Monday, August 24, 2009

Japan Weeps as Cash for Clunkers Ends

Tonight, cash for clunkers will end. No longer will Americans be able to trade in perfectly functioning cars for the ever-so-fuel efficient Hummer H3T.

But the program, now expanded to $3 billion and offering rebates of up to $4,500, isn't limited to the best gas savers on the market. And that's good news to Beny Ledesma, general sales manager at Williamson Cadillac-Hummer in Miami.

The dealership has sold three 2009 Cadillac SRXs - the six-cylinder engine model - through the clunkers program, he said, and is finishing paperwork on two more. Ledesma hopes to sell the other 14 at the dealership, along with some of the Hummer H3Ts on the lot that are eligible for clunker rebates.

Both vehicles get about 18 mpg, considerably less than the 25.3 mpg average that LaHood has attributed to new cars purchased under the clunker program.

"The Cash for Clunkers is definitely generating traffic for Cadillac and Hummer," Ledesma said

No longer will Americans receive government dollars for primarily purchasing vehicles from Japanese auto-makers.

Smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles like the Toyota Corolla are top sellers, while buyers are trading in SUV's like the Ford Explorer to be scrapped, turning the already dwindling number of American car owners into the growing ranks of foreign car drivers.

Toyota vehicles accounted for 19.2 percent of the 489,269 sales, while General Motors had the second spot at 17.7 percent.

Another "successful" government program has thankfully come to an end.

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