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Honda Fields Three Near-Zero Emissions Vehicles at Challenge Bibendum

TORRANCE, Calif, U.S.A., September 22, 2003 – Honda will field three Partial Zero Emission vehicles (PZEV) at the 2003 Challenge Bibendum, including the first hybrid vehicle to earn certification as an Advanced Technology-PZEV (AT-PZEV) vehicle and the first-ever passenger car to achieve this level of emissions certification.

The 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid, which is participating as part of Team Honda at this week's environmental challenge event at Northern California's Infineon Raceway, is distinguished as the first-ever hybrid to earn certification as an AT-PZEV from the California Air Resources Board (CARB). The 2003 Civic Hybrid, currently sold in California, is the only hybrid vehicle to achieve this stringent emissions level, producing about 90-percent fewer smog-forming engine emissions than required of a typical new vehicle.

The compressed natural gas-powered Civic GX joins the Civic Hybrid as the first ever vehicle to earn PZEV certification and the "cleanest internal combustion engine" ever tested by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In addition to the air quality benefits provided, the Civic Hybrid and Civic GX contribute to energy security and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by delivering high efficiency and reduced CO2 output. The Civic GX also uses natural gas that is more than 90 percent domestically sourced.

Rounding out the ultra-clean threesome is the 2003 Honda Accord PZEV, one of America's most popular passenger cars and a leader in the adoption of clean air technologies.

"Honda believes that vehicles like the Civic Hybrid, Civic GX and Accord PZEV will play a critical part in helping meet near-term air quality and energy security goals," said Gunnar Lindstrom, senior manager of Alternative Fuel Vehicles at American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "We have demonstrated through the application of these technologies to popular vehicles that near-zero emission gasoline vehicles, hybrids, and natural gas vehicles are each an effective path to improving air quality."

To achieve the AT-PZEV emissions classification, a vehicle must be a Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV) with zero evaporative emissions and carry a 15-year/150,000-mile warranty on emissions equipment.

In keeping with the company's commitment to environmental technology leadership, Honda has consistently led the industry in meeting new emissions requirements and bringing advanced engine and emissions technologies to the showroom.