I had posited in the past that, apart from the odd design and old vehicle destruction, that yes, it was a good thing in terms of generating additional sales. I argued that it didn’t go on long enough. Germany has had one in force for months, and it seems to have done a great deal of good, though there was no requirement for destruction of the turned in car, it could be scrapped, or broken down for parts, or …
Ok. According to the last linked article above
The program was credited with strongly boosting sales and, in April, the government decided to expand the program’s funding to ???5 billion from ???1.5 billion. The measure received some of the credit for Germany emerging from recession, with modest 0.3% growth in the second quarter.
Of course, there will be a payback time in terms of the demand that was accelerated in the market which no longer exists, so this will likely oscillate around an equilibrium value for a while.