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car review

Ah, the revolving door that is the world of Deals of the Week. If you want to get the best, richest deal on a new ride, it's important to stay on top of all the details in the ever-changing world of incentive offers and we go down that road here.

Take the 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. The L Platinum edition ($28,125 base price) is now on sale with a $1,500 Cash-for-Leases rebate that goes to the customer, and there's more. GM Canada and one of its financing partners, TD, have a finance rate of 0.0 per cent available until January 31.

Free money is always good. In addition, GM Canada's other financing partner, Ally, has rates starting at 5.48 per cent, but these deals come with a twist: The Ally Stackable Smart Purchase Finance Program comes with a "Buyer's Option." The latter allows for a window during which the owner can sell this Malibu back to Ally, though this offer is subject to a $199 fee and additional wear and tear charges, too. Buyers here also have the option of paying the outstanding loan balance in full.

The buyer, then, has a lot to absorb in this and so many other incentive arrangements – including deadlines on when a particular sales sweetener expires.

Deals of the Week is also interested in the latest offers on the cute little Fiat 500. The factory has a $2,500 rebate in play and it is set to expire on January 31, also. Fiat, along with its partner Chrysler, has been disappointed by the less-than-sparkling North American sales of the 500, which explains the discounting. This deal can be combined with financing as low as 4.99 per cent for 84 months.

Toyota Canada has up to $1,500 in cash rebates on some versions of its Tundra pickup, with offers set to expire Jan 31, as well. Finally, Honda has a $1,500 sales sweetener on the Ridgeline Sport pickup, also due to expire on January 31.

As usual, Deals of the Week obtained pricing information from, among other sources. Here are the numbers.

2012 Chevrolet Malibu LT Platinum Edition

  • MSRP: $28,125
  • Freight, dealer prep, air conditioning tax: $1,595
  • Dealer discount (estimated) : $1,250
  • Taxable subtotal: $28,470
  • Total price with 13% HST: $32,171.10
  • Factory discount: $1,500 (Cash for Leases factory-to-customer rebate)
  • Factory rebate: $500 (Student Bonus factory to customer)
  • Final price: $30,171.10
  • Note: Note: 0.0% finance rates for up to 72 months

2012 Fiat 500 Sport

  • MSRP: $18,500
  • Freight, air conditioning tax and dealer prep: $1,600
  • Dealer discount: $500
  • Factory discount: $2,500 (Consumer Cash Discount factory-to-dealer rebate)
  • Taxable subtotal: $17,100
  • Total price with 13% HST: $19,323
  • Note: 4.99% for up to 84 months

2012 Toyota Tundra SSR5 Double Cab 4.6L

  • MSRP: $32,170
  • Freight, dealer prep and air conditioning tax and Green Levy: $1,735
  • Dealer discount (estimated) : $1,500
  • Factory discount: $1,000 (Non-stackable Cash Discount factory-to-consumer rebate for cash purchases)
  • Taxable subtotal: $31,405
  • Total price with 13% HST: $35,487.65
  • Factory discount: $500 (Consumer Cash Discount factory-to-dealer rebate)
  • Final price: $34,987.65

2012 Honda Ridgeline Sport

  • MSRP: $37,690
  • Freight, dealer prep: $1,690
  • Dealer discount (estimated) : $1,500
  • Factory discount: $1,500 (Non-stackable Trading Dollars factory-to-dealer rebate)
  • Taxable subtotal: $36,380
  • Total price with 13% HST: $41,109.40

Pricing information source: Calculations based on Ontario customers. Please note that while the information above is accurate at the time of publication, incentives are given at the discretion of individual dealers, and may be changed or discontinued at any time. Dealer discounts are negotiated with the customer on a case-by-case basis.