Major automotive aftermarket associations, including the Auto Care Association, Tire Industry Association and Service Station Dealers of American and Allied Trades, the Automotive Oil Change Association, and the Automotive Service Association, sent a letter to Congressional leaders in opposition of a new “Cash for Clunkers” type program from being included in the next COVID-19 stimulus legislation.
The members of these organizations represent automotive service and repair professionals, tire dealers, distributors and manufacturers that depend primarily on post-warranty vehicles for revenue. In 2009, during the Obama Administration, the Consumer Assistance Recycles and Save (CARS) program was implemented as a response to the 2008 recession. The goals of the program were to reinvigorate the automotive industry, improve fuel efficiency and cut carbon dioxide emissions. However, evidence suggests the program functioned as a boon to automakers alone. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) and Brookings Institution also raised questions about whether the program was successful in stimulating the economy.
Their letter states:
What we do know is that this $3 billion program removed approximately 700,000 vehicles from independent automotive repair shops. These vehicles were destroyed by the federal government after taxpayer dollars were spent up to $4500 per vehicle. The program was beneficial to auto manufacturers rather than acting as a stimulus to the entire automotive industry.
Read the rest of this press release HERE