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Cars.com Reminds Consumers About 2009 Tax Incentives on New Car Purchases

If you missed the boat on the Cash for Clunkers program, Cars.com reminds consumers that they can still deduct local sales tax on new-car purchases made before the end of the year.

The deduction is limited to the state and local sales and excise taxes paid on a new-car purchase of $49,500 or less and is phased out for taxpayers whose modified adjusted gross income is between $125,000 and $135,000 for individual filers and between $250,000 and $260,000 for joint filers.

"The tax deduction was launched prior to the Cash for Clunkers deal; However, for many consumers, the news of the tax incentive was lost among the Cash for Clunkers hysteria," said Cars.com Editor in Chief Patrick Olsen. "With just 6 weeks on the tax incentive program, we want to remind consumers who were not aware of the credit that now may be a good time to buy, especially when you combine the credits with all of the year-end sales offers from manufacturers"

Olsen notes that shoppers in the market for hybrid vehicles can also take advantage of special incentives from the government if they act fast. In addition to the sales tax deduction, time is running out for consumers to take advantage of remaining tax credits offered on certain hybrid-car purchases. Once a manufacturer sells 60,000 hybrid-vehicles, government tax credits begin to phase out and the credit begins to decrease. Once the 60,000 sales threshold is met, the credit drops by 50 percent of its full amount for 6 months, then 25 percent for 6 months and then it is gone completely. Credits for Toyota and Honda are already gone, but some incentives still remain on certain Ford, GM and Nissan hybrids.

Ford sold its 60,000th hybrid vehicle in the 4th quarter of 2008, so the credits have started to phase out. Buyers have until March 31, 2010 to receive any credit for the purchase of a Ford hybrid.

"If you combine the sales deductions and tax credits for the remaining hybrid cars that qualify, there are some great government incentives that can help get you into a new car this year," added Olsen.

For more information about the tax incentives, visit Cars.com's blog -- KickingTires.

About Cars.com

Cars.com is the leading destination for online car shoppers, offering credible, easy-to-understand information from consumers and experts to help buyers formulate opinions on what to buy, where to buy and how much to pay for a car. With comprehensive pricing information, side-by-side comparison tools, photo galleries, videos, unbiased editorial content and a large selection of new- and used-car inventory, Cars.com puts millions of car buyers in control of their shopping process with the information they need to make confident buying decisions.

Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).

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