Cash for Clunkers: Now the United States Wants to Buy Your Car

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Congress is considering a new program called Cash for Clunkers. NPR reports what the program is all about:

The government has given billions of dollars to automakers who need to sell more cars. Now, Congress may soon offer motorists money to buy new vehicles. The idea behind the proposed program, called “Cash for Clunkers,” is to get millions of aging gas guzzlers off the road and replace them with fuel-efficient cars. If approved, the program would provide vouchers up to $4,500.

Fine and well, but what new car could you buy with $4,500? The cheapest new car I found was the $9,970 Hyundai Accent. Congress might just be thinking that people will take that cash and automatically seek out more fuel-efficient vehicles. That may be partially true, but the catch is that they either won’t be new, or buyers will have to go into debt to get them.

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I’d rather see more incentives to make cheaper hybrids, then visible job-creation or small-business stimulus incentives. People will get rid of their gas guzzlers without government help when gas prices go back up.

  • I echo your remarks. When the gov’t just give away money, people spend it unwisely. I too would like to see visible job-creation and incentives for auto manufacturers to go hybrid/electric. It can be done.

    Jared Lyda
    http://www.fireanmotionblog.com
    http://www.twitter.com/jlyda

  • This is very interesting. This is the gist of an idea that me and a group of friends worked out and sent submitted to a fund-raising contest. We were finalists, but eventually lost, with our biggest critics citing the fact that the infrastructure needed to pull it off was far too great. I wonder if this idea made its way to the government.

    Thanks for the info.

  • I think the program is alright, I mean old cars to be “traded” for newer ones is a great idea. But how responsible the people will be with the money they receive is not in our control. However, I think the government’s trying to eliminate gas guzzlers in other ways to coincide with this program.

  • Joseph H. Nichols

    Why in the name of Hell is my money going for someone else to unload their POS. I keep my vehicles mantained and in excellent condition. Once again because I am a person who ‘takes care of my bussiness’ I am targeted by the government to pay for someone else. I am pretty damn sick of this!!!