In an effort to boost sales of its newest model and increase traffic at its dealerships, Hyundai Motor America said Wednesday that it has doubled the factory rebate on 1992 Elantras to $1,000.
The new rebate is effective through April 2.
Tom Ryan, Hyundai Motor America vice president, said the company hiked the rebate because it "is doing everything possible to stimulate the economy, giving it the push it so badly needs."
But the importer and distributor of the Korean-built cars is also hoping to stimulate its own sales, which have dropped each year since hitting a high of 264,000 in 1988. Last year, Hyundai sold 117,630 cars in the United States.
The Elantra, introduced last October as Hyundai's mid-range subcompact, has been selling at an average of 1,250 units a month with a suggested retail price, before rebates, of $8,995 to $10,649.
Currently, Hyundai is offering $1,500 rebates on 1991 Excels, Sonatas and Scoupes in California.
On 1992 models, Hyundai is offering $500 on Excels; $750 on Sonatas, its top-of-the-line model; $500 on Scoupes and $1,000 on Elantras.
Hyundai considers the Elantra its turnaround model and introduced it with a two-year or 24,000-mile routine maintenance warranty that it has since extended to all other Hyundai models sold in the United States. The maintenance warranty, offered to augment other factory warranties, is part of Hyundai's campaign to improve its car's reputation for reliability.