Data Released on Clunkers

After the Obama administration witheld specific information regarding the types of cars purchased through the Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act, more commonly known as “Cash for Clunkers,” the government posted the findings on Wednesday. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood had previously ensured that the findings would be released by last Sunday.

’09 Lotus Elise

Why the delay? Maybe it’s because the administration finds it embarrassing that luxury cars are apparently being purchased, and that six in ten of top cars purchased are not made by Detroit.

The original report says, in part, “The limited information shows most buyers are not picking Ford, Chrysler or General Motors vehicles, and six of the top 10 vehicles purchased are Honda, Toyota and Hyundai.”

According to the report released Wednesday, the most popular car purchased was the Toyota Corolla, while the third most popular was the Honda Civic. Of the new vehicles, 17.9% were manufactured by Toyota, 11.6% by Honda, 7% by Nissan and 6.6% by Hyundai.

The report boasts that the Big Three’s share in the program (45%) is equivalent to its overall share in the auto market.  

The top 10 trade-in vehicles were Fords, Jeeps, Chevrolets and Dodges. The most traded-in vehicle was the Ford Explorer., a website specializing in automotive information, provides a list of eligible new cars, which includes 25 Hyundai models as well as 64 Toyota models.

Luxury vehicles such as the BMW 3 Series, Lotus Elise, Mercedes-Benz M-Class, Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder and Hummer H3T are included.

Now that the information has been released, it will help measure the success and be important to senators and congressmen now being asked to pump another $2 billion into the system.

It was apparently quite easy for the Obama administration to release the information. Data is compiled electronically directly from the car dealerships by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration according to the “Requirements for Dealer Reimbursement” section of The Rule provided by the official