Many car dealerships offer military discounts as rebates once the car is purchased. Others offer them as discounts during the purchase or on the overall cost of a lease. Military discounts related to vehicles don’t stop with the actual purchase – there are also many option services available from dealers and service providers.
Some things to keep in mind as you pursue car discounts:
Some dealers require the vehicle to be financed through their finance services – check interest rates to see if the discount actually saves you money, or whether you can get better financing through a different lender.
Many military discount vehicles must be a specific model. Most only apply to new cars, so if it’s more cost-effective to buy used, skip the discount if none applies.
If you’re thinking of buying a car with a military discount, there may be requirements or other considerations that will come into play. Let’s take a look.
Requirements for Military Discounts on Cars
Car dealers offering military discounts have eligibility standards and requirements you’ll have to meet in order to take advantage of the savings. Some only offer deals to active-duty military, some include veterans. Some include family members, some don’t.
Some dealers will advertise their military discount, while you have to ask about it with others.
It’s a good idea to figure out what you’re looking for in a car and what your budget can support, then call car dealers and ask about military discounts.
Requirements vary, depending on the dealer, but be prepared for any or all of these from dealers that:
- Require official proof of service – Leave and Earnings Statement (LES), military ID, dependent military ID, Department of Defense Form 214
- Require proof of income and good credit
- Require registration with ID.me or another online ID tool
- Only offer deals to active-duty military
- Offer to deals to veterans who are disabled but not other veterans
- Only offer deals certain days of the year
Which Car Companies Offer Military Discounts?
If you’re in the market for a new car, it’s easy to find a dealer that will offer a military discount – many dealers across the country do.
Most of the bonuses come in the form of cash back after you buy the vehicle, though some are applied to the purchase or overall lease price.
The trick is to find the discount that works best for you and your situation.
Dealers that offer military discounts include:
- Acura – $750 rebate if you finance or lease through Acura
- BMW – $500-$11,000 toward purchase or lease
- Chevrolet – $500 off, participating dealers
- Chrysler – $500 bonus, Chrysler brand only
- Dodge – $500 bonus, Dodge brand only
- Ford/Lincoln – $500 bonus for eligible models
- GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet) – $500-$1,000 on eligible vehicles
- Honda – $500 bonus for some models
- Hyundai – $500 bonus for some models
- Jeep – $500 bonus for some models
- Kia – Bonus at participating dealers
- Mazda – $500 bonus for some models
- Nissan – $500-$1,000 bonus depending on model
- Subaru – $500 bonus on some models, from participating dealers
- Toyota – $500 off some models
- Volkswagen – $500 off some models
- Volvo – $500-$1,000 on eligible models
Best Military Discounts on Cars
Some dealers and car companies go above and beyond to make sure active-duty military, their families, veterans and retirees get a good deal on a car or truck. Offers may change, and some are for a limited time, so if one appeals to you, double-check with the dealer.
Some of the most popular and available deals for those looking to buy a car with a military discount are:
General Motors (GM)
GM’s military discount is a good one because of the range of vehicles available. It offers $500 off eligible GM, Chevrolet and Buick vehicles, and $1,000 off eligible Cadillacs for active-duty military, Reserves, National Guard, veterans, retirees, and sponsored spouses. Eligibility is verified with ID.me.
Eligible vehicles vary and not all dealers participate. To get a military discount, find an eligible vehicle online at gmmilitaryappreciation.com, get an authorization number and bring it to a participating dealer.
Volvo offers $500 a purchase or lease, with an additional $500 for those who buy or lease through the Affinity program in the U.S. Active-duty members, Reservists, National Guard members, and veterans are eligible, with ID.me used to verify eligibility. There’s no requirement to apply online; buyers can walk in and apply, which makes it more of a hassle-free option.
Ford offers a $500 bonus to active-duty military, delayed-enlistment program (DEP) members, veterans, retirees, spouses and surviving spouses, active National Guard and Reservists who are on orders to deploy or within 24 months of separation. Ford uses ID.me to verify eligibility, and those who want to buy can print it out and bring it to a dealer, or buy online.
Other Great Car Military Discounts
Some other military car discounts and offers that might work for you:
Acura offers $750 cost reduction or toward the down payment for select new or leased vehicles when it’s financed or leased through Acura Financial Services. The offer is for active-duty military, Ready Reserve and their spouses; veterans who are within two years of separation from active service and their spouses; military retirees, spouses of retirees within two years of separation, and Gold Star family members. Application is online.
Offers $500 for select models to active-duty service members, Reservists, retirees, honorably discharged veterans within 12 months of discharge, and 100% disabled veterans regardless of discharge date. To take advantage, begin by applying online. Once eligibility is verified, those who are eligible get an authorization number they bring to the dealer.
