New Auto Loan Research: What You Need to Know

A recent study form Experian sheds light on the “new normal” when it comes to consumers and auto loans. The $500 ceiling for a car payment for everyday consumers is a thing of the past, with the new average monthly payment in first quarter of this year hitting a record high of $523.

Payments aren’t the only thing going up. According to Experian, the average interest rate for a new vehicle loan was 5.17%. That’s up 31 basis points compared with first quarter of 2017.

Some other findings from the study that Experian just released:

  • The average length of an auto loan term in the first quarter rose to 5 years and 9 months.
  • 30-day delinquencies fell in the first quarter to 1.86%. The percentage of loans 60-day delinquent was unchanged at 0.66%. How does this stack up to past years? Both delinquency rates remain below the industry’s historical averages.
  • The percentage of new vehicle loans to subprime and deep subprime consumers decreased 8.4 percent and 14.1 percent while that same number for people with above average credit scores rose.
  • In the first three months of this year, the pace of new vehicles sales topped 17 million vehicles, down slightly but still higher than the historical averages.

Some key takeaways from this data from Experian are making sure that you’re still competitive, especially when it comes to term. With the average term continuing to expand, it might be time to review your policies and see if it’s time for a change.

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