National auto loan rates for March 10, 2011

Interest Rate Roundup
Auto loan rate graph

Auto Loans

  • 5.61% (60-month, new car)
  • 6.57% (36-month, used car)

Here's a look at the state of auto loan rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted March 9, 2011.

Auto loan rates fell this week. The average rates for 48-month new-car loans and 60-month new-car loans declined 56 basis points, to 5.56 percent and 5.61 percent, respectively. The significant change in rates is attributed to how some rates are quoted to Bankrate when conducting the survey, not changes in the rates borrowers are receiving.

Used-car loan rates were also down. The average rate for a 36-month used-car loan, a popular option for auto loan refinancing, declined 62 basis points, to 6.57 percent.

Gas prices nationwide have skyrocketed since our last survey, rising more than 30 cents in the last two weeks, from $3.19 on average, to $3.52, according to the Department of Energy. Much of those price increases are due to political instability in the Middle East, especially in Libya and Egypt, according to a report in the Detroit Free Press. The DOE also raised price expectations for the summer, predicting pump prices would hit $3.75 by June.

To find updated auto rates in your area, visit Bankrate's auto rate table.

-- Claes Bell




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