By on August 4, 2009

1: Ford Focus

2: Toyota Corolla

3: Honda Civic

4: Toyota Prius

5: Toyota Camry

6: Ford Escape

7: Hyundai Elantra

8: Dodge Caliber

9: Honda Fit

10: Chevrolet Cobalt

[via CNN Money]

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

42 Comments on “Top Ten Cash for Clunker Sellers...”


  • avatar
    BDB

    Not a bad showing by Detroit.

  • avatar
    grog

    I was in a Chrysler/Nissan dealership here in Flyover Country last Saturday test driving an Altima Coupe and the place was MOBBED. And they weren’t there buying Nissans. I talked to the Sales Manager and asked him how many of the sales that day (he didn’t tell me the total number) were due to C4C. Only 3.

    I wonder if there isn’t some kind of halo effect associated with this? Okay, one dealership in one of the more podunk state capitols in ‘Murka isn’t a trend but it’s the only data point I have.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    I assume they were trying to take advantage of Chrysler’s double C4C deal that didn’t last long.

  • avatar
    xyzzy

    In the post on Toyota’s sales, we learned that the Corolla (along with the Yaris) is doing poorly, and then here we see that it’s the #2 C4C trade-in. Something doesn’t match up here.

  • avatar
    KatiePuckrik

    If the US Ford Focus is so woeful, how come so many people want it?

    Maybe this is the reason why Ford won’t bring their Euro Focus over? Because if it ain’t broke….

    This would explain why they brought the Fiesta over since they didn’t have a good small car to sell in the NA market.

    But we can see a trend of people switching to smaller, more sensible sized cars. Another reason why Ford have a better chance of survival than GM and Chrysler, since Ford’s line up is better suited to this trend.

  • avatar
    Joe O

    Ray LaHood, trans secretary, said this was the lifeline for the american automotive industry.

    While I don’t have any context behind those top 10 rankings, it looks like it’ll help ford a tad but mainly benefit Honda and Toyota.

  • avatar
    Lokkii

    we learned that the Corolla (along with the Yaris) is doing poorly, and then here we see that it’s the #2 C4C trade-in. Something doesn’t match up here.

    Well, the article on C4C said that there had only been something like 134,000 C4C transactions total so far. That would suggest that C4C only generated somewhere around 15,000 sales for Corolla (just a guess). Give normal Corolla sales that wouldn’t be a very big bump.

    So both points could be true.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    I think the C4C program has had an effect beyond the people who actually have a qualifying trade. Many people start out thinking they might get in on the C4C deal, find out that they don’t qualify for it, but still find a way to scratch the new car itch.

    ” … it looks like it’ll help ford a tad but mainly benefit Honda and Toyota.”

    Which companies build scads of Corollas and Civics in the US. I’m sure the workers at Honda’s new Indiana Civic factory consider themselves tax paying parts of the American auto industry.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    If the US Ford Focus is so woeful, how come so many people want it?

    On the whole, it’s not nearly as popular as are the Corolla or the Civic.

    What these figures tell me is that the C4C buyer is not typical of the usual US car buyer. A lot of them are buying cars with sale prices that are below the median. I would assume that some of these buyers are not affluent (they drove old cars because they didn’t have that much money or credit, but the voucher allows them to get a loan that they can afford), while others are frugal (they have money/ credit, but they don’t like to spend it/ use it.)

    The differences indicate that the program may be a success, in that many of these buyers would not have bought a car at all had there been no program. In some cases, the program is a pure giveaway, paying consumers to do something that they would have done anyway, but there may be enough cases when it is a boost to make it worthwhile.

  • avatar
    Joe O

    “Which companies build scads of Corollas and Civics in the US. I’m sure the workers at Honda’s new Indiana Civic factory consider themselves tax paying parts of the American auto industry.”

    I wasn’t considering them otherwise. I was mainly signifying that it was benefitting companies that were in the strongest positions within the U.S. market already.

    Supposedly, these clunkers are worth $2000-2500 a piece on a normal trade-in. So the government is subsidizing about $2000 worth on average, and paying an extra $2000-2500 worth per clunker to destroy a working car.

    My math tells me that if the government simply offered an extra $2000 subsidy on the purchase of a new fuel efficient vehicle, they’d be able to get 500,000 new car purchases per $1 billion.

    Seems like that would’ve been a better use of funds if this was an actual stimulative measure.

  • avatar
    Verbal

    Since the Focus is #1, does that mean they have finally gotten rid of the duct tape under the hood?

  • avatar
    Omoikane

    Corolla/Matrix would be my first choice. Made in USA and Canada, gas miser, unsurpassed reliability, parts easy to find in case of mishaps (collision…). And from a company who didn’t rob the US taxpayers.
    The only reason Corolla’s not selling even better, is Toyota’s unwillingness to discount the product to the extent Chrysler and GM are doing it (in effect bribing the buyers/taxpayers with their own money).
    If Corolla’s numbers would improve, Toyota might just keep NUMMI open.

  • avatar
    Gunit

    …and in other news American spending is up in July while incomes took their largest drop in years.

