The verdict is in: adding more electric and hybrid vehicles to the roads helps reduce emissions, reduce dependence on gasoline, and help people get from point A to point B while making only a small environmental footprint.
However, not everyone who wants a hybrid car has access to the car of their dreams. The newest vehicles, such as the 2013 Tesla Model S and the 2013 Nissan Leaf, offer the latest in green benefits but also come with a high price tag. The Tesla Model S, for example, comes with a MSRP of $69,900 — and that’s before adding on any additional features. It’s out of the price range for most consumers, even for people who want to do their part towards integrating green energy into their daily lives.
This is a huge hurdle for many people who want to help the environment but don’t have the funding or the credit necessary to drive eco-friendly cars. It’s made even worse by the fact that many inexpensive used cars, the junkers you see getting passed around on Craigslist or other used markets, were made before the 2009 CARB emissions standards became law in 16 states — or even before the first round of federal emissions standards went into place in 1994.
However, there are ways for people to get access to these otherwise expensive hybrid and electric vehicles. Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc. provides indirect financing to auto dealerships, helping people with limited credit or low incomes gain access to hybrid and electric cars that might otherwise be out of their price range.
Why is this important? Because auto emissions cause 75% of carbon monoxide pollution in the United States. Because if hybrid, electric, and other eco-friendly cars are ever going to become the norm, not the exception, they have to be adopted by a critical mass of the United States population. Because low income or poor credit should not be a barrier to contributing to the green energy movement.
Many Americans have to take out car loans regardless of the type of car they purchase, and Consumer Portfolio Services’ automobile financing services help people in the Southern California region who might not otherwise be able to get a car loan. They help people get to work, fulfill their responsibilities and commitments, and give people the opportunity to contribute to the environment by driving a hybrid or electric car.
Are there any downsides to obtaining an auto loan? As with all loans or financing programs, users are required to make regular payments throughout the life of the loan, or risk losing their car. People who are already struggling with their finances may find these regular payments difficult, especially in the context of an already-tight budget. However, hybrid and electric cars also come with significant financial benefits, including saving money on expensive gas. Like any other type of loan, consumers must make sure they can afford the payments before signing on and driving away in their new car.
In a Consumer Portfolio Services profile for the LA Times, Ken Bensinger noted that services like Consumer Portfolio Services kept people from finding themselves in a position where they were “forced to pay cash for older, low-quality cars,” and that the company specifically worked to place people in low-mileage vehicles. He also noted that, despite competition from other auto loan companies, Consumer Portfolio Services’ stock (CPSS) was rising.
Is one single auto loan company enough to turn the tide and put more low-mileage, hybrid, electric, and other eco-friendly cars on the road? Probably not — but it’s enough to get the ball rolling. Consumer Portfolio Services is quickly becoming one of many options available for people looking to fund auto purchases, and CPSS stock performance indicates it will be sticking around for a while.
It’s always best to pay cash for major purchases like cars, and trying to avoid large amounts of consumer debt is still a huge issue that affects many Americans. However, for people wanting to do their part to reduce emissions and find a hybrid car that fits their budget, Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc. is one way to help finance that goal.
Hybrid and electric cars should not be privileges that are reserved only for the very rich; they should be environmental alternatives that are available to everybody. Until there are low-cost, eco-friendly cars in every price range, consumers will need to turn to auto loans and financing to drive these types of vehicles, and Consumer Portfolio Services is offering yet one more opportunity among many for drivers to contribute to the green energy project by driving a Prius, a Leaf, or another eco-friendly car.