For the third consecutive year, the BMW brand has ranked higher than any other in Strategic Vision's 2001 Total Quality Index, a measure of new vehicle owner satisfaction. In the Near-Luxury Car category, the BMW 3 Series received the highest point total for the third consecutive year, earning points for roadability, handling, power and innovation. Owners of the BMW 3 Series noted a strong sense of security, control and esteem. They also gave it high marks for harmony and refinement. Every year since 1995, the Total Quality Index has analyzed such categories as performance, craftsmanship, reliability, innovation and the relationship between vehicle and owner. Specifically, it captures and documents the emotional aspects of the driving experience. Strategic Vision, a San Diego-based research firm, calculated the results. "These high rankings illustrate our commitment to provide our customers with a product that results in exceptional satisfaction," said Tom Purves, chairman and CEO of BMW (US) Holding Corp. "A repeat award for both the BMW 3 Series and for our brand is especially welcome because it shows we are able to give our customers an innovative, high performance road experience while creating an emotional experience that is important to our owners." About BMW Group in America BMW of North America has been present in the United States since 1975. Since then, the BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales and financial service organizations for the BMW and MINI brands; a South Carolina manufacturing operation; DESIGNWORKS/USA, an industrial design firm in California; a technology office in Silicon Valley and various other operations throughout the country. The BMW Group is represented in the U.S. through a network of more than 340 car, 315 sports activity vehicle and 160 motorcycle retailers. BMW US Holding Corp., the group's headquarters for North, Central and South America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, N.J. Information about BMW products is available to consumers at