Schaumburg, Ill., May 31, 2018 – Many industry pundits expect new vehicles sales to continue their downward trend. According to Experian’s State of the Automotive Finance Market Report released today, one reason for the trend may be the rise in loan amounts, monthly payments and interest rates for new vehicles. In fact, average new vehicle loan amounts and monthly payments recently hit record highs.
Findings show the average new vehicle loan hit $31,455 in Q1 2018, an increase of $921 from the previous year. The monthly payment for a new vehicle climbed to $523, a $15 increase over the same period. The average interest rate for a new vehicle was 5.17 percent during the quarter.
“The dream of owning a new vehicle is becoming more elusive to the average American,” said Melinda Zabritski, Experian’s senior director of automotive financial solutions. “To reverse the trend, dealers and lenders need to better understand the data and explore different options to make new vehicle ownership accessible and appealing.”
The report also spotlights that loan terms for new vehicles have also increased during the quarter (slightly above 69 months). While 72-month loans remain the most common loan term, more new loans have spilled into the 85- to 96-month bucket.
The population segments most impacted are subprime and deep subprime consumers. The percentage of new vehicle loans to subprime and deep subprime consumers has decreased 8.4 percent and 14.1 percent, respectively. The percentage of new vehicle loans to prime and super prime consumers has reached 73.4 percent, the highest Q1 level since 2012 – a sign that some lenders have become more risk-averse.
Delinquencies trend down; evidence of a strong loan market
While some lenders have reduced loans to riskier borrowers, the overall automotive loan market shows signs of improvement. The percentage of 30-day delinquencies have dropped 3.1 percent to 1.90 percent in Q1 2018, while 60-day delinquencies have remained flat at 0.67 percent.
“Traditionally, lenders’ risk tolerance has swung back and forth like a pendulum, and right now we’re seeing a more risk-averse side. But if payments continue to improve, we could see credit standards loosen,” Zabritski continued. “The more insight lenders have into consumer credit behavior, the better decisions they can make.”
Additional findings include:
• Outstanding loan balances reached a record high of $1.108 trillion
• Credit unions continue to see the highest growth in automotive loan market share, reaching 21.3 percent, a 6.9 percent increase from a year ago
• The average credit score for a new vehicle loan rose to 716 in Q1 2018, while the average credit score for a used vehicle loan rose to 655 during the same period
• Loans for used vehicles reached $19,536 in Q1 2018, a new record high.
To view the State of the Automotive Finance Market report webinar, visit https://www.experian.com/automotive/automotive-webinars.html
Experian Public Relations
1 714 830 7561
Experian is the world’s leading global information services company. During life’s big moments – from buying a home or a car, to sending a child to college, to growing a business by connecting with new customers – we empower consumers and our clients to manage their data with confidence. We help individuals to take financial control and access financial services, businesses to make smarter decisions and thrive, lenders to lend more responsibly, and organizations to prevent identity fraud and crime.
We have 16,500 people operating across 39 countries and every day we’re investing in new technologies, talented people and innovation to help all our clients maximize every opportunity. We are listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and are a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.
Experian and the Experian marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.