Gadgets Get Subprime Car Buyers to Pay

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We’ve heard of engine shutoff devices for delinquent car owners, but it seems the industry behind the technology is booming. With subprime loans increasing, car dealers are leaning on devices that force owners to pay their monthly bill or face a car that won’t run as it sits in the driveway waiting for the repo man.

One company that manufactures these devices says it has grown 30% in the past few years. Some of the devices require the owner to punch in a code, which is provided after they pay each bill so the car starts for the next 30 days. Others work wirelessly and can be activated online.

Whichever device is used, dealers are happy. They get to sell cars to more people whose credit might have kept them from ownership, and the devices keep repossession rates down. 

High-tech gear disables car if borrower misses payment (USA Today)  

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Former managing editor David Thomas has a thing for wagons and owns a 2010 Subaru Outback and a 2005 Volkswagen Passat wagon. Email David Thomas

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