US new auto loans on record levels image

The average amount of a new-vehicle loan in the United States are higher than ever, according to the latest report from Experian Automotive.

The auto market is keeping its upward trend in the United States, even after it reached record levels in 2015. Last month, automakers have reported the best February auto sales in 15 years, following a strong start of the year. The driving factors remain the same: low fuel prices, credit availability and steady jobs. Therefore, it is no wonder that Americans are borrowing more money and leasing more new cars than ever. The average amount of a new-vehicle loan in the US rose by 4 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier to a record of 29,551 dollars, according to the “State of Automotive Financing” quarterly report from Experian Automotive. It is the highest level since the company started gathering data in 2008. The leases accounted for 33.6 percent of new car sales in the last quarter of 2015, up from 29,9 percent a year earlier.

“People shop for vehicles largely based on vehicle price, and right now average dollar amounts for new vehicle loans are soaring,” said Melinda Zabritski, Experian senior director of automotive finance. “In order to stay within their budget goals we have seen that more consumers are turning to leasing and used vehicles as alternatives.” The average monthly payment on a new vehicle was 493 dollars, while the average lease payment hit 412 dollars, the report shows. As for the loan terms for new and used vehicles, they stretched by one month each, to an average of 67 months for new cars and 63 months for used, compared with the fourth quarter of 2014.

Via Automotive News