Cash for Clunkers Takes Bite Out of Auto Sales

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press
American automakers see sales fall in September.

FILE - In this combo made with file photos, logos for the Big Three automobile manufacturers, General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler, are shown. The Detroit Three have made big improvements to new vehicle quality over the last year, but still lag behind their foreign competitors, according to the marketing and consulting company J.D. Power and Associates. (AP File Photos)

GM, Chrysler and Ford say their September sales fell, revealing a tough hangover from this summer's Cash for Clunkers buying spree.

But Hyundai bucked the trend, reporting a 27-percent rise in sales last month over a year earlier.

Automakers got a big lift in July and August from clunkers, which spurred sales of nearly 700,000 new cars and trucks. The government program's big discounts lured in many customers who otherwise would have waited until later in the year to walk into dealerships.

General Motors Corp. says sales fell 45 percent from a year earlier. Chrysler Group LLC says sales slid 42 percent. Ford Motor Co. was down 5.1 percent, breaking a two-month streak of gains.


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