Bank-backed auto loans come with the benefit of long-standing business models and tend to have the additional perk of in-person customer service.

M&T Bank and Bank of America are two excellent options when shopping for your next auto loan, but each has its own benefits and drawbacks. M&T Bank is better for borrowers who need to finance a small loan, whereas Bank of America supports drivers in all 50 states securing a loan from a dealership.

M&T Bank vs. Bank of America at a glance

M&T Bank is the better option for small, flexible auto loans, while Bank of America is a good choice if you want to shop at a dealership.

M&T Bank

Bank of America

Bankrate score 3.9 3.7
Better for
  • Small auto loans
  • 24/7 support
  • Dealership financing
  • Fast funding
Loans offered New, used, refinance, private party New, used, refinance, lease buyout
Loan amounts Starting at $2,000 Starting at $7,500
APRs 7.04%-15.69% From 5.99%
Loan term lengths Up to 84 months 48-72 months
Fees Not specified None
Minimum credit score Not specified Not specified
State footprint 12 states and Washington, D.C. All states
Time to funding Not specified As soon as same business day
Autopay discount? Yes No
Refinancing restrictions Not specified
  • Vehicle age: No more than 10 years
  • Vehicle valued at less than $6,000
  • At least $7,500 remaining on loan
  • Fewer than 125,000 miles

M&T Bank auto loans

Best for small loans

Bankrate’s view

Available to drivers in 12 states (plus Washington, D.C.), M&T Bank auto loans are a great option for those looking to finance a new or used vehicle or refinance their current loan. M&T Bank lets borrowers buy from private parties as well as dealerships — a feature Bank of America lacks.

M&T Bank also offers a discount for setting up automatic payments — though the discount’s size isn’t specified, and you’ll need a premium M&T checking account.

Unfortunately, M&T’s website doesn’t disclose the fees it charges. You may have to pay an origination fee and a prepayment fee if you pay off your loan early.


  • Low minimum loan amount: Drivers looking to secure a less expensive vehicle can benefit from the ability to finance as little as $2,000 with an auto loan from M&T Bank.
  • Wide range of loan terms: M&T Bank allows borrowers to extend their loans for up to 84 months, a feature that is becoming more common among lenders.
  • 24/7 customer support: M&T Bank boasts 24/7 customer support if you need assistance when exploring loan options or pay-off. Bank of America only offers support six days a week.


  • Smaller statewide coverage: M&T Bank only serves residents of 12 states and Washington, D.C.
  • Vehicle information is required: In order to apply you must have your vehicle identification number available, which can be a challenge for those still shopping around for a car.
  • No prequalification: Prequalifying for an auto loan can provide you with a firm grasp on expected costs and terms before you fill out a full application — a benefit not offered by M&T Bank.

Bank of America auto loans

Best for dealership financing

Bankrate’s view

Bank of America covers all 50 states and boasts serious name recognition. And unlike M&T, Bank of America partners with dealerships to provide funding for new and used vehicles. They also offer auto loan refinance in addition to lease buyout loans — something M&T Bank doesn’t offer.

There are multiple benefits as well, such as competitive (though average) rates and a fast funding timeline. But to get rate discounts, you must be a preferred rewards member with a deposit or investment account balance of $20,000.


  • Minimal fees: According to a Bank of America representative, there are no fees. While this is not uncommon, it does beat out M&T Bank’s unspecified fees.
  • Fast funding: Bank of America is able to fund its loans as soon as one business day after approval.
  • Expansive loan coverage: Drivers in all 50 states can secure auto loan financing with Bank of America — provided you shop at approved dealerships.


  • High minimum loan amount: You must finance — or refinance — at least $7,500 with Bank of America. Not only is this much higher than the $2,000 minimum from M&T, it is higher than the industry average, too.
  • Member-only discounts:  Bank of America doesn’t offer an autopay discount, and you must have a premium account to qualify for rate discounts.
  • No prequalification: As with M&T Bank, you must complete an application and take a small credit score hit to see your possible rates.

How to choose between M&T Bank and Bank of America

The primary consideration between M&T Bank and Bank of America is where you live. Bank of America is your only option if you don’t live in a state serviced by M&T Bank.

If you live in a serviced area, consider potential rates. Bank of America has lower starting rates than the average auto loan, which sits at around 7.18 percent for new cars. M&T Bank offers market average rates, but its maximum APR is much lower, which means you may be able to get a very competitive deal.

But remember, the lowest auto loan rate displayed is not always the one you will walk away with. M&T Bank’s low maximum is a big positive, especially when you consider that Bank of America doesn’t provide a maximum rate.

Choose M&T Bank for smaller, more flexible financing options

M&T Bank is the better option for flexible financing — and small auto loans. Loans under $5,000 are rare, so the minimum of $2,000 for both used cars and refinancing is a big benefit.

It also offers loan terms of up to 84 months, and while extending your loan term might not be the best choice for every borrower, it can help you to secure a much less expensive monthly payment. This makes it an especially good option if you want to reduce your monthly payment.

Choose Bank of America for dealership auto loans

Handling vehicle financing through a dealership means a seamless shopping experience. If a positive dealership experience interests you, consider applying with Bank of America and working with one of Bank of America’s authorized dealers.

Plus, by applying directly with Bank of America rather than through the dealership, you may be able to dodge the typical dealership loan rate markup.

Compare more lenders before applying

Both M&T Bank and Bank of America boast standard products and solid customer service for drivers who want to work with a bank.

Before signing off, consider other banks and online lenders to see which best fits your needs. If you have poor credit, nontraditional lenders may be more likely to approve your loan.