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Customers Inquire About Clunkers

July 15, 2009, 4:57 PM by Perry Groten

Customers Inquire About Clunkers
The financial wheels are in motion to get thousands of gas-guzzling vehicles to exit the nation's roads and enter the scrap heap. Some of the rules are still being worked out on the government's so-called "Cash for Clunkers" program, but some KELOLAND customers are already asking about what kind of deals they can get on their old cars.

"Cash for Clunkers" provides about $1 billion in incentives for people to buy more fuel-efficient cars. Someone with a car or truck that gets 18 miles-a-gallon or less can trade it in and get $3,500 off on a new vehicle that gets at least 22 miles-a-gallon. The dealer will knock-off $4,500 if the new vehicle gets ten miles-a-gallon more than the old one. The offer has plenty of customers in KELOLAND thinking of trading up.

It's crunch time for gas-guzzlers. "Cash for Clunkers" is putting the squeeze on old cars.

"The scrap metal yards are going to be very busy, I can tell you that," David Billion said.

There's no shortage in South Dakota of gas-hogs eligible for a trade-in through "Cash for Clunkers."

"I always think of job security when I drive down 41st Street, I see plenty of old cars on the road," Billion said.

James Drenth is kicking a few tires with the idea of giving the boot to both of his gas-guzzlers.

"I've got two vehicles, one of them's just a really old junker I drive back and forth to work and the other one I call my luxury car, but it's not really a luxury car anymore," Drenth said.

Drenth is hoping to get at least a $3,500 Cash for Clunkers discount through his trade-in.

The federal guidelines are still being drawn up, but they should be finalized by next week. In the meantime, if you want to get rid of your old rust bucket, you might want to act, now rather than later.

"I have a feeling this is going to go tremendously fast, I think 250,000 vehicles nationwide will happen extremely quick. They say it's going to go through November 1st. I see this thing going for about a month," Billion said.

Billion says his dealership has received plenty of questions from customers asking if their car is truly clunker-worthy. He says a few deals have already been worked out, pending those new government rules. Billion says cash for clunkers amounts to a stimulus program for dealerships. He expects this push for greener cars will be a smashing success.

A program in Germany similar to Cash for Clunkers has boosted sales there by 40 percent.

Learn More About Cash For Clunkers

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