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Personal Finance > Autos

Honda has best retained value
Study: US automakers shut out of top spots for best retained value in different vehicle categories.
December 8, 2004: 1:36 PM EST

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Honda is again the best brand for retaining value for new cars and trucks, while U.S. brands were shut out of the top spots, according to a firm that tracks vehicle value for the industry.

Automotive Lease Guide. a privately held company that has been forecasting automotive residual values for more than 35 years, gave the top spot to Honda (Research) for the second straight year, as the Odyssey won the award for best retained value in the minivan segment and its CR-V won in the compact sport/utility vehicle segment.

Residual value is closely related to resale value, but the latter is more of a retail price measure while residual value is more of a reading on wholesale price.

Honda Motor is makes both the Honda and Acura brands, the latter of which came in third among luxury brands. In addition to the overall company being ranked No. 1, the Honda brand is the top brand for residual value. Toyota is No. 2 and Nissan No. 3, followed by Volkswagen. Jeep, a brand of DaimlerChrysler, is the best traditional U.S. brand at No. 5. Most U.S. brands were ranked below average in retained value, as were the two major Korean brands, Hyundai and Kia, as well as the small Japanese brands.

Toyota Motor Corp. (Research) won four individual segments, as the Tacoma had the best retained value among compact trucks, the Sequoia was tops among fullsize SUVs, the 4Runner for the midsize SUV Segment, and the Tundra for fullsize trucks.

Nissan Motor Co. (Research) won the midsize car segment award for the Altima, displacing Honda's Accord, which took that segment award last year. The Infiniti G35, also produced by Nissan Motors, won the near luxury segment.

German automakers took the award for best retained value for the more expensive models, as BMW was the best luxury brand overall, although the Mercedes CLK had the best retained value of any one luxury model. Mercedes is a unit of DaimlerChrysler (Research), which also owns Chrysler Group.

The Mercedes SLK also won the sports car segment award, while the Cooper Mini, which is made by BMW, had the best retained value of any compact car for the third year in a row.

The closest a U.S. brand came to winning an award is Swedish automaker Volvo, owned by Ford Motor Co. (Research), which took the award for best retained value among crossover utility vehicles for its XC90.

Automotive Lease Guide's data is used by the automakers when calculating the expected value of vehicles they lease out to customers.

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"In an era of heavy incentives and discounts, Residual Value excellence becomes more difficult to achieve," said ALG CEO John Blair. "Both the segment and brand winners clearly demonstrate that quality products combined with effective pricing strategies will rise to the top of the charts."

The only good news for U.S. automakers in the report was that, "the gaps have tightened in all award categories," Blair said.  Top of page

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