Why Chrysler's Post-Bankruptcy Incentives Could Be Your Pre-Bankruptcy Blues

Chrysler has shown a lot of improvement since it exited Chapter 11 bankruptcy, but a weak sales showing in June hasn’t just spooked Chrysler, it has spooked the entire automotive industry.  That’s why Chrysler is offer incentives that are so rare it will probably attract even those who know that buying a brand new car could land them in bankruptcy, sooner rather than later.

Chrysler will pay up to $500 per month for a total of $1,000 on most vehicles. Customers also get the option of taking $3,000 to $4,000 in cash or making a “regret-free” purchase, in which they could return any new vehicle within 60 days if they’re not satisfied. Other July incentives include zero-percent financing on most Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Jeep vehicles. All the deals are set to end Aug. 2.

Here’s the rub…if you need Chrysler to pay your first two months car note, then you probably shouldn’t be buying a car in the first place.  It is deals like the one being offered by Chrysler that can be so tempting to those already facing financial trouble simply because they would not be able to afford a new vehicle without the deal.  Many of the people who will sign up for this deal are only one or two financial disasters away from a bankruptcy hearing and any little hiccup in their life could send them over the edge.

If you are considering signing up for the Chrysler deal or any of the auto industry deals, ask yourself first, “Would I be able to afford this car otherwise?”  “Will purchasing this car put me closer to bankruptcy?”  “Am I already considering bankruptcy?”  If the answer to any of the above questions is yes, then it is probably best that you avoid “taking advantage” of these so-called deals.