any vehicle segment or brand, please contact Kelly Gim, director of marketing research services at 949-268-2756 or

About Kelley Blue Book (

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,, 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. is rated the No. 1 automotive information site by Nielsen//NetRatings and the most visited auto site by J.D. Power and Associates eight years in a row. No other medium reaches more in-market vehicle shoppers than; nearly one in every three American car buyers performs their research on

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