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Panama City Student Becomes AutoNation's First 'Take Stock In Children' Scholar In Bay County

Aug. 27, 2001

PANAMA CITY, Fla., Aug. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE: AN), Florida's largest Fortune 100 company, today joined Florida Governor Jeb Bush in celebrating the award of AutoNation's first "Take Stock in Children" scholarship to a Bay County resident, local student Mia Morgan, a seventh grader at Everitt Middle School.

Joining the Governor in marking the occasion was AutoNation President and Chief Operating Officer Michael E. Maroone, who visited here to kick off the grand re-opening of AutoNation's Cook-Whitehead Ford store. The store's $5-million expansion has added 77% more combined showroom and service space and new jobs to the 71-year-old Panama City institution.

The young student's scholarship is part of a five-year, $1-million commitment AutoNation has made to "Take Stock in Children," a statewide program that provides scholarships and mentors to low-income students. AutoNation has given $200,000 each year to the scholarship program since 1998.

"With 7,600 employees in Florida, we at AutoNation believe in investing in this state's citizens," said AutoNation President and Chief Operating Officer Michael E. Maroone. "This is why we support programs such as 'Take Stock in Children,' and why we invest in our stores, so we can continue to grow and serve the great citizens of this state."

Governor Bush announced AutoNation's scholarship award before an estimated audience of 200 invited guests at the recently expanded Cook-Whitehead showroom. In his remarks the Governor also recognized Fort-Lauderdale-based AutoNation's contributions to Florida's economy.

"I am excited about AutoNation's decision to continue to invest in Florida and in the Panhandle," Governor Bush said. "As Florida's largest Fortune 100 company, AutoNation has shown that corporations can also look beyond the bottom line and take leadership roles in education and community development programs. They are also a sign of the continued strength of Florida's economy."

The grand re-opening ceremonies at Cook-Whitehead Ford were also attended by Cook-Whitehead co-founder Charlie Whitehead, Take Stock in Children President and Founder Dr. Donald Pemberton and Ford Brand Division General Manager Steve Lyons. For today's special grand re-opening ceremonies, Cook- Whitehead Ford displayed the all-new Ford Thunderbird, which was recently redesigned for the 2002 model year.

About AutoNation, Inc.

AutoNation, Inc., a Fortune 100 company based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., owns and operates 368 new vehicle franchises at 276 dealership locations in 17 states. In 2000, the Company generated more than $20 billion in revenue. For more information, visit www.autonation.com, where shoppers can find approximately 100,000 new and used vehicles for sale.

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SOURCE AutoNation, Inc.

CONTACT: Oscar Suris, AutoNation, Inc., +1-954-769-3576, or suriso@autonation.com /

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