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Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:38

Obama Signs CARS into Law

The new CARS law allows consumers to receive up to a $4,500 voucher to trade in their old gas guzzlers for a more fuel-efficient new vehicle.  Qualifying vehicles are considered passenger cars, mini vans, SUVs and small light-duty trucks that get less than 18 mpg, and large light-duty trucks that get less than 15 mpg city/highway combined.  For passenger cars, if the new vehicle is at least four mpg more fuel efficient than the old vehicle, consumers will receive a $3,500 voucher toward a new vehicle.  If the new vehicle is at least 10 mpg more fuel efficient than the old vehicle, the voucher is good for $4,500.

CARS is the acronym for "Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Program," and is Title XIII of Bill H.R. 2346. The program will receive an initial allocation of $1 billion funded by the U.S. government as a part of a War appropriations bill. The program is set to begin on July 1 and last through Nov. 1. CARS will be implemented by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which has 30 days from the approval of the bill to post all program details online.

Automakers are very supportive of the new bill.

Suzuki issued a press release saying: ""We applaud President Obama on signing this extraordinary bill, which will help provide financial relief for Americans across the country and further assist with the economic recovery of the automotive marketplace," said Kevin Saito, president of American Suzuki.  "With an added incentive for new car buyers to focus on fuel-efficient vehicles, Suzuki is poised for an increase in dealer traffic thanks to the CARS program.  Better yet, we not only offer these people more efficient vehicles, we offer cars, trucks and SUVs that are fun to drive and look great on the road."

For more information on obtaining a CARS voucher for purchase of a new vehicle, consumers can visit www.cars.gov

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