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Top Clunker Trade-Ins and Upgrades

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Top Clunker Trade-Ins and New Purchases

The Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act (CARS), aka The Cash for Clunkers program, is intended to help U.S. residents get a $3,500 or $4,500 credit toward purchasing a new, more fuel efficient vehicle when trading in a less fuel efficient vehicle. The hugely popular program quickly exhausted it's $1 billion appropriation in less than a week and the Obama administration quickly acted to add an additional $2 billion to keep the program afloat.Although there are several a "clunker" vehicle
Photo: AP

The Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save Act (CARS), or Cash for Clunkers program, allows US residents to get a $3,500 or $4,500 credit toward the purchase of a new, more fuel efficient vehicle when trading in their existing vehicle. 

The hugely popular program exhausted it's $1 billion appropriation in less than a week and the government acted quickly to provide an additional $2 billion to the program.

Although there are several qualifying factors for a "clunker," Edmunds.com Senior Consumer Advice Editor Philip Reed says “dealers are enjoying a 20 percent increase in gross profit per sale involving a clunker trade-in since the program launched.”

Click ahead to see the most popular trade-ins and new vehicles purchased under the CARS program, according to the Transportaton Dept.

(*Data on vehicles provided by Edmunds.com*)

By Oliver Quillia
Posted 8 August 2009

10. Ford Windstar FWD Van (Trade-In)

Introduced in the mid-1990s, the front-wheel-drive Ford Windstar minivan's reputation for reliability was notably poorer than other competing minivans, particularly those from Honda and Toyota.
Photo: AP

Introduced in the mid-1990s, the front-wheel-drive Ford Windstar minivan's reputation for reliability was notably poorer than some competitors, particularly those from Honda and Toyota.

9. Chevrolet C1500 Pickup 2WD (Trade-In)

Eligible vehicles for this model range from 1990-1999. See the list .

Eligible vehicles for this model range from 1990-1999. See the list here.

8. Ford F150 Pickup 4WD (Trade-In)

The first F-Series, called the F-1 (half ton), F-2 (three-quarter ton), or F-3 (Heavy Duty), were introduced as models. for the CARS program fall into the 1990-2002 make years.
Photo: AP

Eligible models for the CARS program fall into the 1990-2002 make years.

7. Chevrolet Blazer 4WD (Trade-In)

The Chevrolet Blazer was one of the most popular SUVs for five consecutive decades. Chevy continued to produce full-size, two-door Blazers through 1994, after which it rechristened these vehicles with the now-current Tahoe name.
Photo: AP

This was one of the most popular SUVs for decades. Chevy continued to produce full-size, two-door Blazers through 1994, after which it rechristened them to the now-current Tahoe name.

6. Ford Explorer 2WD (Trade-In)

Mostly utilitarian in nature and with more style than a station wagon or minivan, Ford's midsize creation was perfectly timed for the SUV boom that began in the early 1990s. And during much of the '90s, Ford was consistently selling more than 400,000 units a year.
Photo: AP

Mostly utilitarian in nature and with more style than a station wagon or minivan, Ford's midsize creation was perfectly timed for the SUV boom that began in the early 1990s. During much of that period, Ford sold more than 400,000 units a year.

5. Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan 2WD (Trade-In)

The Dodge Caravan invented the minivan. It was first to market with the sliding door and pioneered the integration of safety features like airbags. The Caravan, along with its relative, the Grand Caravan, was the top-selling minivan year after year in its time.
Photo: AP

Dodge's minivan was the first to market with the sliding door, while pioneering the integration of safety features like airbags. The Caravan, along with its relative, the Grand Caravan, was the top-selling minivan for many years.

4. Jeep Cherokee 4WD (Trade-In)

With nearly a 20-year production run, the Cherokee was discontinued when Jeep introduced the Liberty.
Photo: AP

With a near 20-year production run, the Cherokee was discontinued with the introduction of the Liberty.

3. Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD (Trade-In)

The Jeep Grand Cherokee was one of the pioneering SUVs that ushered in the modern midsize SUV segment in the early 1990s. When it debuted, the Grand Cherokee represented a bigger and better version of Jeep's smaller but still popular Cherokee.
Photo: AP

The Jeep Grand Cherokee was one of the pioneering SUVs that ushered in the modern midsize SUV segment in the early 1990s. When it debuted, the vehicle represented a bigger and better version of Jeep's smaller but still popular Cherokee.

2. Ford F150 Pickup 2WD (Trade-In)

The most popular vehicle in Ford's F series, the F-150  has been the most popular vehicle sold in the United States for nearly every year of the past three decades.
Photo: AP

The F-150 line has been the best selling truck in the country for more than two decades.

1. Ford Explorer 4WD (Trade-In)

Once a top seller in the late 1990's, Ford's Explorer series holds six of the top ten spots on the DOT's list of top vehicle trade-ins.1. 2. 3. 4. 7. 8.
Photo: AP

Once a top seller in the late 1990's, Ford's Explorer series holds six of the top ten spots on the DOT's list of top vehicle trade-ins.

