• Jul 6th 2009 at 4:00PM
  • 20
Historically speaking, Canada has gotten the blunt end of the stick when it comes to new car pricing compared to its southern neighbors. Pricing on many vehicles versus an otherwise identical U.S. counterpart has long been comparatively inflated, and America's recently passed Cash-For-Clunkers bill has left many Canadian consumers feeling even more short-changed than normal.

But help may be on the way. The Vancouver Sun reports that Jim Prentice, Canada's environmental minister, is reviewing whether the Great White North should get a Cash-For-Clunkers scrappage incentive program of its own. According to the story, Prentice has met with "a number of auto manufacturers over the past few months" in order to discuss whether the government should issue its own $3,500 incentives to junk old vehicles and purchase new ones.

Interestingly, before a decision is made, Prentice plans to analyze whether a small, existing auto salvage trade-in program in Alberta has had any effect. That program apparently gives eligible owners a comparatively modest sum – $300 – for scrapping their 1995 or older vehicles. Instead of the cash incentive, alternative awards for the current program include up to $490 toward a new bicycle or as much as a year's worth of mass transit passes.

A decision on a Cash-For-Clunkers program for Canada will likely be handed down in the next 60 days.

[Source: The Vancouver Sun | Image: Theo Heimann/Getty]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      Both trucks are car qualify for the Cash For Clunkers but not the motorcycles.

      • 6 Years Ago
      Historically speaking, Canada has gotten the blunt end of the stick when it comes to new car pricing compared to its southern neighbors.

      Why do so many exhausted cars cant recall to factory? VGP-BPS5A
      • 6 Years Ago
      There's a similar program in a county in Nova Scotia too. I can't remember which one - I did an ad for it. It's the same deal as in Alberta though. $300 or a bike or bus pass. 1995 or older I believe.
        • 6 Years Ago
        My bad - I thought it was on by county as only certain counties have advertised it through us.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It's called Retire Your Ride, run through Clean Nova Scotia.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Is there anything Stephen Harper won't buy into? The tar sands environmental and economic nightmare at $64/barrel oil. Sending Canadian troops to Afghanistan. Encouraging Canadian banks to buy up insolvent US companies last year at the height of the financial crises. And now the Cash for Clunkers Program. Maybe he should consider a job in the Mens Sweater Dept. at the Bay.
      • 6 Years Ago
      They couldn't have started talking about this a few months earlier? :(
        • 6 Years Ago
        Don't forget the idiots are out for the summer anyway so even if they decide to do it nothing will get passed until the fall so don't expect to see it until Christmas or the New Year. Instead they will depress car sales for the rest of the year by talking about it. Why can't politicians EVER keep their mouths SHUT?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Don't do it.

      Car dealers are increasing prices for good MPG cars because of the increased demand (artificial) from the cash for clunkers program. Not being critical, but it is basic supply/demand economics.

      With the price increases, some markets will will give consumers no net benefit. It is poorly written legislation. Especially since the turned in cars have a trade-in value of equal the scrap metal -- because all cars under this program must be taken off the road. So some cars that qualify, may actually be worth more than the redemable voucher.

      I don't qualify for cash for clunkers because my car already gets good gas mileage. But my dad swears by the car buying process here:
      • 6 Years Ago
      To MoeJoe: I cant agree with you more. Living in Windsor, I frequently cross over to the D and it seems that even 3 year old MI cars are in worse running condition than 15 yr old Ontario cars, lol. That being said, until Jan 01 of this year, GM Canada (I work at a dealer) had a program called 'Car Heaven' where cars 95 and older were taken off the road and recycled. The incentive of $750 (was $1000 in previous years) was half paid for by the Ministry of Environment and the offer half of the bill flipped by GM. This program was great as I saw a TONNE of Cutlass Cierras, 6000LEs, Neons, Shadows, etc, frequently removed from the road...but again, these 'clunkers' were Cadillacs compared to some MI cars, lol. Bottom line, bring on the program!
      • 6 Years Ago
      If I get another idiot in here asking about free cash for clunkers I'm going to lose it. I hate when people think they are going to get free money on their piece of junk, then try to grind me and then sell them the damn car and make nothing because it turns out they couldn't finance a bag of chips!! Most people who are driving those pieces of crap don't have money or credit, they are called ROACHES!! I hate roaches. you know what if you cant afford a car with cash and your bank says NO and all the subprime (roach credit) lending places say NO, why would you still come to me and try to have me finance you! Stay home, get a job and save your money! Cash for clunkers is a bad investment for everyone!
      • 6 Years Ago
      The laws are much different over here. (in Ontario anyway)
      Not any car is allowed on the road, it has to pass safety and emission tests. When I went to Detroit last Friday it seems to me that if it runs in any form, its allowed on the road. You never see anything even close to the cars that you see in USA. There are literally rust buckets and safety hazards on the road.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Sorry, we have those annual inspections down here in the US too but they don't make any difference. They're a joke because any time we try to get serious it turns into a "You're discriminating against someone" argument so we just give everyone a big pass.
        • 6 Years Ago
        yes - but safety is only applied when a vehicle is purchased