Honda’s $500 rebate for those who finance or lease through Honda Financial Services applies to active-duty military, Reserves, retirees, veterans within one year of separation and their spouses, and Gold Star family members are eligible. Active-duty must present LES, spouses must have spouse’s LES and dependent military ID, veterans must provide DD 214.
Hyundai’s $500 bonus is for active-duty military members, Reservists, National Guard members, veterans, retired military and spouses of those who are eligible. To get the bonus, provide proof of either active-duty, retired or veteran status.
Kia dealers offer discounts toward the purchase of a new vehicle, available to active-duty military, in the Guard or Reserves, military retirees, and U.S. military veterans, including those who have been honorably discharged or are on disability. The discount is also available to their immediate family members (spouse or child). Proof of service required.
Mazda’s $500 bonus is for eligible new vehicle purchase or lease. Active-duty military, Reserves, disabled veterans and retirees with 20 or more years and spouses or children who live at the same address are eligible. It can be combined with Mazda Financial Services Loyalty Rewards. LES, DEP or DD214 required.
Mitsubishi offers $500 on selected models to active-duty military (or spouse), active Reservists, retirees and veterans within 12 months of separation. Specifics on what documentation is required are provided on the Mitsubishi Military Rebate Program webpage.
Nissan offers $500 to $1,000 on selected vehicles to active-duty military, Reservists, retired with 20 or more years of service, and veterans within 24 months of separation. Visit a participating dealer and pick out an eligible vehicle, with the bonus applied upon payment. LES or military ID is required for active-duty members; DD 214 or certificate of release or discharge required for veterans and retirees.
Subaru provides a $500 discount for eligible vehicles for active-duty service members, Reservists, veterans and retired military within 12 months of separation. Subaru asks those seeking the discount to contact a participating Subaru retailer or VIP Program Headquarters at [email protected] or 1-800-VIP-0933.
Toyota offers $500 for active-duty military, family members who live at the same address, Gold Star families, retirees, and veterans within two years of discharge. Bring an LES, military ID, DD 214 or certificate of release or discharge to a dealer or apply online. The discount is available on all models, but the vehicle must be financed through Toyota Financial Services.
Volkswagen offers $500 toward the purchase or lease of eligible new models. Active-duty military, Reservists, National Guard members, retirees, veterans within 24 months of separation, are eligible. A local dealer can tell you more about how to qualify.
Military Discounts When Buying a Car Overseas
Those serving overseas can still find military car discounts from some dealers.
Military AutoSource helps active-duty military members find vehicles and get discounts while stationed overseas, either in-person or online.
BMW Military Sales is designed for U.S. military members stationed overseas and provides discounts, fixed prices, VAT-free purchasing and international warranty coverage.
Volkswagen Military Program offers discounts for military members buying a new car overseas.
Volvo Military Sales has special pricing for military members overseas.
Military Discounts on Car Parts and Accessories
Many car parts, tire stores and car service companies offer discounts or other benefits.
Companies that offer 5-10% off some service to military members and/or veterans are:
- Advance Auto Parts
- Goodyear Tire
- Jiffy Lube
- O’Reilly Auto Parts
- Pep Boys
Goodyear Auto Service also has free car checks for veterans.
Car Buying Services for Military Families
Military families are frequently on the move, sometimes with little notice. Some companies have set up car-buying services that help military members and their families buy a car at a pre-arranged price to avoid the time-consuming process of shopping around.
The Department of Defense provides resources for military members who are looking for car-buying help, including tips on buying, consumer reports and more, at DOD MWR Libraries, a free digital resource available to all members of the military. The DOD also has a free Car Buying Basics course for military members, through Military One Source.
The DOD also advises that military members who are car-shopping know their rights under the Military Lending Act, which sets limits on interest and fees. While it’s not applicable to auto loans that are secured by the vehicle, it is applicable to car-title loans and other services that may be related to buying or leasing a car.
About The Author
Maureen Milliken has been writing about finance, banking, investment, entrepreneurship, real estate and other related topics for more than 30 years. She started as the “Business Beat” columnist for the now-defunct Haverhill (Mass.) Gazette and currently is one of the hosts of the Mainebiz business-focused podcast, “The Day that Changed Everything” in addition to her daily writing. She also is is the author of three mystery novels and two nonfiction books.
- N.A. (2022, January 28) Tips for Buying a Car as a Service Member. Retrieved from https://www.militaryonesource.mil/military-life-cycle/new-to-the-military/getting-connected/buying-a-car-in-the-military/
- N.A. (ND) Military Lending Act. Retrieved from https://finred.usalearning.gov/assets/downloads/FINRED-MLA-FS.pdf