1. 1998 Ford Explorer (14-17 mpg)
2. 1997 Ford Explorer (14-18 mpg)
3. 1996 Ford Explorer (14-18 mpg)
4. 1999 Ford Explorer (14-18 mpg)
7. 1995 Ford Explorer (15-18 mpg)
8. 1994 Ford Explorer (15-18 mpg)

10. Chevrolet Cobalt (New Purchase)

Now onto the top 10 vehicles purchased after trading in a "clunker" through the CARS program.The Chevrolet Cobalt is available as a coupe or sedan and comes in three trim levels: LS, LT and SS.The Cobalt LS Coupe has an EPA est. 37 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $14,990 (Based on current model)
Photo: Chevrolet

Now onto the top 10 vehicles purchased after trading in a "clunker" through the CARS program.

The Chevrolet Cobalt is available as a coupe or sedan and comes in three trim levels: LS, LT and SS.

The Cobalt LS Coupe has an EPA est. 37 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $14,990 (Based on current model)

9. Honda Fit (New Purchase)

Redesigned for the 2009 model year, the Honda Fit is available in two main trims levels: base and Sport. The Honda Fit (Base-Auto) has an EPA est. 31 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $14,750 (Based on current model)
Photo: AP

Redesigned for the 2009 model year, the Honda Fit is available in two main trims levels: base and Sport.

The Honda Fit (Base-Auto) has an EPA est. 31 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $14,750 (Based on current model)

8. Dodge Caliber (New Purchase)

The Caliber comes in three regular trims -- base SE, SXT and R/T -- along with a high-performance SRT4 variant. The Caliber SE has an EPA est. 27 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $16,460 (Based on current model)
Photo: Dodge

The Caliber comes in three regular trims -- base SE, SXT and R/T -- along with a high-performance SRT4 variant.

The Caliber SE has an EPA est. 27 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $16,460 (Based on current model)

7. Ford Escape FWD (New Purchase)

The Escape is available in one four-door body style with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. Three trim levels are offered: XLS, XLT and Limited. The Escape XLS has an EPA est. 27 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $20,515 (Based on current model)

The Escape is available in one four-door body style with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. Three trim levels are offered: XLS, XLT and Limited.

The Escape XLS has an EPA est. 27 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $20,515 (Based on current model)

6. Hyundai Elantra (New Purchase)

The Hyundai Elantra is a small sedan available in GLS and SE trim levels. The Elantra GLS has an EPA est. 28 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $14,120 (Based on current model)
Photo: Hyundai

The Hyundai Elantra is a small sedan available in GLS and SE trim levels.

The Elantra GLS has an EPA est. 28 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $14,120 (Based on current model)

5. Toyota Camry (New Purchase)

Four traditional Camry trim levels are offered: Base, LE, SE and XLE. A gas-electric hybrid Camry is also available and, along with 192 hp, it offers EPA estimates of 33 mpg city and 34 mpg highway.MSRP:From $19,395 (Based on current model)
Photo: Toyota

Four traditional Camry trim levels are offered: Base, LE, SE and XLE.

A gas-electric hybrid Camry is also available and, along with 192 hp, it offers EPA estimates of 33 mpg city and 34 mpg highway.

MSRP:
From $19,395 (Based on current model)

4. Toyota Prius (New Purchase)

The Toyota Prius was completely redesigned for 2010. The car's hybrid powertrain consists of a 1.8-liter gasoline engine that produces 98 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque.The Prius has an EPA est. 50 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $22,000 (Based on current model)
Photo: Oliver Quillia for CNBC.com

The Toyota Prius was completely redesigned for 2010. The car's hybrid powertrain consists of a 1.8-liter gasoline engine that produces 98 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque.

The Prius has an EPA est. 50 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $22,000 (Based on current model)

3. Honda Civic (New Purchase)

The current Civic is available as a coupe or sedan. The Hybrid comes exclusively with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and its EPA-estimated fuel economy is 40 mpg city and 45 mpg highway.MSRP:From $15,305 (Based on current model)
Photo: Honda

The current Civic is available as a coupe or sedan.

The Hybrid comes exclusively with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and its EPA-estimated fuel economy is 40 mpg city and 45 mpg highway.

MSRP:
From $15,305 (Based on current model)

2. Ford Focus FWD (New Purchase)

The Focus is currently available as a coupe and as a sedan. The four-door is available in S, SE, SES and SEL trim levels, while the coupe comes as the SE and SES.All models have an EPA est. 28 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $15,995 (Based on current model)
Photo: Ford

The Focus is currently available as a coupe and as a sedan. The four-door is available in S, SE, SES and SEL trim levels, while the coupe comes as the SE and SES.

All models have an EPA est. 28 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $15,995 (Based on current model)

1. Toyota Corolla (New Purchase)

Now in its tenth generation, the compact Toyota Corolla is not only the best-selling nameplate in automotive history, but it's the top-selling vehicle through the CARS program. The Toyota Corolla small sedan is available in five trim levels: base, LE, S, XLE and XRS.The Base model has an EPA est. 30 MPG hwy.MSRP:From $15,350 (Based on current model)
Photo: Toyota

Now in its tenth generation, the compact Toyota Corolla is not only the best-selling nameplate in automotive history, but it's the top-selling vehicle through the CARS program.

The Toyota Corolla small sedan is available in five trim levels: base, LE, S, XLE and XRS.

The Base model has an EPA est. 30 MPG hwy.

MSRP:
From $15,350 (Based on current model)