- A Missouri dealership cheerfully refunded $300,000 to car buyers after losing a Super Bowl bet and vows to repeat the promotion next year.
- The dealership said it would refund money if the opening kickoff of either the first or second half of the game was returned for a touchdown.
- "It did bring people into the showroom, but after all of the calls and the national exposure we got from this exciting outcome, we know we'll get more participation next year," Kathleen Frazier, the marketing manager for Hutcheson Ford told Edmunds.
ST. JAMES, Missouri — A dozen customers at Hutcheson Ford scored a big win when the dealership stood by its Super Bowl sales promotion that promised a full refund on any vehicle purchase, new or used, made in the days preceding Super Bowl XLVIII, but only if the opening kickoff of either half was returned for a touchdown.
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Percy Harvin's 87-yard kickoff return in the second half cost Hutcheson Ford $300,000 in vehicle buybacks, including Jim and Mary Jane Carey's 2013 Ford F-150 priced about $53,000.
"It's such a blessing," said Mary Jane Carey of St. James, in a statement.
She and her husband purchased the truck to drive across the country and spend time with each other, as Jim was diagnosed with leukemia in the past year.
Another deserving winner's home recently burned down, Kathleen Frazier, Hutcheson Ford's marketing manager, told Edmunds.
The promotion also featured a raffle with the same touchdown-return condition. Those who came for a test drive and entered "Super Giveaway" would win either a new vehicle or $25,000 equivalent cash. Winner Dottye Wolf of Rolla, Missouri, elected the cash.
In all, Hutcheson Ford refunded purchases between $8,000 and $55,000. Nine of the 12 winners purchased pickups, both new and used. The contest was insured.
The odds of the touchdown return were pegged at 2.5 percent.
"We wanted to come up with an annual promotion and decided to tie it with the Super Bowl but this was about only a week before the game," Frazier said. "It did bring people into the showroom, but after all of the calls and the national exposure we got from this exciting outcome, we know we'll get more participation next year."
Winners were invited to a dealership party to receive their checks, along with a bottle of Sparkling Moscato donated by nearby St. James Winery.
The promotion had a far-reaching impact.
"The winners were from all over Missouri," Frazier said. "We had no idea this would work out this well."
Edmunds says: A dealership comes out on the losing end of a Super Bowl bet, but ends up as a winner in the eyes of car shoppers. Expect copycat promotions next year.