Late summer car sales just weren't what they were supposed to be. New car sales in August were down a little over three percent from July -- historically, an unusual time to see a drop. Many automakers have new 2011 models on dealership lots already, and unsold 2010s to market alongside them.
We're not seeing the drastic discounts of last Fall. Automakers have simply planned better this year, and aren't facing the same massive overstock of unsold cars. But we are seeing discounts extended into October that, ordinarily, would have started to fade in late summer.
We've also seen a continued focus on interest-fee financing. These deals are lower-risk for the automaker, because they only have to offer them to buyers with top-tier credit. But if you can get them, they'll often save you more over the life of a loan than a cash-back rebate will up front.
Here are six of the best deals we've seen -- though we'd caution you that some deals are regional, and may not be offered everywhere.
2010 Ford EdgeEnlarge Photo
Ford Edge-- 0% APR financing forup to 60 months PLUS $1,000 cash back, or up to $4,000 cash back rebate
We run this feature every week, and honestly, writing about the Ford Edge week after week is getting a little old. But with this offer on the table, we just can't take it off the list yet. The Edge out-handles many of its competitors, offers a comfortable and stylish interior (as long as you don't need a third-row seat), and looks sharper than many look-alike, rounded, bubbly-styled crossovers from Japan. It also boasts Ford's outstanding SYNC infotainment system, available on even the lowest trim levels. A new 2011 is coming, yet Ford has enough 2010s left over that it's starting to worry -- and to cut prices. Take advantage while you still can. Buy these things up, so we can write about something else.