EPA Update Causes More Clunker Confusion

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

Think your clunker gets 18 mpg combined? Plan on cashing in on the CARS clunker rebate program? You might want to double check those EPA numbers over at fueleconomy.gov. As part of the buildup to the Cash For Clunker program, the EPA undertook “quality assurance and quality control effort regarding fuel economy calculations on more than 30,000 vehicle model types spanning the past 25 years.” But according to CNN Money, this pre-stimulus housecleaning turned up bad data for about 100 vehicles and ended up changing their clunker rebate eligibility. Although “roughly” the same number of cars became newly eligible as became newly ineligible, this news came as a nasty surprise to owners of the 1993 Camry V6 wagon, 1995 Saab 900S, 1988 Toyota 4Runner and the 1987 Mercury Grand Marquis. And since the EPA’s statistical quality control didn’t take place until the official launch of the program, some shoppers had their deals planned out before realizing that their trade-ins were too efficient to qualify. Meanwhile, dealers have their own complaints about the program.

One anonymous dealer writes:

I wish you would let us opt out of the cash for clunkers deal. Three dealers on the conference call stated that they were not fucking with this bullshit. You wouldn’t believe the bullshit involved in this. I don’t see this costing us any significant sales. We will waste more time fucking with this than it will ever be worth. The rebates are in place to subsidize the deal. Collecting our money will be a full time job.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Italianstallion Italianstallion on Jul 29, 2009

    Wow. I remember hitting 18 mpg with my '87 Grand Marquis on one or two (downhill) highway trips. Other than that, the mileage was abysmal. Still miss the crushed velour, pillow-top bench seats. That, and the ability to gently float over every pothole on the Belt Parkway at 70 mph with just my pinky on the steering wheel.

  • GS650G GS650G on Jul 30, 2009

    It was either find a way to limit the trade in's or pony up more money we don't have. I wonder if the bailed out companies had to face this level of Scrooge when they asked for their money. Big business gets billions while Joe Six pack gets a few coppers for his pickup truck. Get back to work, AIG is waiting on your paycheck to cash.

  • Golden2husky Have to say he did an excellent job on the C7, especially considering the limited budget he was given. I am very happy with my purchase.
  • Marty The problem isn't range; it's lack of electricity in multi-unit building parking. All you need is level 1 - a standard 120v wall socket - and if you're plugged in 10 hours overnight you get 280 miles per week or more. That's enough for most folks but you can use public charging to supplement when needed. Installing conduit circuits and outlets is simple and cheap; no charge stations needed.
  • 2manyvettes Tadge was at the Corvette Corral at the Rolex 24 hour sports car race at the end of January 2023. During the Q&A after his remarks someone stood up and told him "I will never buy an electric Corvette." His response? "I will never sell you an electric Corvette." Take that Fwiw.
  • Socrates77 They're pinching pennies for the investors like always, greed has turned GM into a joke of an old corporate American greed.
  • Analoggrotto looking at this takes me right back to the year when “CD-ROM” first entered public lexicon