AutoNation, which operates over 300 dealerships in the U.S., has begun offering a new incentive program that covers up to six months of car payments on a new or used vehicle if the buyer loses his or her job. The "Payment Protection" program, which is similar to the Hyundai Assurance program that the Korean automaker began offering earlier this year, tackles one of the major issues causing the recent slump in sales: consumer confidence. The program is currently available at 33 South Florida dealerships, will provide payments to cover the loan during the first year of purchase and comes at no additional cost to consumers. However, there is an additional 90-day waiting period and, that's assuming buyers are able to secure a car loan in the first place.

[Source: Reuters | Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty]