LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:
Here in the U.S., car sales picked up this year, and dealers are hoping for a final burst of sales tomorrow. As NPR's Sonari Glinton reports, New Year's Eve may be the best day of the year to buy a new car.
SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: If you watched any TV this holiday season, you've probably come across this commercial.
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UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Singing) It's the most wonderful sale of the year.
AARON BRAGMAN: That's typical around the end of the year, is to get those kinds of last-minute pushes for the last big sale of the year.
GLINTON: Aaron Bragman is an analyst with IHS Automotive.
BRAGMAN: Well, it's generally a good time for deals, because a lot of people are already in a buying mood. And so automakers will come out with that added extra incentive to try and get people to shop not only for maybe Christmas presents, but also for potentially a new car, as well.
GLINTON: Bragman says the end of the month is usually a good time to buy a car, because dealers have to pay taxes on their inventory, and they have to pay extra money to the car companies for those cars that stay on the lot.
BRAGMAN: The real reason is to try and get rid of inventory of the previous year. Nobody wants to try and buy a 2011 model year car in 2012. It's already considered last year's model.
GLINTON: Bragman says once the clock strikes 12:00, those new cars become last year's models - which is good for shoppers, not so good for dealers. Sonari Glinton, NPR News.
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