DETROIT - Since January, most of General Motors' rebates to buyers of new cars and trucks have ranged from $2,000 to $3,000. Last week, GM moved up to the next level with a flock of $4,000 givebacks.
It will put more financial pressure on GM's rivals, although neither the Chrysler group nor Ford Motor Co. had matched the offer late last week.
Ten nameplates qualify for GM's higher spiffs: Buick LeSabre; Chevrolet S10, Cavalier, Avalanche and Tracker; GMC Sonoma; Oldsmobile Silhouette; and Pontiac Grand Prix, Sunfire, and four-cylinder Grand Am.
In lieu of the $4,000, buyers of those models may choose 0 percent financing for 60 months or 1.9 percent loans for 72 months. It is the first time GM has offered low-rate six-year loans. The incentives expire July 7.
The 72-month contracts, or $3,000, also are available on most other GM 2003 models. Exceptions are $2,000 on the Chevrolet Corvette, Pontiac Vibe and Saturn Vue and Ion.
The Chrysler group and Ford Division announced their early-summer offers. Ford's only change is a reduction of $500, to $2,500, in the Taurus rebate.
The Chrysler group kept the payback at $2,000 to $3,500 on most of its Chrysler and Dodge nameplates; 0 percent financing also remains. The group's top rebate continues at $4,500 on the Dodge Durango SUV. Expiration dates are July 9 for Ford Division and July 31 for the Chrysler group.
Toyota Division continues with a program of buyer incentives and dealer incentives. They vary by region, and there is no double dipping - regional management cannot get both customer and dealer payoffs. The end date is June 30.
Extending their incentive programs until June 30 are Audi, Hyundai, Isuzu, Porsche, Subaru and Volkswagen. Saab has extended its program until July 7.