In other words, the customers can return their cars for up to a year after purchase if they lose their ability to continue paying, but the program only covers up to $7,500 in a buyers' negative equity. Consumers must have made at least two scheduled payments on their loan or lease, be current on all payments and pay for any outstanding balance above the $7,500 benefit amount which results from negative equity. The actual circumstances which are covered are as follows:
- Involuntary unemployment
- Physical disability
- Loss of driver's license due to medical impairment
- International employment transfer
- Self-employed personal bankruptcy
- Accidental death
The last one does seem a bit dark-humored if you coincidentally have a relative who's a new Hyundai driver and you were planning to kill him/her for the car. Since only “accidental deaths” are covered, no luck for you.
Although Hyundai is bragging that they are the first automaker in the US auto industry to offer such a program, apparently Volkswagen of America did the same thing in the early 1990s. The Koreans were unclear as to the amount of time the program will last, but considering the recent economy downturn, the phase might take a while to support the sluggish sales. Taking into acount they are also the only ones offering a 10-year or 100,000 mile warranty, Hyundai might have a pretty decent 2009 year.