    How times have changed, US brands capture less than half the market and people post about how that’s pretty good, wow, talk about lowered expectations, ‘we’re number 2′, get used to it.

  • avatar
    BDB

    Katie, the Focus really isn’t that bad for what it is.

    http://www.speedsportlife.com/2008/05/29/avoidable-contact-12-why-the-motoring-press-cant-even-focus-on-its-own-astra/

    How times have changed, US brands capture less than half the market and people post about how that’s pretty good, wow, talk about lowered expectations, ‘we’re number 2′, get used to it.

    They took 47% of C4C sales. That’s better than their market share of 45%.

  • avatar
    Edward Niedermeyer

    Anyone else noticing a pattern in the in-text ads on that list?

  • avatar
    carguy

    IMHO C4C is a waste of money but at least it is working as intended and the bulk of vehicles traded in are SUVs and traded for smaller cars that are mostly made locally.

  • avatar
    qfrog

    So… the real reason for the C4C hold up was due to lack of Caliber inventory? Aren’t those horrid bile flavored crapboxes? I suppose if you’re getting one for $9k off… it makes sense to buy one then maybe trade it for a lil over your cost on a car like a Civic.

  • avatar
    no_slushbox

    The Focus being on top makes sense given that 7 of the top 10 cash-for-clunkers trade-ins were Fords:

    http://jalopnik.com/5328941/ten-most-traded+in-and-purchased-cash-for-clunkers-vehicles/gallery/?selectedImage=2

  • avatar
    Buick61

    Meh, I liked the Caliber SXT I rented. It just needed better fuel economy and a smoother mill and, you know, a real transmission. But even still, I wouldn’t cross it off my shopping list.

    “xyzzy:

    In the post on Toyota’s sales, we learned that the Corolla (along with the Yaris) is doing poorly, and then here we see that it’s the #2 C4C trade-in. Something doesn’t match up here.”

    Because C4C only influenced one week of July’s sales. The Corolla was probably even further off the mark compared to last year before the program kicked in.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    If the US Ford Focus is so woeful, how come so many people want it?

    It isn’t awful as much as it’s disappointing. For two reasons:
    1. They decontented it heavily. The suspension’s less nice, core features like telescoping steering vanished.
    2. The first Focus was, and still is, the only American car that beat the Asians at their own game. Think about what the Tundra must have meant to GM and Ford, now imagine that the Focus did that and worse to Toyota and Honda.

    It’s still better, holistically, than the Cobalt and Caliber, but it’s the failed potential that makes enthusiasts cry.

  • avatar
    suedenim

    EDIT: I’m an idiot who can’t tell the difference between “sell” and “buy.” Ignore this message.

  • avatar
    xyzzy

    no_slushbox :

    The Focus being on top makes sense given that 7 of the top 10 cash-for-clunkers trade-ins were Fords:

    http://jalopnik.com/5328941/ten-most-traded+in-and-purchased-cash-for-clunkers-vehicles/gallery/?selectedImage=2

    Yeah but that list sucks because it lists every model year of the Explorer separately, but not the Jeeps. It would make more sense to group together all the cars of the same generation (for example 1997-2001 Explorers). A list that just says “1997 Explorer, 1998 Explorer, etc” is simply uninteresting.

  • avatar
    suedenim

    Oh, duh.

    I’m missing the fact these are what people are BUYING.

    “Never mind….”

  • avatar
    romanjetfighter

    You’re forgetting US govt. makes 7-9% tax on all the car purchases. So a 20k dollar car gets like 1.5k tax to the state/fed govt.

  • avatar

    Re Grog’s very interesting question (comment #2)

    Humans are herd animals, and my guess is that the press coverage about c4c is bringing a certain number of people into dealers just because they’re hearing about it, and not necessarily because they can take advantage of it. Its’ also possible that the dealer Grog was visiting was actually getting very few sales that day.

  • avatar
    Bunter1

    Re Corrolla & Civic sales.

    I think one item many are missing is that gas was 4 bucks a gallon last summer and these cars were screaming hot.

    So even though their year ago percentage looks weak they actually did very well.

    Evidence?

    Civic was #3 most popular vehicle in the USA last month and the ‘Rollatrix #5, both solidly ahead of the the Silverado und the Focus.

    With as volatile as the market was last summer one has to watch the year to year data comparisons.
    For instance Honda had a strong month last July which makes this year look worse than it was.
    By contrast GM stunk last July which indicates their showing this year was (gulp) even worse than the YTY numbers made it look.

    Just some thoughts.

    Bunter

  • avatar
    ihatetrees

    More interesting would be the bottom ten C4C sellers.

    I wanna meet the piston head who dumps his beater 1995 F250 for $4K off an RX8 R3.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    “My math tells me that if the government simply offered an extra $2000 subsidy on the purchase of a new fuel efficient vehicle, they’d be able to get 500,000 new car purchases per $1 billion.”

