Where to find the best auto loan rates of 2021

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Need to finance a new car or a new used car, but you don’t know where to get the best auto credit rates? You can find low rate auto loans from many banks, credit unions, online lenders, and dealerships.

With so many financial institutions to choose from, finding the one that offers the lowest interest rates for auto loans takes time. But shopping around can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your car loan and lower your monthly payments, so it’s worth it.

8 lenders with the best auto loan rates

Not all lenders are suitable for all buyers, which is why we have listed the best auto finance from banks, credit unions, and online lenders. While you can sometimes find annual percentage rates (or APRs) below 2%, most will be just north of that, going up to 4% depending on the financial institution. Keep in mind that you must have a credit score of 800 or higher to get the best auto loan rates. In addition, some of the listed providers provide loans directly to consumers, while others link clients with loans.

Best auto loan rates Lowest APR Loan amounts term of the loan
PenFed Credit Union 2.14% $ 500 to $ 100,000 Up to 84 months
Automatically approve 2.25% Varies depending on the lender 12-84 months
Auto Express Credit Varies depending on the lender Varies depending on the lender Varies depending on the lender
Genius Tariff 2.39% $ 12,000 to $ 100,000 36 to 72 months
myAutoLoan 2.49% $ 5,000 minimum 24-72 months
Lightstream 2.49% $ 5,000 to $ 100,000 24-144 months
Wells fargo 3.90% $ 2,500 minimum Up to 72 months
CapitalOne 3.99% $ 4,000 to $ 50,000 36-72 months

PenFed Credit Union

The second largest federal credit union in the United States, PenFed Credit Union, was founded in 1935 to serve military personnel, government employees, and their families, but is now open to anyone. It has received an A + rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) ​​and our review team gives it a rating of 8.5 out of 10.0. While not our top rated company, it has some of the lowest APRs in the industry, which in turn results in lower monthly payments. PenFed loans range from $ 500 to $ 100,000 for a maximum term of 84 months, but you must have a minimum credit score of 610 to get them.

Automatically approve

Among the lenders we surveyed, Auto Approve obtained our highest rating, at 9.4 out of 10.0. The company’s minimum income requirement of $ 18,000 puts its auto loans within the reach of many consumers. Auto Approve is accredited by the BBB, where it has achieved an A + rating and a 5.0-star Perfect Customer Score based on over 500 customer reviews. The company only offers refinance loans, but given the money you can save by refinancing at a lower auto loan rate, it’s worth considering.

Auto Express Credit

For those with bad credit, the best lender to consider is Auto Credit Express, which specializes in this type of loan offer. While the business has received a few bad customer reviews, overall it’s a good place to start if you have little to no credit or have gone bankrupt. In addition, the company offers special rates for those serving in the military. We give Auto Credit Express an overall rating of 8.5 out of 10.0.

Genius Tariff

With competitive interest rates and a minimum credit requirement of 550, RateGenius is one of your best loan options if you need to refinance your existing car loan. RateGenius will refinance from $ 12,000 to $ 100,000 for 37 to 72 months. We rate the lender 8.5 out of 10.0 and give them a particularly good rating for the borrower experience as they have thousands of positive reviews online and customers seem to be very satisfied with their service in the lender. ‘together.


What is a good auto loan rate?

Many times the best auto loan rates you can get are higher than the lowest APR advertised by a lender. To make sure you get a competitive rate for auto financing, it helps to know the average rates for your type of loan. Here are the average loan rates offered by lenders in credit unions and banks, according to the National Credit Union Administration:

Type of loan term of the loan National People’s Fund
Average rate
National Bank
Average rate
Used car loan 48 months 3.16% 5.16%
Used car loan 36 months 3.04% 5.10%
New car loan 60 months 3.09% 4.81%
New car loan 48 months 2.98% 4.70%

How are loan rates determined?

Loan rates are determined by a variety of factors including the type of loan, personal details, and your credit score.

It starts with the type of loan you are looking for. The most common types of loans sought by borrowing are purchase loans, where you use the money to buy a new or used car, or refinance loans, which are used to pay off an existing loan with a high APR. These are best for those whose credit scores have recently changed or if you have had a change in income. You can also get a lease buyout loan, which finances the purchase of your leased vehicle.

Additionally, lenders consider your income, existing debts, loan amount, and loan term. The longer the loan, the higher the interest rate.

Last but not least, your credit score will play a major role in the amount you pay. The best auto loan rates are available for those who have excellent credit. FICO® defines an “excellent” score as being between 800 and 850, and 21% of Americans fall within that range, according to Experian. Sixteen percent of Americans have “very bad” credit scores, which are less than 579.


Tips for Getting the Best Auto Loan Rates

In order to get the lowest rates from a financial institution, you will want to check your credit report, which contains your credit score. This can be done for free from banks, credit card companies, or online sites such as Credit Sesame.

If your credit score isn’t as high as you might expect, you can improve it by improving your debt-to-income ratio – how much you earn versus how much you spend. Paying off any debt helps improve this ratio and increase your credit score in the eyes of financial institutions. Likewise, you can ask your credit card companies for credit limit increases, which reduces the percentage of your available credit that you use, thereby increasing your credit score. Finally, make sure there are no errors on your credit report. If there is, have them repaired as soon as possible.

Saving for a down payment can also make a difference. A larger down payment lowers your loan amount, which shortens your loan term, lowers your APR, and, in turn, lowers your monthly car payment. If you have bad credit, consider going with a co-signer with a high credit score, which also lowers your cost of borrowing as it gives your lender more confidence that the loan will be paid off.

You will also benefit from a better rate by taking out a used car loan instead of a new car. Less expensive than the same model bought new, a used car will save you money, because your car loan will be smaller.

You might consider getting pre-approved or prequalified for your car loan. By getting pre-approved, not only can you get a lower interest rate on your car loan, it will also cause your dealership to beat the rate you were pre-approved for, lowering your APR.

Finally, be sure to shop around for the best auto loan rates.


Methodology

The Detroit Bureau collects data from all the major lenders to establish a ranking of the best auto loan companies. Our in-depth rating system takes into account loan quality, loan availability, the application process and the borrower’s experience. Each supplier is assigned a weighted score in four categories, as well as an overall score out of 10.0.

We recommend auto credit companies based on these rankings, but we also encourage you to do your own research and compare rates to find the best financing.


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