This cash for clunkers program is a completely flawed program. The individuals who drive cars that would qualify as a 'clunker' can't afford to buy a new car. Or if they can afford a new car and their car is classified as a clunker it's worth more than $4500 so they'd just resell it.
I've been driving my 2000 Grand Jeep Cherokee for 7 years an I was determined to drive it until it rolled over and died. My 4 wheel drive is out which makes it not the most terribly safe car in the world and it's blue book value is under $2,000. The transmission is slipping, it has over 135,000 miles on it and I'm concerned about safety with the new baby. I feel like it could die any day or last another year and a half.
The husband works for Ford and we get a pretty sweet discount. We also qualify for 0%financing. We are the perfect storm that this bill was designed for. So am I buying a hybrid? No. I'm buying an Edge. I'm trading in my SUV for a more economical cross-over all wheel drive. You'll probably find truck drivers trading in their old trucks for new trucks with better gas mileage.
Congress set out to create a bill that would encourage people to get rid of their old gas guzzlers and buy cars that would have a less damaging effect on the environment. The cash for clunkers program will have little to no effect on the environment and a good portion of the money will most likely go unused due to the stipulations put on the bill. If congress can't perfect a program as simple as getting environmentally damaging cars off the road- why are we going to trust them with brain surgery?