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Ford Credit to provide payment relief during crisis

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Ford Motor Credit Co. on Monday said it will allow customers impacted by the coronavirus crisis to delay payments on new-vehicle purchases or leases.

The lender also is offering customers who buy a new vehicle the option to delay their first payment for 90 days. Ford Credit will begin running ads today for the program, using the slogans “Built for Right Now” and “Built to Lend a Hand.”

Ford has set up a special hotline for customers to discuss options: 1-800-723-4016. It’s also encouraging customers to access their accounts online or through the FordPass app.

“Ford is committed to lending a hand to the people who rely on us,” Mark LaNeve, Ford’s vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service, said in a statement. “The peace of mind of our Ford and Lincoln customers is our top priority as we work through the developments of this outbreak.”

In addition to the payment relief for customers, Ford said Monday that the Ford Fund, its philanthropic arm, will donate more than $500,000 to nonprofit groups in southeast Michigan and will support delivery of food to senior citizens and to thousands of children who do not have access to school meals while classes are not in session. Some locations in Detroit are serving as drive-up food pantry distribution centers.

Ford also is launching an emergency aid program with the United Negro College Fund to help students with financial difficulties at historically black colleges and universities get home following the sudden closure of some of these institutions.

“We are immediately targeting resources to ensure that the most vulnerable people are being cared for during this unprecedented situation,” Mary Culler, president of the Ford Motor Company Fund, said in a statement. “We appreciate all that our nonprofit partners are doing and will continue to work with them to address critical needs in our communities as the situation evolves.”

On Friday, Hyundai said it was relaunching its Assurance job loss protection program for new vehicles, offering to make up to six months of payments for customers who buy or lease over the next seven weeks through its captive financing arm. Genesis is offering a similar program.

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