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2006 "North American Car and Truck of the Year"
First for a single brand: Honda wins cars & trucks titles

Honda double win at the 2006 North American Car and Truck of the Year awards.

Detroit - January 8, 2006 - Dick Colliver, executive vice president, American Honda Motor Co., (left) and John Mendel, senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., accept the "North American Car of the Year" award for the 2006 Honda Civic at the 2006 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

10th January 2006.

It is not an easy task, grabbing both the car and truck of the year awards, but Honda did it at this year's North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, Michigan (public days from 14 to 22 January).

For 2006, both Honda's Civic and Ridgeline have earned the prestigious “North American Car of the Year” and “North American Truck of the Year” awards respectively.

This marks the first time ever that a single brand has won both awards in the same year, and it marks Honda’s first win in either category.

The North American Car of the Year and Truck of the Year Awards are given by a group of 49 international automotive journalists.

Unlike awards given by a single publication, radio or television station, the  North American Car of the Year and Truck of the Year Awards - like the Japan Car of the Year and the European Car of the Year awards too - are given by a panel of automotive journalists, from the United States and Canada in this instance (Japan and Europe in the two other mentioned awards).

Presented each year at the opening of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the 49 international automotive journalists elect what they believe are the most outstanding car and truck of the year based on factors including innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.

“We set out to have the Civic and Ridgeline become benchmarks in their respective segments, and having them chosen as North American Car and Truck of the Year certainly validates that effort," said John Mendel, senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "We couldn't be more pleased with the reaction to both vehicles. This will be great news to the Honda associates (employees) in North America who build them.”

Civic - The 2006 Honda Civic i-VTEC™ engine technologies deliver more power while still achieving an EPA-estimated highway fuel economy rating of 40 miles per gallon, features advanced standard safety equipment including side curtain airbags and front side airbags.

The 2006 Civic features an expressive exterior styling, a high-tech and spacious interior, and fun-to-drive performance. It offers as many as seven ways to enjoy audio entertainment - including XM ® Satellite Radio, MP3 and WMA support and an accessory Apple   iPod adapter that connects the popular music player to the Civic's audio controls.

The Civic Hybrid provides a 1.3-liter i-VTEC engine with a new generation of Honda's Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) technology that helps the hybrid achieve an EPA-estimated city/highway fuel economy of 49/51 miles per gallon and an Advanced-Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (AT-PZEV) rating.

Additionally, the Civic Hybrid can deactivate all four of its cylinders and operate using only the electric motor in certain low-speed cruising situations.

The Civic Si flexes its high-performance muscle with a 197-horsepower, DOHC 2.0-liter i-VTEC engine connected to a 6-speed manual transmission and a limited slip differential.

Ridgeline - Since its introduction in March of 2005, the Ridgeline has re-defined the truck segment through its innovative and exclusive new features. Designed to meet the needs of a growing population of consumers purchasing trucks to support their active, outdoor-oriented lifestyles, the Ridgeline delivers a proportional mix of overall truck capability, towing performance, ruggedness and value in a fun-to-drive and responsible vehicle.

Standard features on all Ridgeline models include a 247-horsepower VTEC V-6 engine; 5-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission; advanced Variable Torque Management four-wheel drive system; air conditioning; tilt steering wheel; power - side windows, power sliding rear window and door locks; cruise control; keyless entry;  automatic heated wiper zone; 6-speaker 100-watt audio system with CD player; 60/40 split lift-up rear seat with under-seat storage; all-weather floor mats; 5-foot cargo bed with six heavy duty tie down cleats and 4 bed lights; an 8.5 cubic foot secure, lockable In-Bed Trunk; and dual-action tailgate.

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