Cash for clunkers program ends Monday night

By Tory Dunnan - bio | email
Posted by Dana Franks - email

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Cash for Clunkers program will come to an end in less than two hours. Buyers have until 7 p.m. Monday to cash in on a clunker for a new ride.

Many bargain hunters like Marcus Robinson lined up to test-drive cars as the clock neared 7 p.m. Monday, which was the last day of the government's lucrative Cash for cCunkers auto rebates.

"I just came in today, trying to trade my car in right there," Robinson said.

The thought that his car might be a "clunker" or gas guzzler may seem like a laughing matter but,"anything is better than what I got because this been giving me a lot of trouble so I'm just trying to get rid of it," he said.

Greg Sexton is the general sales manager at Bentley Automotive Group. The program helps him close the hood on deals. Company-wide, they've cashed in on about 140 trade-ins.

"We've seen our business increase probably on new cars another 20 or 30 percent," said Sexton.

Sexton walked WAFF 48 News back to the "clunkers" - a line of dinged and scratched up, high mileage cars and trucks.

"Haul 'em off to the recycler and we are done," he explained.

A 1989 rusty Chevy pickup truck was one of the last clunkers to be traded in for a brand-new car. The driver got a 2009 GMC truck.

Bentley Auto dealerships extended about $5000,000 in government rebates for the Cash for Clunkers program. Now they've got to wait to get that money back.

"We've been paid probably on 20 percent of what we've applied for," said Sexton.

That's a cash flow slowdown proceeded by a couple months of trade-in madness.

"Crazy from a standpoint of some pretty clunky clunkers or it's sad to see some pretty nice vehicles headed to the recycler," he said.

©2009 WAFF. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.