On the heels of last year's launch of the Verona midsize sedan and Forenza premium compact sedan and this year's debut of the 2005 Reno five-door crossover vehicle at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, American Suzuki Motor Corp. (ASMC) starts the new year on a high note by accepting a variety of awards including the Automotive Market Environmental Superiority (AMES) Award, the Annual Light Truck and SUV (ALTAS) Award for the 2004 Suzuki XL-7, and the esteemed Institute of Store Planners and Visual Merchandising And Store Design's (ISP+VSMD) Interior Design Award for the Suzuki Square retail image program. By achieving excellence in these varied areas - from environmental performance to superior product value to welcoming dealership design - Suzuki hopes to move further into the automotive mainstream and onto buyers' shopping lists.

For the fifth consecutive year Suzuki has been honored with an AMES Award. This year, the 2004 Suzuki XL-7 earned the Award for having a superior environmental performance index than competitive models in AMES' midsize SUV class. The AMES Award quantitative evaluation criteria is based on the life cycle impact of a vehicle on the environment. The most significant elements are regulated emissions and non-regulated emissions related to a vehicle's fuel economy. Using the same certified data supplied by automakers to the Environmental Protection Agency to establish regulatory compliance, AMES calculates individual environmental performance index for over 250 models available for sale in the US. For more information on the AMES Award, go to www.amesaward.com.

The 2004 Suzuki XL-7 also received top honors for the third consecutive year from Sport Truck Connection Television's ALTAS Award in the compact SUV category. The award honors the staff's favorite vehicle of the ones they evaluated in the past year. The ALTAS Award is based on how a vehicle performs in its intended function - the way that most owners would use their vehicle - rather than criteria based on "race track" performance. The XL-7 was one of seven automobile models honored by Sport Truck Connection in 2003, and the only model awarded in the compact SUV category. For more information on the ALTAS Awards, check out www.stconnection.com.

American Suzuki's award-winning 2004 product lineup includes the new elegant Verona midsize sedan and stylish Forenza premium compact sedan, Suzuki's flagship XL-7 SUV, the ruggedly sporty Vitara V6 and Grand Vitara SUVs, and the sporty Aerio SX and Aerio sedan.