During and after the 2008-09 recession, Congress enacted dramatically higher limits to the Section 179 depreciation tax deduction of business assets.
Section 179 was once known as the Hummer tax loophole because at one time it allowed small businesses to buy or lease the big SUV cheaper than lighter passenger vehicles, which were not heavy enough to qualify for maximum depreciation.
The deduction applies to any large piece of business equipment bought or in some cases leased and put into service during the 2013 tax year, including many vehicles. In addition to the Section 179 bump, Congress also enacted a second depreciation boost -- a 50 percent bonus depreciation -- that is also scheduled to expire Dec. 31.
The 2013 limit for Section 179 deductions for a business's assets is a cumulative $500,000 this year per taxpayer. But barring congressional intervention, the 2014 limit will reset to $25,000.
Congress could agree again to amend the yearly limit, as it has in the past, but so far has taken no action to do so.
Per-vehicle deductions depend on the size and type of vehicle, but range from about $11,000 to $25,000, depending on price and weight.