The Mercury Milan Hybrid took top honors in the Hybrid Car Vehicle Satisfaction award category. The Milan Hybrid was top rated in such critical areas as fuel economy and environmental friendliness. Its satisfaction was also top in class with respect to innovative technology and vehicle range.
Both standard Sync and the EcoGuide instrument cluster, which provides encouragement for a fuel-efficient driving style and allows customers to adjust the level of feedback they get on their driving habits, likely contributed to the high technology ranking. Whether the challenge of efficient driving or the good dynamics Ford dialled in to the Milan are the reason, the Mercury took best-in-class score for the elusive fun-to-drive category, too.
For a complete list of winners and description of the Awards, click here.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has announced the winners of its 2009 Top Safety Picks. There are 72 winners in 2009; more than double in 2008 and more than 3 times as many as in 2007. Some key factors leading to winning results are better structure to protect from side impacts and increased application of electronic stability control which helps maintain control and minimize rollovers. Additionally, improved headrests are doing a better job protecting against whiplash.
IIHS works for auto insurers and publishes the results of its Top Safety Picks to help consumers select the safest cars and light trucks when they are in the market. AutoPacific’s research shows that safety features and feeling safe while driving are very important when a person selects their vehicle.
Ford Wins 16 Top Safety Picks – almost 25% of Those Awarded
A major result of the 2009 Top Picks was that Ford Motor Company (including Volvo) had 16 of the 72 Top Picks. Several years ago, after Ford acquired Volvo, Ford began adopting Volvo safety strategies in its designs. Several Ford vehicles are derived from the Volvo S80 platform – Lincoln MKS, Ford Taurus, Ford Taurus X, Mercury Sable, Ford Flex, Volvo S80. Using Volvo’s vaunted SIPS (Side Impact Protection System), Ford has been able to make its larger vehicles able to withstand significant blows from the side.
The Ford Fusion with ESC and Mercury Milan with ESC, Lincoln MKZ, Volvo C70, Ford Edge, Lincoln MKX, Volvo XC90, Ford Escape, Mercury Mariner, Ford F-150 also won IIHS Top Safety Picks for 2009.
Honda Comes In Second – Close Behind Ford
Coming in close behind Ford Motor Company products was another company that set an objective to become a safety leader several years ago. American Honda has Top Safety Picks for Acura RL, Acura TL, Acura TSX, Acura MDX, Acura RDX, Honda Accord 4-doors, Honda Civic 4-doors with ESC, Honda Fit, Honda Odyssey, Honda Pilot, Honda CRV, Honda Element and Honda Ridgeline. The Honda Fit is the first Economy (Mini) Car to achieve an IIHS Top Safety Pick.
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The IIHS Press Release Is shown below the fold.
Ah yes, the Mercury Milan, the upscale sister ship to the Ford Fusion. Aimed at younger buyers who want something a little more sophisticated than the Dodge Avenger or Mitsubishi Galant. Mercury aims the Milan at the Nissan Altima, Honda Accord and Toyota Camry buyer. We definitely wanted to take a closer look.
To be honest it’s very rare for a 4-door mid-size car from Mercury to really knock my socks off. In terms of sex appeal I typically think Mercury ranks right up there with… well, Buick (that’s right, there isn’t any sex appeal – alright the new Buick Enclave has a little). With that said, I must admit the Milan is a great mid-size car. It really does have a few things going for it – style, comfort, and value. It was one of those cars I didn’t want to like but ended up enjoying. Just promise me you won’t quote me.
The Milan we received as an evaluation vehicle did have all the bells and whistles. It was the V6 Premier AWD, very nicely equipped at $28,915 (which according to our data is about the median price of a new vehicle in 2008). Our particular Milan was equipped with the 3.0L V6, 6-speed automatic, and all-wheel-drive. The window sticker boasted EPA fuel economy at 17 city and 25 hwy, with our particular vehicle averaging 19.9mpg (both city and highway), which we thought was decent but not spectacular for a vehicle with a V6 and AWD. Maybe a front-wheel-drive version wouldn’t zap our fuel economy.
And turn that radio down!
Today’s teens have grown up in a world of fluid and ever-expanding technology, with their parents using everything from V-chips to internet blockers to teddy-bear babysitting cams to GPS trackers to keep better track of them. For many, it is simply part of their world. Parents and kids have the same trust issues to sort through, just the same as when I was a kid and didn’t think my mom had any right to go through MY dresser, but parents have more direct tools at their disposal now.
