Autos

Costco Offers Incentives to Chevy, Audi EV Buyers

From now until the last day of April, members of Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST) can take advantage of special incentives on electric vehicles (EVs) from Chevrolet and Audi, as well as incentives on other Audi models. The incentives are being offered through the Costco Auto Program, which is open to all Costco members.

The incentives on a new 2020 or 2021 Chevy Bolt EV include a $3,000 price cut in addition to any available manufacturer incentives the buyer may be qualified for. For example, GM is offering an $8,500 customer cash incentive for buyers of a new Chevy Bolt who take retail delivery by March 31, 2021. The deal is not available with special financing or leasing offers, but those two incentives make a serious dent in the cost of a new 2021 Bolt that carries a starting price of $36,500.

The Chevrolet Bolt EV has 259 miles of range on a full charge. The car is also quick and fun to drive, with the ability to go from zero to 60 in 6.5 seconds.

The Costco-only incentive on an Audi e-tron EV is $2,000 in addition to any manufacturer incentives. Audi is also offering a $2,000 incentive to buyers of the 2021 Q7 and Q8 luxury crossovers (starting prices of $54,950 and $68,200, respectively), among several other models, and a $1,250 incentive on many other models.

The 2021 Audi A6, A7, and e-tron have received Top Safety Pick+ ratings awarded by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), and the 2021 Audi A4 and Audi Q8 have received an IIHS Top Safety Pick designation when equipped with available LED or Matrix-design LED headlights.

Over the past five years, more than 2.3 million Costco members have purchased a vehicle through the Costco Auto Program. Costco itself does not make any money on vehicle sales. Affinity Auto, which manages the program for Costco, negotiates a vehicle price with local dealers who are then obligated to offer buyers a set price and forbidden from offering additional options. Any dealer or manufacturer incentives are typically included. Participating dealers pay a fee to be included in the program.

Costco is scheduled to report quarterly earnings after markets close on Thursday. Analysts are expecting earnings per share of $2.45 on sales of $43.8 billion. For the 2021 fiscal year ending in August, Costco is expected to post earnings per share of $10.13 on sales of $184 billion. The estimates for both periods represent double-digit increases compared to last year’s totals.