DETROIT — Another month, another boost in customer rebates from General Motors. This time it is $500 extra on a passel of SUVs and full-sized vans.
A week earlier it was $500 extra on the big Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. Those two actions could cost GM more than $100 million a month.
Last week’s $500 bonuses went to the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, Tahoe and Suburban; the GMC Envoy, Yukon and Yukon XL; and the Oldsmobile Bravada SUVs, as well as the Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana big vans.
Ford Division, the “me too” champion of the incentive wars, lost no time responding to GM. Ford plunked another $500 on the Explorer four-door and Expedition SUVs and the Econoline/Club Wagon.
The rebate is now $2,500 on all those GM and Ford vehicles except the Expedition, which has a $2,000 rebate. Financing starts at 0 percent on many of them.
How much will all this cost? In December, GM sold 218,033 of the pickups, vans and SUVs mentioned above. At $500 per vehicle, that’s $109 million. Figuring the entire shot, which is now $2,500, GM would put out $545 million.
Comparable monthly payouts for Ford Division would be about $65 million for the extra $500 and about $320 million for a month at $2,000 to $2,500, based on December sales of about 130,000 of the affected models.
All the trucks, vans and SUVs affected are 2003 models. GM’s programs expire Feb. 28; Ford’s expires March 3.
The Chrysler group made a few changes in its rebates, but fewer than GM and Ford. The Dodge Durango now brings $4,500, up from $3,000, and Chrysler and Dodge all-wheel-drive minivans offer $3,500 givebacks instead of $3,000.
Kia now offers 0 percent financing for 36 months instead of 60, and Isuzu is paying $2,500 to $4,500 on 2002 models instead of offering low-rate loans.
Suzuki has adopted 0 percent financing for 48 months on all 2003 models.