    Oddly enough, straight up discounts/rebates are not as motivating as is the cash-for-trash scheme. Rebates used to be effective, but there have been so many of them that now it is just noise. Last month Honda was selling Odyssey minivans at something like $6k under MSRP … and Odyssey still had a horrible month.

    The C4C program, on the other hand, is new enough and perceived to be short-term enough that it is getting people to take notice and take action.

    There is also the motivated spouse factor like this scenario:

    Dear, I’ve been after you to get rid of that POS truck for years now. I’m embarrassed for the neighbors to see it in our driveway, and I don’t care that you think you are going to fix it up nice someday. For heaven’s sake, take the $4500 while we can get it!

    Yes dear.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    I would take an 8 year old Volvo S80 over any of these.

  • avatar
    Greg Locock

    Looks to me like vehicle product development in the USA is dead. Which of those were substantially engineered in the USA? The Caliber I guess, on a modified Zeta platform, and maybe the Cobalt?

    Or am I wrong, again?

  • avatar
    Canuck129

    Bunter1:
    Very well said. Some of these cars are not selling poorly despite their year over year decline. Even if the market were still at 17 million units, Corolla and Civic would still have likely seen a decrease in sales this year just based on fuel prices alone.
    If you want misleading, just wait until the numbers come out for Oct. and Nov. when companies like Hyundai are posting 40%+ increases because of the BRUTAL months they had last year.

  • avatar
    BDB

    Or am I wrong, again?

    Yes. The Focus platform was developed primarily by Ford, not Mazda, though Mazda played a part. It wasn’t just Ford ripping a platform off from Mazda.

  • avatar
    faygo

    @BDB:

    original C170 Focus is pretty much completely a Ford design. Ford of Europe, adapted for the US. then freshened a few times here in the US as Europe moved on to the C1 platform. everyone is back together on the same platform & design for the next Focus, due out late next year or whenever it’s been announced as being on sale.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    It looks increasingly clear that the Senate will approve the House’s measure reallocating $2B from the DOE’s budget to the C4C program:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090805/ap_on_go_co/us_cash_for_clunkers_67

  • avatar
    ihatetrees

    Wow.
    I just noted that the RX8 R3 is NOT on the C4C eligible list.

    Which is odd – the EPA numbers are 16/22 for the Mazda and 14/19 for the Silverado – which is on the list…
    WTF(oilHat)?

  • avatar
    TexN

    USA!!! USA!!! USA!!! hhmmmm………wait a minute…..hhmmmmm…….I’ll get back to you….

  • avatar
    P71_CrownVic

    If the US Ford Focus is so woeful, how come so many people want it?

    Because they are being paid $4500 to get that appliance.

    Plus, the exterior is terrible, the interior is terrible, and it took Ford 2 years to figure out how to make rear headrests and ABS standard.
    People are buying it out of necessity…nobody would look at a car that terrible and say…”I must have that…”

    What I find even more depressing than how For Ford missed the mark with the Focus, is that the MAJORITY of the vehicles bought under the C4C pile of legislation…are IMPORTS.

    I am sure Japan and Korea will be thanking the United States for the great job we did in stimulating THEIR economy.

  • avatar
    quasimondo

    I am sure Japan and Korea will be thanking the United States for the great job we did in stimulating THEIR economy.

    With an export-based economy like theirs and with this nation being their largest market, why wouldn’t they thank the United States for stimulating their economy?

    Wow.
    I just noted that the RX8 R3 is NOT on the C4C eligible list.

    Which is odd – the EPA numbers are 16/22 for the Mazda and 14/19 for the Silverado – which is on the list…
    WTF(oilHat)?

    It’s based on the combined MPG. Combined MPG of the RX8 is 18 MPG, for the Silverado, it’s 17. 18′s the cutoff.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    If only CFC would go until 2011, the Chevy Volt could make the list, standing proudly beside GM’s only other entrant, the Cobalt. Or not.

    Toyota did better than I expected, and Hyundai didn’t do as well as I thought.

  • avatar
    dingram01

    Supposedly, these clunkers are worth $2000-2500 a piece on a normal trade-in. So the government is subsidizing about $2000 worth on average, and paying an extra $2000-2500 worth per clunker to destroy a working car.

    It would be interesting to see a list of the most traded-in vehicles under CFC. At any rate I doubt that trade value on most of these vehicles would be $2000-$2500…maybe more like $1000-$1500. That’s about what mine would have been. Retail it might have been $2500-$3000 at best.

  • avatar
    geeber

    P71_Crown Vic: Because they are being paid $4500 to get that appliance.

    People would also get paid the $4,500 to buy the Cobalt and the Aveo, and they STILL don’t want them. So what is GM’s excuse…?

  • avatar
    Mirko Reinhardt

    @Greg Locock :
    maybe the Cobalt?

    The Cobalt is a straight re-skin of the 1998 Opel Astra sedan.

    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Policecar_antwerp.jpg

    Of course decontented to hell and back.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Subscribe without commenting

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributing Writers

  • Jack Baruth, United States
  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Vojta Dobes, Czech Republic
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Cameron Aubernon, United States
  • J Emerson, United States