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In Sandy's wake, automakers offer Red Cross donations, sales incentives

Companies have sent at least $4.25 million and 70 new vehicles in donations; 3 automakers gave $1 million each.

By Exhaust Notes Nov 5, 2012 2:21PM
(c) American Red CrossAt least 10 automakers have pledged to help victims of Sandy with rescue vehicles and at least $4.25 million in donations, all within a week after the storm pelted the Connecticut, New York and New Jersey coastlines.

After the storm cleared during the early morning of Oct. 30, General Motors donated 50 pickups and vans to the American Red Cross after donating $250,000 to the organization earlier in the year. A day later, Toyota and Mercedes-Benz followed suit with $1 million donations to the Red Cross; some of Toyota's amount went to other nonprofits. Automakers had donated millions in cash and vehicles for Gulf Coast victims after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001.

Many of the pledging automakers, including BMW, Toyota and Mercedes-Benz, have North American headquarters in the New Jersey suburbs close to Manhattan that were directly affected by Sandy. Many others have smaller regional offices in Manhattan.

Here's the rest of the donating automakers, in no particular order:

  • BMW: $1 million to the Red Cross.
  • Mercedes-Benz: $1 million to the Red Cross.
  • Ford: $50,000 to the Red Cross by Ford employees.
  • Chrysler: 20 Ram trucks and $100,000 to the Red Cross.
  • Mazda: $100,000 to the Red Cross.
  • Volkswagen: $500,000 to the Red Cross.
  • Honda: $500,000 to the Red Cross.
  • Fisker: Opened 40-acre parking lot at Wilmington, Del., plant to store surge of electric utility trucks and repair crews.

Volvo and Nissan have instead enacted special new-car pricing for potential buyers who lost vehicles due to storm damage. Volvo is offering employee pricing on all new models plus $1,000 cash for insurance deductibles and other "damage-related costs." Nissan is also offering employee pricing and finance deals on new Nissan and Infiniti models, except the GT-R (obviously) and (oddly) the Versa S sedan. In addition, Ford is offering $500 bonus cash on new Ford and Lincoln models plus the option to defer up to two payments.

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