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John Stewart

Kelley Blue Book Reports Rise in New-Car Traffic, Leads

IRVINE, Calif., Jan. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Kelley Blue Book, www.kbb.com, the leading provider of new- and used-vehicle information, today reports an increase in new-car shopper activity on its top-rated Web site. After a period of consumer cautiousness, which led to lower shopping activity and lower sales in recent months, the average daily new-car traffic on www.kbb.com has increased 20 percent in January 2009 compared to the previous month. This reveals higher traffic levels than any time during the fourth quarter of 2008.

Support for the domestic manufacturers is up during this time as well, with traffic to General Motors reports up 19 percent from December 2008. Ford has 9 percent, and Chrysler has 20 percent more activity on kbb.com compared to the previous month.

"Based on the climb in new-car traffic and dealer leads generated on kbb.com in December and early January, we expect to see a lift in auto sales versus the last quarter of 2008," said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book and kbb.com. "Consumers are recognizing great deals are available now, many based on generous manufacturer incentives, making this a great time to buy or lease a new vehicle."

As a further indication that the recent sales freeze may be thawing, dealer leads generated on kbb.com were up 19 percent in the week ending December 28, 2008, compared to the previous week. In the following week ending January 4, 2009, the number of leads jumped an additional 18 percent, creating an overall leads increase of 40 percent compared to two weeks prior.

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John Stewart

Chrysler adjusts production

Chrysler Adjusts Production as a Result of the Deteriorating U.S. Credit Crunch

Auburn Hills, Mich., (Dec 17, 2008)  - Due to the continued lack of consumer credit for the American car buyer and the resulting dramatic impact it has had on overall industry sales in the United States, Chrysler LLC announced that it will make significant adjustments to the production schedules of its manufacturing operations. In doing so, the Company will keep production and dealer inventory aligned with U.S. market demand. In response, the Company confirmed that all Chrysler manufacturing operations will be idled at the end of the shift Friday, Dec. 19, and impacted employees will not return to work any sooner than Monday, Jan. 19, 2009.

Chrysler dealers confirmed to the Company at a recent meeting at its headquarters, that they have many willing buyers for Chrysler, Jeep® and Dodge vehicles but are unable to close the deals, due to lack of financing. The dealers have stated that they have lost an estimated 20 to 25 percent of their volume because of this credit situation.

The Company will continue to monitor the production schedules of its manufacturing operations moving forward.

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John Stewart

New F-150 Suspension from ProComp

6-inch suspension systems for 2009 Ford F-150 2/4WD

The best just got better! The mighty F-150 is all new for 2009 and loaded with the latest features and technology. Once again, Pro Comp is proud to be the first manufacturer to have 6-inch performance suspension systems available for both 2 and 4 wheel drive versions of these new trucks.

The engineering team at Pro Comp used state-of-the-art CAD technology to develop new suspension systems for the 2009 F-150. These sophisticated new systems deliver maximum performance and control without compromising the AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control® (RSC®) systems now standard on all F-150s.

Key components in the new 6-inch systems are super strong extended steering knuckles and stylish new one-piece cross members that install easily and maintain proper CV axle angles. Systems for 4WD also feature a integrated front differential skid plate for added protection. New for 2009, cast rear block with integrated bumpstop pads and height adjustable rear kit allows for added personalization of vehicle stance.

Stage II systems include MX2.75C Motorsport Series coil over front shocks and MX6 monotube 6 position adjustable rear shocks for optimum on and off road performance and handling. Stage I systems feature front strut spacers and ES9000 rear shocks.

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John Stewart

New Ram 1500 Lift from ProComp

6-Inch Suspension Systems for 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 4WD With Multi-link Rear Coil Suspension

The right lift at the right price, right now! The highly anticipated 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 4WD DS trucks have landed at dealerships across the country sporting a new multilink rear coil spring suspension. Pro Comp is proud to be the first manufacturer to have 6-inch performance suspension systems available for these hot new trucks.

Pro Comp’s engineering team designed 2 new systems that maximize the handling and performance benefits of the new multi-link system without compromising the factory Electronic Stability Program (ESP). The results are nothing short of amazing as these are the smoothest riding lift systems ever engineered for the Dodge 1500 truck.

The 6” systems feature high strength extended steering knuckles and one-piece cross members that install easily and maintain proper CV axle angles. New precision engineered height adjustable spacer and rear control arm bracket system assures an OE quality ride and allows for added personalization of vehicle stance.

Stage II systems feature MX2.75C Motorsport Series coil over front shocks and MX6 mono-tube 6 position adjustable rear shocks for optimum on and off road performance and handling. Stage I systems feature front strut spacers and ES9000 rear shock absorbers. Lift allows the use of up to 37” x 12.50” tires on 18”x9” or 20”x9” wheel with 5” backspacing.

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John Stewart

Kelley Blue Book Now Releasing Values Weekly

Wholesale Value Renamed Wholesale Lending Value, Auction Value Introduced, Books Move to Monthly

IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 8 -- Kelley Blue Book, www.kbb.com, the leading provider of new- and used-vehicle information, is now publishing its used-vehicle values weekly via its Web-based product KarPower Online®. Prior to this week, only the Kelley Blue Book® Trade-In Values were updated weekly, while other values were published in the Kelley Blue Book Official Guide every other month. The Blue Book Official Guide also has an updated publishing schedule with its frequency moving from every other month to monthly. Blue Book Official Guide customers received their first monthly edition in November of 2008.

In addition to striving for greater accuracy through more frequent updates, Kelley Blue Book has added an 'Auction Value,' which is what a used vehicle is expected to sell for at a wholesale auction. An additional change includes a name change for the company's Wholesale Value, a long-standing benchmark for automotive lending, which is now the 'Wholesale Lending Value.' The Wholesale Lending Value will be updated weekly reflecting the value of a vehicle that has been fully reconditioned, inspected and is frontline ready. Finance companies can now use Kelley Blue Book's Wholesale Lending Value without any additional calculation to mitigate risk and better manage lending portfolios.

"Kelley Blue Book had been planning to move to weekly values for some time, but with the changing economy and the volatility in the automotive marketplace, we sped up the process to offer greater accuracy now," said Paul Johnson, president and CEO of Kelley Blue Book. "Having access to the most timely and relevant values in the industry will allow automotive businesses to have insight into the market each week to make the most informed buying, selling and finance decisions."

Dealers, manufacturers, finance companies and others in the automotive industry can access all of Kelley Blue Book's weekly values through a paid subscription to the company's Internet-based valuation system, KARPOWER Online (www.karpower.com), through syndication or via our service provider RouteOne® and others.

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