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AOL, Autoweb.com Forge Content, Marketing Alliance

In its second big agreement to beef up its new Auto Channel, America Online on Wednesday struck a four-year deal with Autoweb.com Inc., that places Autoweb content and technology throughout AOL brands.

The deal comes on the heels of AOL's agreement with AutoNation to create a co-branded site through which AutoNation will be the exclusive retailer of new and used vehicles to AOL members.

The agreement calls for Autoweb's content and configuration and comparison services to be integrated into automotive areas across AOL, AOL.com, CompuServe, Netscape Netcenter and AOL Digital City under "Powered by Autoweb" branding.

The services allow users to configure a car by manufacturer, make, model, trim specifications and other option packages, and perform side-by-side comparisons of competitive vehicles.

The two companies will also build a co-branded site, which will be accessible through the Auto Channel.

"This alliance with America Online demonstrates that Autoweb is not only a leading consumer brand offering the most popular online car-buying choices, but also the owner of core assets that are making Autoweb the industry standard in automotive data, content and technology," said Dean DeBiase, chairman and chief executive officer of Autoweb.

"By leveraging the value of our premier automotive content and tools we can seamlessly offer millions of America Online users the best methods to research and compare cars online, combined with our most popular car buying services."

Financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed.