Volkswagen Wants to Make Coronavirus Car Buying Less Terrifying

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
volkswagen wants to make coronavirus car buying less terrifying

Volkswagen has decided to waive up to six months of payments for customers who lost their jobs due to the economic complications of the coronavirus pandemic. Of course, there’s a catch. Customers have to qualify for VW’s expansion of its “Community-Driven Promise” and must have recently purchased a new vehicle, though avenues exist to help existing customers who aren’t brazen enough to buy a new car after a viral outbreak.

The manufacturer previously said it would defer payments up to 90 days for existing Volkswagen Credit (VCI) customers affected by the economic crisis. While most automakers are trying to sweeten the pot while demand is down, deals and relief packages have rolled out pretty gradually. By contrast, VW seems to be doing quite a bit all at once — here’s how one goes about getting into those programs.

To qualify for the deferments, customers need a decent credit history and must have lost their jobs within the first 90 days of taking ownership on a new VW model. They also must be the recipient of unemployment benefits and have to prove they were cut over economic reasons — throwing a fit and quitting won’t work. While the car could be purchased (not leased) anytime within a 12-month window, interested parties must also prove they’ve been employed full time for at least 12 weeks prior to their termination.

Those stipulations will probably limit the number of takers. But with many Americans out of work right now, VW may still find plenty of applicants. The ones that qualify will see VW waiving up to six months worth of payments, up to $750 per month.

Earlier in the month, the manufacturer launched its Community-Driven Promise initiative aimed at keeping VCI customers from defaulting. It includes deferments of up to 90 days, along with 72-month/zero-interest loans and lease extensions of up to six months. The program only lasts through the end of April, so those wondering if they’re eligible should hit up VW to see all available offers.

If Volkswagen isn’t your brand, most automakers’ financial arms are offering some form of payment relief — most of which expire within a similar time frame. Honda, Acura, Kia, Hyundai and Mitsubishi all have deferment deals of their own. Of course, you may be able to negotiate something with your own auto lender if you’re proactive and jobless. Just remember that interest will continue to accrue during the deferral period, likely leaving you paying more in the long term.

[Image: U.J. Alexander/Shutterstock]

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4 of 11 comments
  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Apr 16, 2020

    Unfortunately it does not work for me. First I paid cash for my last two new car purchases. And secondly I never owned VW to begin with. P.S. IMO if someone is living from paycheck to paycheck it may be not a good idea to buy a VW. Or Mercedes, or even Porsche (which is a rebadged VW).

    • See 1 previous
    • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Apr 17, 2020

      @RHD In my life time bad thing happened with frightening regularity (usually once or twice in a decade. I can start with the collapse of Soviet Union, and I mean Collapse, like GD in 1930s in USA. Then there was the Asian financial crisis which meant you lost most of your savings. Then there was DotCom bust, the Great Recession, the Great COVID-19, COVID-20, COVID-21 and so on.

  • Detroit-X Detroit-X on Apr 17, 2020

    Risking buying a VW is terrifying enough, for this past VW owner.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic And this too shall pass.....Ford went thru this when the model T was introduced. It took the moving assembly line to make real money. As time progressed, it got refined, eventually moving to the Model A. Same kind of hiccups with fuel injection, 4 speed automatic, Firestone tires, dashboards with no radio knobs, etc, etc, etc. Same thing with EVs. Yep, a fire or two in the parking lot, espresso time at the charging stations, other issues yet to be encountered, just give it time. 🚗🚗🚗
  • Art Vandelay 2025 Camaro and Challenger
  • Mike Beranek Any car whose engine makes less than 300 ft-lbs of torque.
  • Malcolm Mini temporarily halted manual transmission production but brought it back as it was a surprisingly good seller. The downside is that they should have made awd standard with the manual instead of nixing it. Ford said recently that 4dr were 7% manual take rate and I think the two door was 15%.
  • Master Baiter It’s hard to make predictions, especially about the future. It will be interesting to see if demand for Ford’s EVs will match the production capacity they are putting on line.