Auto loans top $1 trillion as loan amounts, leasing rise

Auto loans top $1 trillion as loan amounts, leasing rise

What anemic recovery? Auto loans totaled more than $1 trillion in the second quarter, according to Experian Automotive. Loan totals and monthly payments both increased, as consumers bought more SUVs and light trucks.

Both 30-day and 60-day loan delinquencies rose slightly, but Experian senior director of automotive finance Melinda Zabritski said that was not a cause for concern.

–The entire market is growing from a volume perspective across all risk tiers,” Zabritski said. –In fact, the subprime loans have actually dropped as a percentage of the total market.”

The average new vehicle loan amount in the second quarter was $29,880, a 4.4 percent increase from 2015. The average monthly payment for new vehicles was $499, up from $483 in 2015.

More consumers are choosing to buy used. –One of the biggest trends we continue to see is the shift to used vehicles by customers with excellent credit,” said Zabritski. –As vehicle prices continue to rise, savvy consumers are looking for ways to control costs.” The average monthly payment for a used vehicle was $364, up from $361 a year earlier.

Another way consumers are trying to control costs, and to get more car for their money, is by leasing. Leasing as a share of new-vehicle transactions jumped to a record high of 31.4 percent, up from 26.9 percent in second quarter 2015.

Download Bulletin PDF