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GM extends money-back guarantee program

September 28, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
General Motors says if you don't love your new GM vehicle, they'll take it back. But this guarantee isn't exactly like returning the tie or the pair of jeans you bought at the department store that you didn't like. A money-back guarantee on any General Motors vehicle, it's in the commercial so it must be true, and it is.

"I think in light of the economy it is a smart way to get people to get people on the lot," said consumer Harper McDonald.

But before you sign on the dotted line as with any contract you should read the fine print.

For example, don't try to bring the car back before 30 days have passed or after 60 days. Returns are possible between 31 and 60 days of ownership only.

Also, no car can be returned if it's been in an accident. Small scratches or door dings are OK if under $200 to repair.

Make sure you don't drive too much either. The odometer cannot have more than 4000 miles on it.

If you do bring it back you may have problem getting your trade-in back.

"They would get their money back if it was a full-on trade in or if they owned it outright," said Thorson Motors president Tom George. "But if there was a payoff on it then they are out their trade."

Also, GM won't refund the title, registration and other fees. And if you purchased any accessories through the dealership like fancy wheels, stripes, or other add-ons, there will be no refund for those either.

Now there is one other choice that some dealers may not mention to you. If you turn down the guarantee you can get a $500 rebate towards the purchase of a new vehicle instead, which might be a better deal for you.

"At this point everybody is taking the $500 rebate that is in lieu of the 60 day guarantee," said George.

"I would go with the $500 rebate," said McDonald.

A couple of other things to remember, only one return is allowed per household. Leased vehicles do not qualify. The program ends on November 30.

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