DETROIT - Chevy is so certain you'll love its new products it's offering something unique to the auto industry: a money-back guarantee.
It's called Chevy: Love It or Return It, Total Confidence Pricing.
Here's the offer: If you purchase 2012 or 2013 Chevy product at a participating Chevrolet dealership, you can return it within 60 days or 4,000 miles and get a full refund of your money (minus taxes, etc.)
The offer is good from July 10, 2012, through September 4, 2012. And if your mind is as devious as mine, you may be wondering, "What if I can purchase a Corvette, return it, and buy another one?"
The answer is no.
There are a number of terms and restrictions (http://www.chevrolet.com/confidence/conditions/) preventing abuse of GM's "confidence" in the Chevy brand.
This is a thinly veiled incentive program, offering additional piece of mind, value and yet does not fuss with the price per se.
GM executives have grappled with ways to boost GM's market share without re-entering the very expensive and potentially destructive cash rebate game.
Their addiction to incentives created a "wait and see" consumer who was always anticipating a better deal down the road, while eroding the residual value of its products.
This is the un-incentive - a way to give the consumer something attractive with out high costs now or later.
"Chevy Confidence is clearly an effort by GM to clear out 2012 inventory, close the model year on a high note and kick-start the 2013 model year for its highest-volume brand, yet do it in a way that doesn't scream 'fire sale' but rather stresses value," says Edmunds.com analyst Michelle Krebs.
I'm reminded of the Hyundai plan to take over payments of a new vehicle if you lose your job.
This is basically an insurance contract between buyer and seller.
It may be a nice deal-closer with buyers who are sitting on the fence while considering other brands.
But like the Hyundai offer, I think the real value is the promotional peg and high confidence statement it sends.
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