Last Hurrah for Cash For Clunkers

By Ashanti Blaize
|  Saturday, Aug 22, 2009  |  Updated 10:00 PM CDT
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Last Hurrah for Cash For Clunkers

AP

This program had it all: free money, and car-smashing drama.

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The wildly popular "Cash for Clunkers" program is running on fumes this weekend.  The program ends Monday, but dealers continue to cash in, already selling nearly half a million cars under the government's rebate program. As of Friday, the total valued of the rebates stood at $2 billion.

Car dealerships in North Texas were packed all day Saturday with car shoppers looking to make one last try at getting some cash for their clunker.

"We're extremely busy today," said Reuben Mosely, Don Herring Mitsubishi sales manager.

The "Cash for Clunkers" program is ending two weeks early after the government realized the $3 billion budget wouldn't last through Labor Day, leaving consumers only a few more days to try and get $3,500 or even $4,500 for their gas-guzzling, late model vehicle.

"I have an old car that's 20 years old that I want to get rid of," said Turner.  "And I'm sure I'm gonna get what I want."

For Don Herring Mitsubishi in Dallas, as well as other dealerships across the country, Cash for Clunkers has been the boost they needed during a down economy.

"Too bad it's ending," said Mosely.  "We got a lot more people in that probably weren't in the market to really buy a car, but found a way to actually get rid of a car they really didn't want anymore."

By the end of last week more than 145,000 clunker transactions were submitted by car dealers nationwide.  Even though this popular program is coming to an end, some dealerships are finding ways to keep the consumers coming and the car sales going.

"Your trade is still worth $4,500 to us," said Mosely.

Cash for Clunkers officially ends Monday night at 7 p.m.

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