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Hyundai Takes First Trade-In for the 'Car Allowance Rebate System'

July 09, 2009

After months of debate and rounds of legislation, the wait has ended. Consumers can finally take advantage of the government's "Car Allowance Rebate System" (CARS), and Hyundai is leading the way. Katherine Michon of Arlington, Va. was the first to trade-in an eligible clunker for a new Hyundai, replacing her 15 mile-per-gallon 1995 Ford Explorer with a 26 mile-per-gallon Hyundai Elantra Touring, at Alexandria Hyundai in Alexandria, Va.

Hyundai buyers will receive the full rebate allocated under the CARS program (also known as "cash for clunkers") when an eligible trade-in is exchanged for a qualifying Hyundai model. Hyundai is the first automaker to extend the government incentive to consumers, accelerating its implementation by several weeks by backing dealerships with short-term cash advances as the government organizes the rollout of the program industry-wide.

In May, Hyundai research showed that 11 percent of car buyers delayed their purchases until the CARS legislation was resolved. "We appreciate what Washington has done getting the program completed, but it's clear that the wait has left many potential car-buyers on the sidelines," said John Krafcik, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor America. "We thought it was imperative to get funding to our dealers so that they could implement the program right away and satisfy the demand they've been hearing from consumers."

Under the CARS program, consumers qualify for a $4,500 rebate on the purchase or lease of new vehicles that achieve 10 miles per gallon more than a trade-in car or five miles per gallon or more than a trade-in light truck. New vehicles that achieve between 4 to 9 mpg more than a trade-in car, or 2 to 4 mpg more than a trade-in light truck qualify for a $3,500 incentive. See for complete details.

Thirteen Hyundai models and engine combinations qualify for the CARS incentive program, which requires passenger cars achieve 22 mpg or more combined fuel economy, and light trucks achieve 18 mpg or better combined fuel economy.

  • Accent
  • Elantra
  • Elantra Touring
  • Entourage
  • Sonata 2.4L
  • Sonata 3.3L
  • 2010 Genesis Coupe 2.0L
  • Tiburon 2.0L
  • Tucson 2.0L
  • Tucson 2.7L
  • Santa Fe 2.7L
  • Santa Fe 3.3L
  • Veracruz

Five Hyundai models achieve 30 miles per gallon or more on the highway -Accent, Elantra, Elantra Touring, Genesis Coupe 2.0L and Sonata 2.4L. Hyundai ranks third in corporate average fuel economy according the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, so consumers will realize further cost savings by stepping into a more fuel-efficient model than they currently drive.

The CARS incentive program complements all existing special incentives and financing options from the manufacturer, including Hyundai Assurance, which allows consumers to return their vehicle if they unexpectedly lose their income, and Hyundai Assurance Gas Lock, which offers a year's worth of gas at a guaranteed price of $1.49 per gallon. Visit for details.


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