For Immediate Release
LAS VEGAS, November 4, 2004 To honor automotive excellence and celebrate car culture, Sony Computer Entertainment America, publisher of the best-selling Gran TurismoTM racing franchise for PlayStation®/PlayStation 2, hosted the second annual Gran Turismo 4 (GT4) Awards yesterday at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) auto show in Las Vegas. In its inaugural year, the GT4 Awards marked a historic collaboration of videogame and auto enthusiasts, while featuring a distinguished line-up of entries from top SEMA show exhibitors, all vying for the coveted honor of being dubbed "Best in Show," a title that included the historic privilege of having their vehicle inserted into the revolutionary Gran Turismo franchise, exclusively for PlayStation 2.
Held at Las Vegas hot-spot ICE, the GT4 Awards highlighted six categories that included "Best Truck/SUV," "Best Japanese Import," "Best European Import," "Best Domestic Automobile," "Best Hot Rod" and the coveted "Best in Show." The Best in Show vehicle will be immortalized by being inserted into the next installment of the Gran Turismo franchise videogame , available for all consumers to view and drive , making it the talk of the auto industry.
"We're very excited to have hosted the second annual Gran Turismo 4 Awards at SEMA. Through our awards program, we honored automotive enthusiast's passion for car culture that is synonomous to the mission of the Gran Turismo franchise," said Kazunori Yamauchi, famed creator of the Gran Turismo series. "With the ongoing support of the automotive and PlayStation 2 community, the Gran Turismo franchise continues to serve as a unique medium to experience car culture like never before for now and the years to come."
"SEMA and Gran Turismo 4 both showcase the high level of enthusiasm and passion for cars that goes well with the automotive culture," said John Kiewicz, Editor, Motor Trend Magazine. "The Gran Turismo 4 Awards further communicate the meaning behind the franchise, while honoring SEMA exhibitors in their quest to be the best at what they do. From selecting unique automobiles from five different categories, I had the opportunity to serve as a judge and was honored in selecting the Best European entry, which later won the "Best in Show" award, enabling it to be featured in an upcoming Gran Turismo game for the world to see."
Entries for the GT4 Awards included vehicles encompassing manufacturers around the globe. GT4 Awards category winners were selected by representatives from popular automotive media and related company outlets including Road & Track , Motor Trend , Truck Trend, Red Line Oil , Racer Magazine and Super Street , with the "Best in Show" award being selected by Kazunori Yamauchi. Last year's "Best in Show" winner included a 1962 Buick Special, owned by Ted and Sue Richardson of Oregon, which will be available in the upcoming release of Gran Turismo 4 .
The overall winner was Marcel Horn who was honored with the "Best in Show" award for their one-of-kind HPA Volkswagen R32. In addition to the hardware, Horn will set a new standard for visibility among auto enthusiasts as his vehicle will be drivable in the next installment of Gran Turismo when it becomes available. Horn was also awarded the "Best European Import" award.
The "Best Truck/SUV" honor was presented to Brett Garner for his Ford F-250.
Walking away with the award for "Best Japanese Import" was Mark Mendoza for his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII.
The "Best Domestic Automobile" award was given to Jeff Tetzlaff for his 1966 GT40. The final category, which was for "Best Hot Rod," was awarded to the Craig Morrison for his 1955 Chevrolet 210 Sedan.
With more than 36 million units sold worldwide, the Gran Turismo franchise is regarded as the best and most authentic driving simulation ever created, available exclusively for PlayStation and PlayStation 2. For the launch of Gran Turismo 4 , a new standard will be set for authentic racing action with upwards of 650 cars and more than 50 tracks encompassing eighty real auto manufacturers and various real-life courses from around the world, as well as realistic driving physics and various new game modes.
About Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.
Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. continues to redefine the entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® and PS oneTM game console, and the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system. The PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system is set to revolutionize the home entertainment market, offering the most compelling interactive content and the capability to be used as a network terminal in the coming broadband era.
Recognized as the undisputed industry leader, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. markets the PlayStation family of products and develops, publishes, markets and distributes software for the PS one game console and the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system for the North American market. Based in Foster City, Calif. Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. serves as headquarters for all North American operations and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.