Brian Benstock is so pumped up about the federal government's cash-for-guzzlers program that he ordered 80 extra Honda Civics and 40 extra Accords last week for customers he thinks will trade in junkers.
"This is a wonderful program that will drive people in the market and into the showroom," says Benstock, general manager of Paragon Honda in New York City.
For people who don't qualify for the federal money, Paragon started its own cash-for-clunkers marketing initiative last week. Paragon pays $500 to $4,500 to people who trade in vehicles for a more fuel-efficient new or used one.
Benstock is among the many franchised dealers eagerly anticipating the start of the Car Allowance Rebate System initiative, the widely publicized but still confusing incentives also known as cash for guzzlers or cash for clunkers.
AutoNation Inc., the nation's largest dealership group, is preparing an advertising campaign for its 232 dealerships to promote the program, spokesman Marc Cannon says. "We're waiting for the program to be ironed out and kicked off, but we're clearly on board," he says. AutoNation sold 255,843 new units in 2008.