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You Get a Year to Get That Thing Off the Road

May 5th, 2009 by Steven Gardner
Before

Before

After

After

The U.S. House of Representatives agreed on a deal that could net you a $4,500 voucher if you trade in your gas guzzling behemoth for a nifty little efficient number. For passenger cars a 4-mile-per-gallon difference is worth $3,500. For the full pot you need to show a 10 mpg gain.

This thing still has to go to the Senate.

After the jump you’ll find Bainbridge Island Democratic Congressman Jay Inslee’s take on the “Cash for Clunkers” agreement and a pretty specific explanation of how it would work. I didn’t include the graph, but the written explanation should suffice.


Inslee Statement on “Cash for Clunkers” Agreement

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) made the following statement on the announcement by the White House that members of the House of Representatives have reached agreement on a fleet modernization, or “cash-for-clunkers,” proposal:

“After weeks of discussions, my colleagues and I reached an agreement on the ‘cash for clunkers’ fleet modernization policy last night,” said Inslee. “This will give consumers an incentive to trade in their older-model gas-guzzlers for new, fuel-efficient vehicles. It will save consumers money at the pump and at the dealership, and will cut down on carbon pollution going into our air and water.

“Reaching an agreement on the Cash for Clunkers policy is the first of many resolved disagreements we will encounter in moving a new energy policy through Congress. This deal proves that the committee and the Congress can work together to find a consensus on the overall plan.”

“In our meeting today, President Obama said that once in a while when you’re in Congress, you do things that really matter in a historic sense,” said Inslee. “This energy legislation is one of those chances.”

“I’m also proud to note that President Obama today mentioned the McKinstry Company in Seattle as an example of how energy efficiency programs create jobs. The larger bill now being discussed will do the same for communities around Washington state and around the country. I look forward to the launch of this bill as the next great leap forward in the New Apollo Energy Project.”

Below is a fact sheet on the details of the agreement:

“Cash for Clunkers” Agreement

Consumers may trade in their old, gas-guzzling vehicles and receive vouchers worth up to $4,500 to help pay for new, more fuel efficient cars and trucks. The program will be authorized for up to one year and provide for approximately one million new car or truck purchases. The agreement divides these new cars and trucks into four categories. All mpg below relate to the values displayed on new vehicle window stickers.

Passenger Cars: The old vehicle must get less than 18 mpg. New passenger cars with mileage of at least 22 mpg are eligible for vouchers. If the mileage of the new car is at least 4 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new car is at least 10 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

Small Trucks (and SUVs): The old vehicle must get less than 18 mpg. New small trucks or SUVs with mileage of at least 18 mpg are eligible for vouchers. If the mileage of the new truck or SUV is at least 2 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new truck or SUV is at least 5 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

Large Light-Duty Trucks: The old vehicle must get less than 18 mpg. New large trucks (pick-ups and vans weighing between 6,000 and 8,500 pounds) with mileage of at least 15 mpg are eligible for vouchers. If the mileage of the new truck is at least 1 mpg higher than the old truck, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new truck is at least 2 mpg higher than the old truck, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

Work Trucks: Under the agreement, consumers can trade in a pre-2002 work truck (defined as a pick-up truck or cargo van weighing from 8,500-10,000 pounds) and receive a voucher worth $3,500 for a new work truck in the same or smaller weight class. There will be a finite number of these vouchers based on this vehicle class’s market share. There are no EPA mileage measures for these trucks; however, because newer models are cleaner than older models, the age requirement ensures that the trade will improve environmental quality. Consumers can also “trade down,” receiving a $3,500 voucher for trading in an older work truck and purchasing a pick-up or van weighing between 6,000-8,500 lbs.

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8 Responses to “You Get a Year to Get That Thing Off the Road”

  1. Kathryn Simpson Says:

    Old clunker is only worth $500. But you get $4500 voucher towards the purchase of a new vehicle. Gee, I wonder who really pays the $4500. Would that be TAXPAYERS???

    Come on! I’m not interested in my taxes paying for someone else’s new car.

    Regards,
    Kathryn Simpson

  2. Jim C. Says:

    I hope this government “help” program doesn’t encourage people, who maybe can’t afford a new car to begin with, to go out and get in debt for something that they don’t really need. How long will it take someone to see an actual savings in fuel costs to make up for the money spent?

    But I guess, it is all about politicians making themselves feel like they are helping!

  3. James M. Olsen, Shining City Media Says:

    Jay who? Bainbridge where?

  4. Mary Colborn Says:

    What a wonderful idea! I asked Larry Seaquist about something like this years ago. Glad to see that others are thinking of the same thing. It will help people get into better, more reliable vehicles, while pulling gas guzzling, carbon spewing junkers off the road. Then I would love to see the materials from these old junkers recycled and used. We can use the steel, etc.

    Great idea all around!!!

  5. BlueLight Says:

    “Ask not what your country can do for you…”

    How quaint.

  6. Kevin Says:

    At least with this plan, we can actually get someting out of it instead of billions going to these automakers to continue operating a unsuccessful business. You get a new car, salesman, get commission, dealership get it’s incentive from manufacturer and the manufacturer records a sale. What did you get for the last bailout?

  7. Jerry Says:

    But do the old “clunkers” get scrapped or are they back on the used car market? If the latter, then nothing is cleaned up at all and this is just another auto company bailout. IOW, a taxpayer-funded factory rebate.

  8. Registered Voter Says:

    Can I get a Hummer with this?

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