MSN Autos Canada Gauges the Pulse of Car Lovers Gearing Up For the 2003 Canadian International Auto Show

TORONTO, Feb. 10, 2003 — MSN®
Autos Canada, the official consumer Web site of the 2003 Canadian International Auto Show, today released the results of a survey of 1,000 J.D. Power Web Perspectives Auto Panel members, consisting of users of MSN Autos and MSN.CA. The survey found that while panel members share a passion for cars, their responses to questions about them are as diverse as the cars they drive.

“MSN Autos is the premier online destination for automotive research and buying, and these Auto Panel members include some of the most passionate car people in Canada,”
said Ruth D’Souza, general manager of MSN Autos Canada.
“Their response to our online survey was incredibly enthusiastic, and the panelists’ responses were all over the map.”

Everyone Loves an Auto Show

As would be expected, auto shows are a popular event for Auto Panel members. The survey found that more than 60 percent of respondents plan to attend an auto show this year, and nearly 75 percent have attended an auto show in the past.

Why do more than 279,000 people attend the Canadian International Auto Show every year, while tens of thousands more visit similar shows in cities across Canada? Many survey respondents said they like the opportunity auto shows provide to research and compare new vehicles, while others prefer to view concept car displays and attend new-car unveilings. Nearly 30 percent of those surveyed admitted they enjoy the free merchandise the most, while others said they are complete car nuts and love absolutely everything about the show. A few claimed they attend because their spouse drags them kicking and screaming to the show.

Internet Most Popular Source for Car Shopping

The survey identified a number of sources of information that members use when shopping for a new or used vehicle. The most popular source is the Internet: Nearly 80 percent of respondents said they have used the Internet to research new cars for purchase. Other sources included word of mouth, magazines, vehicle brochures, auto shows, books, consumer reports, newspapers and personal experience.

“More car buyers are using the Internet to find the information they need when purchasing a new or used car,”
D’Souza said.
“MSN Autos Canada offers a site that is rich in content, vibrant in appearance, and highly interactive to help consumers make better and more informed vehicle purchase decisions.”

Panelists Sweet on Their Cars

With Valentine’s Day approaching, panelists were asked what they would buy if they were to give their car a Valentine’s Day gift. Answers included a remote starter kit (24.3 percent), a new sound system (18.5 percent), complete detailing (17.9 percent), a paint job (14.8 percent), new parts (9.0 percent) and tinting (5.1 percent). Some of the more popular responses in the
category included new rims and tires, more horsepower or torque, engine work, body work, and a DVD player.

Classic Cars Lovers Consider the Best of the Past

Classic car lovers are abundant in this group. When asked which classic car they would bring back from the past, panelists identified more than 250 classics, ranging from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the classic Bumblebee to muscle cars such as the Ford Mustang (including just about every model year from the 1960s). Some of the most popular cars cited were the Ford Shelby Cobra, Pontiac GTO, Studebaker, Chevy El Camino, Ford Galaxie, De Soto, Jaguar XKE, AMC Gremlin and the Barracuda.

Top 10 Coolest Movie and Television Cars of All Time

For those who like lists, the survey identified the top 10 coolest movie and television cars of all time, as follows:

10. Herbie the Love Bug

9. Austin Powers’

8. James Bond’s Lotus Esprit from
“The Spy Who Loved Me”

7. Steve McQueen’s Mustang from

6. The DeLorean Time Machine from
“Back to the Future”

5. General Lee from
“The Dukes of Hazzard”

4. “Magnum P.I.’s”
Ferrari 308

3. James Bond’s BMW Z3 Roadster from

2. James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 from

1. KITT from
“Knight Rider”

About the J.D. Power Web Perspectives Auto Panel and Survey

The J.D. Power Web Perspectives Auto Panel consists of 1,000 Canadians recruited over the past year from the ranks of registered users of MSN Autos Canada and MSN.CA. Panelists occasionally participate in online research studies about automotive and other topics. This survey was conducted online with 1,000 J.D. Power Web Perspectives Auto Panel members in mid-January 2003. The panel has been found to be highly representative of Canadian vehicle owners who have access to the Internet.

About MSN Autos Canada

Launched in September 2000, Toronto-based MSN Autos Canada is the most visited online automotive site in Canada, with more than 800,000 monthly visitors. The fully bilingual MSN Autos Canada site is an independent, all-makes all-models resource that provides consumers with the broadest range of services to find a car they love at a price they can afford. With information from product reviews and surround videos to new- and used-car-buying services, visitors can research, compare cars, select or configure the car they want to purchase, and receive detailed information from the MSN Autos Canada network of Canadian dealers across the nation.

About MSN.CA

MSN.CA is a leading Canadian Web portal with 9.6 million* unique monthly visitors. Its suite of online services delivers news, information, entertainment and a variety of communication tools including the MSN network of Internet services, the Hotmail®
Web-based e-mail service and MSN Search. MSN.CA also provides such high-quality interactive services as MSN Messenger, MSN Extra Storage, MSN Shopping and MSN Web Communities. More information is available at .

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

* comScore Media Metrix Canada, Home/Work combined, November 2002. Unique Visitors: The estimated number of different individuals within a designated demographic that access the content of a specific site from among the total number of projected individuals (only counted once, even if they visit the same site more than once).

Microsoft, MSN, the MSN logo and Hotmail are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

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