Retiring an Old Friend
Although the federal government's Cash for Clunkers program is not without its problems, it has proven popular with consumers, who have been turning over their old vehicles by the thousands in order to receive a credit against a newer model. (It's so popular that the House and Senate have sent a $2 billion extension to the White House for President Obama's signature.) Climate scientists haven't been impressed with the program's ability to make a serious impact on greenhouse gas emissions. But it is helping sell more cars in a badly bruised market.
Sales figures coming in suggest many program participants are indeed going for hybrid and efficient small cars. Ford, in particular, seems to be a big winner, with the high-mpg Focus showing the most sales. Strong sales are also reported for Ford's Escape small SUV (there is a hybrid version). Efficient Toyota and Honda models, many of which are now assembled in North America, are also showing solid growth.
This well-used, 1989-90 Dodge Ram 350 was turned in at McKenzie Pontiac-GMC-Buick in Milton Florida.
This old boat might still have style, but the inefficient car is being put out to the clunker pasture.
End for a Big SUV?
This massive Ford Excursion was spotted in front of the Kia Autosport dealership in Milton, Florida.
This old beater looks like it logged a lot of miles.
Even family vans are getting turned in as clunkers for replacement.
Polluting Rust Buckets
One of the goals of the Cash for Clunkers program is retiring some of the worst air polluters.
Some "clunkers" being turned in saw better days as fine automobiles, such as this Mercedes on the Dublin Toyota lot in California.
The Cash for Clunkers campaign has injected new life into a nearly moribund network of auto dealers, inspiring many to break out creative advertising.
Traded Clunkers in L.A.
Cars traded in for Cash for Clunkers at the Galpin Ford dealership in Los Angeles.
Clunkers in Nevada
Colorful activity at Lawley Honda - Nissan in Sierra Vista, Arizona.
A clunker display on a car lot in Ellicott City, Maryland.
Trading up SUVs
Mike Hainstock traded in his much beloved 1992 Blazer for a newer, cleaner Dodge. "Goodbye old friend," he says.
Ca$h 4 Clunkers
Eye-catching advertising helps bring in recession-worried customers.