Some Automakers Grant Payment Relief to Hurricane Victims | Edmunds

Some Automakers Grant Payment Relief to Hurricane Victims

Some automakers are granting payment relief and other assistance to people whose lives were disrupted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma. If you are among the car owners affected by the storms that devastated portions of the Southeast, read on for specific information by carmaker.

Also remember that what follows are just examples of special payment and loan plans available from automakers and financial services companies. If you don't see your car's brand, that doesn't mean you can't get help. Contact your finance company or a local dealership. Staying in touch with your financing company is always a good idea if your ability to pay is in jeopardy or your car is damaged.

Fiat Chrysler is offering a $500 discount on the purchase of a select new 2017 or 2018 model-year vehicles to residents of Texas and Louisiana. The discount can be combined with existing incentives, finance and lease deals. To take advantage of this offer, take a copy of your insurance claim showing the extent of damage to your vehicle as a result of Hurricane Harvey to a local dealership.

If you are a Ford customer with a vehicle affected by either hurricane, you can apply to have your payments deferred for up to two months by contacting Ford Credit or Lincoln Automotive Financial Services. If you need to replace a storm-damaged vehicle, Ford has put together a no-haggle, below-invoice bundle that mirrors the pricing offered to Ford employees and their families. In addition to special pricing, this offer includes low finance or lease rates, no payments until next year, and a simplified online application process.

GM Financial is helping out by arranging special deferred payments and by waiving certain associated fees. If you are replacing a car, there's an option to qualify for a 90-day deferral on the first payment. GM is also waiving all charges for owners of vehicles equipped with OnStar for the immediate future, which will give free access to emergency services and Wi-Fi to customers affected by Harvey and Irma.

If you financed or leased a vehicle with American Honda Finance and were affected by Hurricane Harvey, you can apply for a loan extension through the company's regional office in Dallas. Honda also notes that, for the moment, it is "significantly curtailing collection activities" in some affected areas to give victims extra time to recover.

Hyundai Motor Finance, Genesis Finance and Kia Motors Finance have announced special relief efforts for customers in areas hit by either storm. If you financed or leased through one of these companies, you may be eligible for programs that include payment extensions, redirected billing statements, and arranging phone or online payments free of charge.

If you financed or leased with Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp. or Infiniti Financial Services, you can apply for a payment extension. Nissan also notes that these companies will be attempting to reach consumers in both FEMA-designated disaster areas to make them aware of the payment-deferral program.

As Hurricane Irma struck Florida, many Tesla owners who were fleeing north to escape its path became worried about having enough battery power to reach the next charging station. In response, Tesla remotely extended the range of Model S and Model X vehicles with 60-kWh battery packs for free. The automatic upgrade took these models' battery capacity up to the formerly optional 75 kWh, for a possible 40 extra miles of travel.

If you are a customer of Toyota Financial Services or Lexus Financial Services affected by Hurricane Harvey, you may be eligible to take advantage of several payment relief options. These include loan extensions and deferred lease payments, redirected billing statements, and special arrangements for phone or online payments.

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