In light of the automaker benefits and car buyer assistance in the recently-passed stimulus package, analysts at R. L. Polk & Co. estimate there will be an average rebate of $330 for every vehicle sold this year. By allowing buyers to deduct the sales tax from a new vehicle purchase from their income taxes, Polks sees a sales increase of 94,000 units this year.

By contrast, the rebate provision in the original stimulus bill allowed buyers to deduct the interest on their car loans from their income taxes, in addition to the sales tax. Polk predicted the average rebate in that case would have been $1,250, and the U.S. light vehicle unit sales would increase by 359,000 units this year.

That would still only be a tiny bump in national volume when compared to Hyundai's gains due to its Hyundai Assurance Program: the Korean marque saw January sales rise by 14%, compared to a 37% drop suffered by the industry overall. And commenting on Germany's €2,500 rebate for people buying new cars, Polk figured the country could see 200,000 more cars sold this year, with smaller cars taking up much of that volume.

[Source: Polk]

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