Add one more to the arsenal. Ford is introducing the latest electronic nanny next year (2010MY) across several model lines, including the Focus. The system will be a no-cost option or standard equipment, depending on model. It turns out to be an inexpensive way to help teens stay focused in early driving years, when they are the least experienced, and for parents to feel better about teens driving.
The Large Car category featured competition between the Sable, Taurus and Avalon. In the end, owners’ scores ranked the Sable as the ideal Large Car. It was the Sable’s scores for visibility, interior storage and handling that really helped outpace the competition.
A perennial favorite for Mercury, the large, spacious and comfortable Grand Marquis won the 2008 Ideal Vehicle Award in the Large Luxury Car segment. With large cargo space, appropriate exterior styling, V8 power and acceleration and easy ingress/egress it’s no wonder owners rated the Grand Marquis an Ideal Vehicle.
Tustin, California, June 30, 2008 –
An “ideal” is defined as an excellent or perfect example. In the annual Ideal Vehicle Awards (IVA), announced today by automotive research and consulting firm AutoPacific, owners rate their new 2008 model year cars and trucks by how close they come to their ideal, as measured by 15 key vehicle attributes. The cars or trucks that owners would change the least are the most ideal.
Jetta is top-ranked in the Mid-Size Car Segment, winning its 2008 Vehicle Satisfaction Award based on some traditional Volkswagen strengths, such as Fun to Drive, Braking and Handling. Owner ratings in these important dynamic areas were complemented by strong ratings in Feeling Safe While Driving, Safety Features and Overall Quality.
Milan ranks at the top of the Mid-Size Car category, winning the 2008 Vehicle Satisfaction Award with strong ratings for Styling and Feeling Safe While Driving. In the two years Milan has been on the market, it has established a Reputation valued by its owners. Milan owners rate their Experience with their Lincoln-Mercury Dealer highly and find the Milan a good Value for the Money.
Cadillac Top Brand, Mercedes-Benz S-Class Top Car, Toyota Sequoia Top Truck and Top Vehicle
Tustin, California, May 29, 2008 – A study released today by noted automotive consulting firm AutoPacific, Inc
. summarizes the results of its 2008 model year vehicle satisfaction research. AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award (VSA) is an industry benchmark for objectively measuring how satisfied an owner is with their new passenger car or light truck.
In a year that promises to be the toughest in a decade, owner-based awards like AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award will help customers make their purchase decisions.
The brand with the highest satisfaction rating is Cadillac. The vehicle – car or truck – registering highest overall satisfaction in 2008 is the new-for-2008 Toyota Sequoia Large Sport Utility Vehicle. The passenger car with the highest overall satisfaction score is the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
There are twenty-eight Vehicle Satisfaction Award categories. At the manufacturer level, multiple top ranked award winners include: General Motors
(eleven categories), Toyota (nine categories), Ford (six categories), Volkswagen
(four categories), Honda
(three categories) and Hyundai
“Cadillac wins the Vehicle Satisfaction Award as the top brand in a close race. Strong satisfaction performance by Cadillac cars and trucks has Cadillac winning over other leading luxury marques including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW says AutoPacific president George Peterson. “Top ranked finishes by Cadillac’s Escalade, CTS and DTS helped cement their industry topping position.”
Peterson continues, “Vehicles that are all new received top rankings in several categories: Cadillac CTS, Honda Accord, Mitsubishi Lancer, Scion xD, Toyota Sequoia, Audi Q7, Buick Enclave, Hyundai Veracruz, GMC Acadia, Saturn Vue and Nissan Rogue. These new-for-2008 vehicles were strongly rated by their owners showing that the industry continues to improve as new vehicles are added to the hotly contested American car and light truck markets.”
From a vehicle type perspective, Traditional Sport Utility Vehicles received the highest ratings as a class closely followed by Crossover Sport Utility Vehicles. Peterson says, “Clearly, SUVs continue to be one of the most popular and satisfying vehicle types available in the USA today. Even with skyrocketing gas prices, SUVs are attractive and Crossover SUVs fill the bill for most SUV buyers with better fuel economy.” Cars scored slightly below industry average followed by minivans and pickup trucks.