        institute stricter safety inspections (ie no rust holes the size of a pencil, etc.) - and make them annual (like in new brunswick) or biennial
        that would create more auto service industry jobs
        and increase demand for parts (new, second-hand, remanufactured)
        if you can't afford to keep the old clunker safetied - it goes off the road

        and someone figure out how to properly test emissions at the tailpipe

        after all that has happened then think about getting the really polluting vehicles off the road
      • 6 Years Ago
      Please please don't report on this again. I sell cars and anytime there are reports of this kind of stuff people don't buy until the program is official. By reporting this now, it will slow automotive sales down, big time. In Saskatchewan when the saskparty came in their promise was no PST on used cars. Needless to say, nobody sold used cars during the election. So any reporters want to report on this and collapse and already weakened industry go ahead, but your only going to mess things up for people already in this business. I'm totally against cash for clunkers, all it does is takes taxpayers money and pays a loser a bunch of money that he isnt entitled to anyway. The program in Alberta with free bus passes or a few hundred bucks is a waste of time and money. In the 5yrs I was there I think I saw 3 people take advantage of this program. Governments should stay out of private industry. Look at GM, now the govt wants to sell vehicles for them to!
        • 6 Years Ago
        I think you're overly concerned; the Tories have been promising a revised auto scrappage program for a long while now, most recently saying that one would be in place by January 2009. With the statement this morning that the Government won't be returning to a budget surplus in 2013-14 as they had previously stated just 2 weeks ago, it's unlikely that this announcement will see much traction as it will only further push out when we return to budget surpluses.
      • 6 Years Ago
      "existing auto salvage trade-in program in Alberta has had any effect"

      The program orginated in Alberta, known as "Car Heaven Alberta", and was expanded nationally by the Conservatives in 2008 and given the ever-so-original name "Car Heaven" which is run by a not-for-profit program. As a program, it's pretty laughable; for scrapping their pre-1996 vehicle, owners are offered the following incentives:
      - a discount towards a public transit pass,
      - a discount towards a bicycle,
      - a discount towards a membership in a car-sharing program,
      - $300 cash

      Given that vehicles cost more in Canada than the U.S., the cash incentive for scrapping your car should be more than the $4500 USD offered by the US program not the ridiculous $3500 CAD being thrown around!
        • 6 Years Ago
        I turned in a 1997 Malibu after swiping the hood, front head lights, grill and misc other small parts to repair another damaged Malibu.. also swiped the alternator, starter, side mirrors, and rear tail lights just because I knew I'd want them someday.

        Still got $320 for it at the scrap yard... Granted, the price of steel was pretty much at the highest it went, but to get only $300 from the gov't is pretty sad.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ummm, pretty sure we've been doing this for almost 2 Years now.....in BC at least anyways

        • 6 Years Ago
        Yes, BC has its own program.


        this article also expands on what nocashformorons was talking about in regards to Alberta's program. Of course the article ruins it by mentioning the Conservatives and lambasting them for the idea. People like Gary (Lowe, above) love mentioning the terrible job conservatives are doing and how this is another terrible idea, when BC's program (a much more liberal government) goes much farther than the Conservatives' "Alberta power base" (and despite the fact that Canada is weathering the recession better than many industrialized nations)

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