Monday, August 24, 2009

A Rush to Cash in on "Cash for Clunkers"

As we all know, the massively popular Cash for Clunkers program sponsored by the Federal government has swamped U.S. car dealerships. Unfortunately though, the program is expected to end at 8 PM tonight, as a busy weekend for auto dealers is expected to use up the remaining rebates. So if you are hoping to take advantage of the program then you better hurry up!

CBS News published the following article about how busy dealerships were this past weekend after Friday’s announcement that over 2/3 of the available rebates had been requested.

"I've never seen the showroom - in the 27 years I've been here - this busy," said Brian Benstock, general manager of the dealership, Paragon Honda.

The story is the same all over. At a Toyota dealer in Maryland, salesmen are hip-deep in clunker deals. And the back lot of Christian Gomes's Ford store on Long Island it’s the clunkers themselves that run 60 deep.

Gomes said he sold his entire inventory. The government's Cash for Clunkers program invigorated comatose car showrooms. The biggest winners were Toyota, raking up 19 percent of all the sales, followed by GM with 18 percent, Ford with 15 percent, and Honda with 13 percent.

Richard and Stephanie Miller didn't plan on dumping their clunker. But their 16-year-old Ford Explorer was wheezing after 153,000 miles.

"She gave us a lot of good years, but she's had it," Stephanie Miller said.

So the millers went shopping today. An hour and a half later, awarded with $3,500 in clunker cash from the government and a $1,500 rebate from ford, they were they owners of a bright red 2010 Ford Fusion.

"I voted against Obama but the man has a lot of imagination," Richard Miller said. Stephanie Miller added that she was excited about the gas mileage of the new car.

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