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Kelley Blue Book Names Brand Image Winners

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author photo by Jeffrey Archer April 2012
  • KBB announced winners in 12 categories
  • Ford took home four awards - the most of any automaker
  • Cadillac, Porsche and Honda each scored two awards apiece

Kelley Blue Book recently announced the winners of its fifth annual Brand Image Awards, which honor the top automotive brands in 12 separate categories as rated by car shoppers. This year's big winner was Ford, which took home four awards, while Honda, Cadillac and Porsche each topped two categories apiece.

According to the awards, which are based on in-market car shopper perception data from KBB's Brand Watch study, Ford can officially boast the best exterior and interior design of any non-luxury automaker. Ford also picked up the award for the most family-friendly brand, and topped the study among the most rugged truck brands. That makes Ford this year's most heavily awarded brand - an impressive prize likely prompted by the automaker's recent focus on exciting new products and in-car technology.

Several high-end brands also took home awards this year, with Cadillac winning for best interior design among luxury brands and best comfort brand. Porsche was awarded titles for coolest brand and best performance brand, while BMW was honored as the luxury brand with the best exterior design. Mercedes also secured an award as the most prestigious brand, which is a title the automaker has taken each year since the Brand Image Awards were first doled out in 2008.

The only other brand honored in this year's Brand Image Awards was Honda, which topped two categories: best value brand and most trusted brand. According to Kelley Blue Book, Honda earned those awards through years of building trust with strong resale values, exceptional quality and a reputation for impressive reliability.

"Image isn't everything, but it is more than enough to get shoppers into the store, and that's half the battle for automakers and their dealers," said Jack Nerad, executive editorial director for Kelley Blue Book's kbb.com. "With standout vehicles, memorable marketing and positive word of mouth, the winners of Kelley Blue Book's 2012 Brand Image Awards have secured enviable positions in the minds of in-market shoppers."

According to Kelley Blue Book, the Brand Watch study is a survey of more than 12,000 in-market new vehicle shoppers conducted annually on the firm's kbb.com website. KBB says the survey provides an important insight into the factors driving shoppers' purchase decisions and their perception of brands.

What it means to you: The KBB Brand Image Awards are a great way to gauge which brands are scoring highly with car buyers.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Kelley Blue Book Names Brand Image Winners - Autotrader