IRVINE, CA – Honda has won Kelley Blue Book's 2009 Best Resale Value Brand with an average residual value of 44.5 percent after five years of ownership. This puts the automaker back on top after it finished fourth in last year’s KBB rankings.

Officials attributed Honda’s high resale value largely to its brand strength, reputation and lineup of small, fuel-efficient models.

“Honda has delivered rock-solid products year after year, and for today’s market the brand has the right types of vehicles in showrooms in an environment in which sticker price, fuel economy, value and content are critical to meeting new-car buyers’ everyday needs,” explained Jack Nerad, executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book. Nerad also noted that Honda is not involved in the full-size SUVs and pickup truck segments, both of which suffered this year, contributed to its winning.

At No. 2 is Toyota, one of four brands to increase its score from a year ago. The automaker improved by 1.3 percent, allowing it to climb from 10th to second on the list.

Suzuki, Mini, and Scion were the other three to show an upswing in projected value.

While Mini and Scion have five-year residual percentages of more than 50 percent, they were ineligible for the list because they don’t have the required four vehicles in their lineup, officials explained.

Kelley Blue Book also awarded Best Resale Value honors across 15 segments and for individual models, as well.

For full details of KBB’s award rankings, click here.