Are current incentives not enough to move you into a new Caliber or Sebring? Chrysler Corp. hopes their newest promotion - fuel at $2.99 a gallon for three years - may catch your fancy.
Starting today and running through June 2, the "Let's Refuel America" campaign offers an option to Chrysler's current incentives. Customers who purchase or lease a new Chrysler, Dodge, or Jeep are given a fuel card. Tied to the customer's credit card, using the fuel card at the pump charges the driver $2.99 per gallon, while Chrysler picks up the difference.
That difference may prove substantial. The Department of Energy reports the national average cost for a gallon of gas at $3.61, but rising as high as $3.90 in cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles. At the current average, Chrysler's paying for close to 17 percent of a driver's fuel cost.
The bill may be even bigger when customers purchase a diesel vehicle. Both the Ram 2500 and 3500 - including Cummins-powered variants - and the Grand Cherokee CDI are eligible for the program. Better yet, customers still pay only $2.99 for a gallon of diesel. Considering the national average of diesel fuel runs at approximately $4.19, Chrysler's effectively footing 29 percent of the tab.
As liberating as that sounds, there (naturally) are a few restrictions. Chrysler is rationing how much gas they'll purchase, setting an annual fuel allotment based upon 12,000 miles of driving at a vehicle's EPA mileage. If you buy a car that runs on gasoline or E85, your card can't buy diesel - and vice versa. Similarly, gas cards are limited to 87 octane - trying to pump mid- or high-grade fuel will incur extra costs.
And if you're thinking about using this on the revived Challenger or a Viper, think again. Both models - along with the Ram Chassis Cab, Wrangler, the Germanic Crossfire and Sprinter, or any SRT model - are ineligible for the program.