Hyundai is the first automaker to start accepting trade-ins under the pending Cash-for-Clunkers legislation, and during the first week of trade-ins CARS (Car Allowance Rebate System) rebates have accounted for seven percent of all sales for Hyundai Motor America.
While the Cash-for-Clunkers incentives have yet to be finalized by the U.S. government, automakers have been given a guarantee that all CARS trade-ins would be honored retroactively until July 2nd. In the mean time, Hyundai corporate is offering its dealers loans to cover the difference so customers can walk away with a new Hyundai at a significantly reduced cost.
The CARS legislation gives a $4,500 rebate on a new car when it gets 10 mpg or more better fuel mileage than the one traded in. The rebate is $3,500 on vehicles that get 4 to 9 mpg better or trucks that get 2 to 4 mpg better.
The most popular CARS purchase at Hyundai is for the Elantra compact car (pictured above), which accounts for 41 percent of all CARS deals at Hyundai in the first week. One reason for this as that customers can walk away with an Elantra for just $8,620 after trade.
The Sonata mid-sized sedan is the next popular purchase. In total Hyundai has 13 vehicle/engine combinations that are eligible for rebates under the CARS legislation, including the 2010 Genesis Coupe 2.0T.
“The early response we’re seeing demonstrates the CARS program is working, with inefficient gas guzzlers being traded-in for fuel-efficient Hyundai models,” said Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik. “We expect overall sales from this program to grow as consumer awareness increases – it should surpass ten percent of our retail sales this month.”
As for the vehicles traded in, Hyundai’s data shows that 32 percent of all clunkers are Ford products, while 23 percent are Dodges. Surprisingly, the list of clunkers also includes models from such prestigious brands as Jaguar, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz.
Official release after the jump: