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2009 Chicago Auto Show: Announces Best Overall Value of the Year Awards for 2009 Cars, Trucks, Crossovers and SUVs

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CHICAGO February 12, 2009:, the leading source for automotive ownership cost and value analysis, and part of media and marketing services company Source Interlink Companies, Inc. , today announced the winners of its annual “Best Overall Value of the Year” awards for 2009 cars, trucks, crossovers and SUVs. The BOVY Awards, which evaluate every facet of what it costs to own and operate a vehicle over time, identify best-in-class vehicles that deliver outstanding value and lower than expected costs.

“The BOVY Awards are an essential guide at a time when most consumers are carefully watching their wallets,” said James Bell, editor of “A vehicle’s Cost of Ownership has gone from ‘nice to know’ to ‘need to know’ when comparing possible purchases. The BOVYs guide buyers on which car, truck or Crossover/SUV will deliver the most value for their money, especially when that vehicle ages and starts to lose that seductive new car smell.”

In a year with 13 nameplates on the list, seven brands won multiple awards: Toyota (8), Chevrolet (5), Lexus (4), Honda (3), Volkswagen (2), Ford (2), and Audi (2). For the third consecutive year, named the Toyota Prius the Best Overall Car Under $24,000, while the MINI Cooper Convertible won Best Overall Car Over $24,000. GM and Toyota split the overall truck winners, with the GMC Sierra Crew Cab Hybrid taking home Best Truck Value Over $26,000, and the Toyota Tacoma Best Overall Truck Under $26,000. The complete list of winners is below.

2009 marks the third consecutive year that Toyota and GM have vied for the highest total number of’s Best Overall Values of the Year.

"This is one of the most diverse lists of winners in our 22 year history," said Bell. "When a brand like Mitsubishi, which is traditionally known for sporty performance, is also delivering class-leading value, consumers win. Our 2009 roster also shows how truly hyper-competitive the market is, a trend that started well before the economy hit the brakes."

Bell also noted the strong presence of hybrids on the 2009 BOVY list, with hybrids winning eight out of 30 segments. “Even more hybrids and alternative-fuel vehicles are coming online in 2009, including trucks and SUVs,” said Bell. “Hybrids have consistently offered excellent value along with their inherent fuel savings, so we are not surprised to find more on our list. It is also significant to note that the first ‘Clean Tech’ diesel, the Jetta TDI SportWagen, has joined this illustrious roster. A car that delivers 41 miles per gallon and extra utility is tough to beat, even in an environment with relatively higher diesel fuel costs.”

Now in its 22nd year,’s “Best Overall Value of the Year” awards recognize vehicles whose cost of ownership is significantly lower than expected compared to competitive models in the same class. The awards provide a quick reference to finding vehicles that promise the best return on investment. A listing of this year’s winners and additional information on the awards can be found online at

2009 Overall Winners

This year, identified thirty-five winning models by segment and class, with eight overall category winners, including one tie. The overall category winners are:

  • Best Car Value Under $24,000 – Toyota Prius
  • Best Car Value Over $24,000 – MINI Cooper Convertible
  • Best Crossover/SUV Value Under $28,000 – Mercury Mariner Hybrid and Ford Escape Hybrid (tie)
  • Best Crossover/SUV Value Over $28,000 – Lexus RX
  • Best Truck Value Under $26,000 – Toyota Tacoma 2WD
  • Best Truck Value Over $26,000 – GMC Sierra Crew Cab Hybrid
  • Best Van Value Under $26,000 – Honda Odyssey
  • Best Van Value Over $26,000 – Chevrolet Express 1500

Rather than focusing solely on sticker price or the latest incentives, examines the most important factors that determine the long-term costs of a vehicle, including depreciation/retained value, maintenance and repair costs, fuel costs, insurance and state fees. Against these criteria, buyers can expect a lower cost of ownership for BOVY winners in relation to what they would expect a vehicle in its class to cost. In other words, as a vehicle’s price rises, costs would be expected to rise along with it. Not so for’s Best Overall Values of the Year.

“It is important to note that a low sticker price or even low ownership costs do not necessarily make a good value,” said Bell. “'s Best Overall Value of the Year awards recognize those vehicles whose total cost of ownership is significantly lower than expected compared to its peers. These vehicles are not just excellent values, but the top-ranked models in their respective classes.”

How Determines “Best Overall Value”

2009 marks’s twenty-third year publishing ownership cost and value analysis. For the Best Overall Value of the Year (BOVY) awards, analyzes nearly 2000 models to identify the vehicles that promise the best return on investment within their respective classes. aggregates and analyzes data from auto manufacturers, the U.S. government, and third-party data resources to determine the actual costs of ownership of new vehicles over a five-year period, and assigns a value rating to all mainstream vehicles sold in America each year. This insightful value rating factors the accumulated ownership costs of depreciation, maintenance, repairs, fuel, fees, financing, and insurance to identify the true standout models in each class.

About, Source Interlink Media, and Source Interlink Companies, Inc., part of Source Interlink Media, LLC, is the market leader in automotive ownership cost and value analysis. Founded in 1986, is committed to empowering consumers to make better purchase decisions by providing independent and essential automotive information and tools. Through the web site, consumers get the help they need to research, compare, configure and price vehicles. The site also connects buyers to the buying alternatives of their choice, including vehicle manufacturers and an online car buying guide. Source Interlink Media is a subsidiary of Source Interlink Companies, Inc. , a media and marketing services company. Source Interlink is one of the largest publishers of magazines and online content for enthusiast audiences and a leading distributor of home entertainment products, including DVDs, music CDs, magazines, games, books and related items. Learn more about and Source Interlink.




  • Base Sport - Volkswagen GTI 2-door
  • Compact over $17,000 - Honda Civic Hybrid
  • Compact under $17,000 - Honda Fit
  • Convertible - MINI Cooper Convertible
  • Large - Toyota Avalon/Hyundai Sonata 4-cylinder (tie)
  • Luxury - Lexus LS
  • Luxury Convertible - Audi A4 Convertible
  • Midsize - Toyota Prius
  • Near Luxury - Audi A3
  • Wagon - Volkswagen Jetta TDI Wagon
  • Sport - Chevrolet Corvette
  • Sport Sedan/Wagon over $38,000 - Lexus GS
  • Sport Sedan/Wagon under $38,000 - Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart
  • Subcompact - Toyota Yaris

Sport Utilities and Crossovers

  • Compact Utility/Crossover - Mercury Mariner Hybrid/Ford Escape Hybrid (tie)
  • Midsize Crossover - Toyota Highlander Hybrid
  • Luxury Crossover - Lexus RX
  • Luxury Utility - Lexus GX
  • Intermediate Utility - Toyota FJ Cruiser
  • Utility - Toyota Land Cruiser


  • Compact Pickup 2WD - Toyota Tacoma 2WD
  • Compact Pickup 4WD - Toyota Tacoma 4WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 2WD ½ Ton - GMC Sierra Crew Cab Hybrid 2WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 2WD ¾ Ton - Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD 2WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 2WD One Ton - Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD Regular Cab 2WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 4WD ½ Ton - GMC Sierra Crew Cab Hybrid 4WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 4WD ¾ Ton - Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD 4WD
  • Full-Size Pickup 4WD One Ton - Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD Crew Cab 4WD


  • Full-Size Van - Ford E150
  • Minivan - Mazda Mazda5