Thursday, July 30, 2009

Cash for Clunkers

If you listen to the radio, you know about the Cash for Clunkers program. Basically, if your present vehicle qualifies, you get a government rebate to buy a new car. It's a good deal if you're in the market for a vehicle. I'm not. My pickup qualifies but it's still got a couple of things going for it. It's paid for, and it's paid for. I don't need a truck note right now.

However, the program requires that the trade-in vehicle be scrapped. Really. According to The Town Talk,
The salient information, in Section 599 of the CARS Act of 2009, details how the administration wants auto dealers to permanently disable the engine in any vehicle used in the deceptively named "Cash for Clunkers" program. That's necessary to ensure a trade-in vehicle will not "be returned to use as an on-road automobile."

The legislation even provides "a quick, inexpensive, and environmentally safe process" to do the fatal deed: Drain the oil from the crankcase. Fill the crankcase with a solution of 40 percent sodium silicate and 60 percent water. Run the engine at low speeds until it is inoperable.
That would do it. It would be like running sand through the engine. Tough on the bearings.

Why disable the vehicles? The government doesn't want them back on the road.

I think this is another government program with good intentions and bad execution. It's just another government freebie.


ASM826 said...

It's not free. Taxpayers are paying for it. That would be you and me.

It is not a good deal for us. It's a good deal for the auto manufacturers.

TheAxe said...

Yeah, going make it harder for young people to find a cheap used car too.

J said...

I thought about replacing my 98 Dodge Ram pickup with a small Ford pickup via the clunker program. It's eligible for the $4500 max. As its value is ~$2,500 I'd be ~$2,000 to the good. Only problem is, All I'm eligible for is a car, not a small pickup. So I'm keeping my old Ram.

Pawpaw said...

Why wouldn't you be eligible for a small pickup truck?

J said...

The replacement gas-friendly vehicle has to have a MPG figure a certain number below the guzzler. I guess the small Ford trucks use too much gas???

You can go to and there's a form you can fill out which will give you the proper replacements.

No more Chryser products for me--I don't give money to the UAW.

Anonymous said...

The only good news is, you're going to find a better market for spare parts. As I recall, only the engine has to eat it, all the other parts can go on the used parts market.