We reported yesterday that Chrysler was offering buyers of their new cars a locked-in gas price of $2.99 a gallon for three years, guaranteed. Another automaker getting involved in the gas incentive battle is Suzuki, who is offering its buyers free gas for the summer.
Keep in mind, Suzuki started their promotion on May 1, while Chrysler started theirs today, May 7. Suzuki’s offer is definitely different from Chrysler’s though. To get a pre-paid card from Suzuki to use for your gas, you must also qualify for zero percent financing. So unless you have superb credit, you aren’t going to get free gas from Suzuki.
According to Suzuki’s Web site, it states that "Getting your free gas is easy! Buy a new Suzuki, qualify for 0% financing, and get up to $470 worth of gas for your summer travels".
Once I clicked on the "click here for details", this is what it says:
FREE GAS PROVIDED IN FORM OF A VISA® PREPAID CARD. AMOUNT VARIES BY MODEL AND IS BASED UPON A 3-MONTH ESTIMATE. SEE DEALER FOR DETAILS. SUMMER GAS CARD PROMOTION BASED ON EPA, ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION AND GAS PRICE STATISTICS.
0% APR Financing is for 60 months. Monthly payment of $16.67 per every $1000 financed. Subject to credit approval from American Suzuki Financial Services (ASFS). This offer is available in lieu of customer cash incentives. "Free gas" provided in form of a Visa Prepaid Card and only available in conjunction with 0% financing as offered by ASFS. Offer ends 6/30/08. The Visa Prepaid Card may be used anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. This Card is issued by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc.
So basically, it’s just a pre-paid gift card that you don’t necessarily have to use for gas. You could use it for groceries or anything else you fancy. And, unlike Chrysler’s incentive, Suzuki’s gas card isn’t going to last you three years.
So which gas card is a better deal? I guess it depends on your credit score, because credit approval is the main deal-breaker in Suzuki’s gas incentive program.