Register now for free access to - this week only.

Incentives plunge -- but are still high

Jim Henry is a special correspondent for Automotive News.
It's hard to decide which is more amazing: how much incentives have fallen from a year ago or how high they still are.

For instance, according to, Chrysler's average incentive was down almost $1,000 per vehicle in May, to $3,115 from $4,101 in May 2009.

The average industry incentive was $2,603, down from $2,943 a year earlier, according to the consumer shopping and research Web site.

Lower inventory makes it possible to cut discounts, said. On the other hand, as finance managers know, automakers don't dare cut incentives too much when everybody has them.

ATTENTION COMMENTERS: Automotive News has monitored a significant increase in the number of personal attacks and abusive comments on our site. We encourage our readers to voice their opinions and argue their points. We expect disagreement. We do not expect our readers to turn on each other. We will be aggressively deleting all comments that personally attack another poster, or an article author, even if the comment is otherwise a well-argued observation. If we see repeated behavior, we will ban the commenter. Please help us maintain a civil level of discourse.

Email Newsletters
  • General newsletters
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Mondays)
  • (As needed)
  • Video newscasts
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Saturdays)
  • Special interest newsletters
  • (Thursdays)
  • (Tuesdays)
  • (Monthly)
  • (Monthly)
  • (Wednesdays)
  • (Bimonthly)
  • Special reports
  • (As needed)
  • (As needed)
  • Communication preferences
  • You can unsubscribe at any time through links in these emails. For more information, see our Privacy Policy.