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For vehicles with their engines disabled, the clunkers sure are moving fast.

At 10 a.m. yesterday, a gauge on the CARS website declared that there was estimated $779 million left in the $1 billion fund that is being used to take low-mpg vehicles off the road in exchange for new, more efficient vehicles. Late last night came news that the government was worried that a backlog of unprocessed purchases might mean that the fund was actually almost tapped out and that CARS (cash for clunkers) could be suspended.

So, what's the news today? Well, it looks like people can still trade their clunkers in for now. Michigan Senator Carl Levin told the AP that Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood confirmed that CARS deals will be honored at least for today and that some Congresspeople and White House are trying to find money to keep the program alive beyond today. The Detroit News reports that the goal is to find another $2 billion in emergency funding for CARS. The money could come from the $787 billion stimulus bill that was passed in February. Currently, the official CARS site has the following emblazoned at the top: "Qualified consumers may participate in the CARS Program between July 1, 2009 and November 1, 2009 or when authorized funds are no longer available." Not a lot of detail there.

If you're now stuck with a clunker you wish you'd traded in last week, perhaps you'll enjoy the Cash For Clunkers Blues video by 12-year-old Connor James Pasch that you can find after the break. Also on the other side are two clips of just what it means when the clunkers get their engines deactivated. It's not pretty.

[Source: Detroit News, AP]
Photo by dno1967. Licensed under Creative Commons license 2.0.










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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 3 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Just adding my two cents here:

      1. This program is too "succssful" because Congress watered down the requirements. I tell you folks, the rules should be changed and the clunker requirements should be for real gas hog cars, while the new car requirements should be for extremely efficient cars. This will only move us more quickly towards our goal (right folks, we have a goal here, don't we) of reducing our dependance on gasoline and foreign oil, reducing pollution, trimming our trade deficit, and fighting climate change.

      2. If Congress is going to keep extending the coverage of this program, then has anyone thought about the impacts of future prospective buyers of plug-in vehicles when they start to become mainstream in 2012? All potential buyers of new cars could be tapped out by then. In this regard, I think cash for clunkers could do more harm than good when it comes to alternative fueled vehicles like plug-ins and pure ev's.

      -bjd
      • 5 Years Ago
      They need to revise this before pushing more money into it, its just people buy still inefficient cars which are still gonna keep the oil companies owning us and enlarging our national debt. Do they not realize if we went super green that our country could lose some national debt, a ton. We push all the money out of our country on on fuels and energys by paying other countries for them, we need to make sure that we can make our own for the future so we dont get owned by the rest of the world.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Who is responsible for this failure to focus CFC on efficient cars instead of gas guzzlers? The President or Congress? I know Congress sweetened it for the big Auto companies. But this just goes to show that government and big business are useless when it comes to the environment, only we as the people can change things. I for one will not buy another car unless it is an EV, my next car I plan to buy is the Nissan EV to be unveiled on Sunday. My next house will have solar panels and I will as close as possible to off the grid. I am sick of governments dragging their feet. It is time for people to take over.