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PNC Bank auto loans: 2024 review

2024-01-01 06:00:00

At a glance

Rating: 3.8 stars out of 5

Bankrate Score

  • Availability
    Rating: 4.4 stars out of 5
  • Affordability
    Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
  • Customer Experience
    Rating: 4.6 stars out of 5
  • Transparency
    Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
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About PNC Bank

  • Moneybag

    Loan amount


  • Credit Good

    Min. credit score

    Not specified

  • Rates

    APR from

    Not specified

  • Funds available in

    As soon as one day

Best for in-person shopping

The fully online experience isn’t best for all types of auto loan borrowers. For those who prefer handling their finances in an office setting, working with a bank can be the solution. PNC Bank couples the benefit of a large branch footprint — more than 2,600 branches across the country — with the convenience of online availability.  

PNC Bank pros and cons

PNC Bank offers some convenient online tools, but the lender still requires a visit to a local branch for some services.

Green circle with a checkmark inside


  • PNC Total Auto program
  • Automatic payment discount
  • Large branch footprint
Red circle with an X inside


  • High minimum loan amount
  • Unspecified eligibility requirements
  • Branch visit required for some loans

PNC Bank is one of the biggest banks in the U.S., with more than 2,600 branches across 29 states. It offers auto loans in person, online and over the phone — but for some loan options, you will still need to visit a branch.

This bank stands out for its PNC Total Auto program, powered by TrueCar. This service allows you to search for vehicles in your area, compare prices, apply online and receive funding overnight. Along with this, PNC offers a wide range of repayment options.

Do you qualify?

PNC does not specify its credit score or income requirements to get an auto loan. It also doesn’t offer prequalification, meaning you’ll have to complete an application and undergo a hard credit check to see whether you qualify.

You may use its loans to finance only vehicles with a model year of 2015 or newer. Borrowers using the Check Ready Loan must work with a manufacturer or one of the lender’s eligible dealers. 

PNC Bank versus PenFed

PenFed, a Virginia-based credit union, offers the same range of products to borrowers as PNC Bank with some slightly sweeter deals. PenFed is an excellent option for those financing a large amount of their next vehicle. Loan amounts go up to $150,000 — a much higher maximum than PNC offers. However, PenFed requires a savings account with the credit union in order to secure a loan.  

PNC Bank versus U.S. Bank

If working with a longstanding financial institution is a top priority, U.S. Bank is another strong contender offering the same loan products as PNC. U.S. Bank offers borrowers the ability to apply for loan preapproval along with extended loan terms in line with PNC Bank. They also have a smaller minimum loan amount of $5,000. 

Check out our PNC Bank vs. U.S. Bank comparison.

What we like and what we don’t like

Consider these benefits and drawbacks of an auto loan with PNC Bank before signing off on an application. 

What we like

  • PNC Total Auto program. PNC Total Auto guides you through the car-purchase experience from car comparison to loan application. It lets you see what other people in your area paid for cars, letting you better estimate the loan amount to apply for. 
  • Automatic payment discount. If you sign up for automatic payments through a PNC account, you will receive 0.25 percent off your APR.
  • Large branch footprint. If you prefer in-person service, PNC could be a good option. It has more than 2,600 branches in 29 states. However, if you do not live in one of those states, PNC loans aren’t available.

What we don't like

  • High minimum loan amount. PNC’s minimum loan amounts are on the higher side. If you are looking to finance a new or used car through a dealer, you must be willing to spend at least $7,500 — and you must refinance at least $7,500. 
  • Undisclosed eligibility requirements. PNC does not specify its requirements when it comes to income and credit score. This makes it harder to determine whether you will qualify for a loan with the company. 
  • Branch visit required for some loans. If you want to purchase a used car from a private seller, you will need to visit a branch. This means private sale loans are not available if you don’t live in one of the states where PNC operates. 

How to contact PNC Bank

PNC has both online and app availability as well as in-person appointments in its banks. Customer care consultants are available at 888-762-2265 Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET and on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET.

Auto loan types offered 

PNC Bank is one of the biggest banks in the U.S., with branch offices across the country. The bank offers financing for new and used vehicles along with refinancing and lease buyouts. 

The lender no longer specifies its entire APR range online and it doesn’t offer prequalification. However, you can preview the rates available for your region by entering your loan amount and ZIP code on PNC’s website.

New and used auto loans 

  • Amounts: $7,500-$100,000
  • Terms: 12-72 months
  • APR: Not specified

PNC offers new and used auto loans for both dealership purchases and purchases from a private seller. Like most banks, PNC has loan terms up to 72 months. But if you want to use its Check Ready program — and avoid visiting a branch location — you will need to buy through one of the lender’s eligible dealers


  • Amounts: $7,500-$100,000
  • Terms: 12-72 months
  • APR: Not specified

PNC allows you to refinance your auto loan to get a lower rate or change your loan term — or both. It is only available for vehicles less than eight years old and under 80,000 miles, although some exceptions exist.

Lease buyout 

  • Amounts: $7,500-$100,000
  • Terms: 12-72 months
  • APR: Not specified

If you have fallen in love with your leased vehicle, you can finance a lease buyout through PNC. Much like buying a new or used car, bringing in outside financing can give you more room to negotiate with your leasing company. 

How to apply for a loan with PNC Bank 

Applying for a new or used vehicle from a dealership using PNC’s Check Ready loan is the easiest option. The application can be filled out entirely online, and if you are approved, a check can be mailed to you overnight. Receiving your funding via check is rare. Many lenders offer funding directly to your bank account. So, if you don’t want the hassle of paying by check, consider shopping for auto loans elsewhere.

But the process is more complex for PNC’s other loans. If you opt for a non-franchise dealer — one that isn’t associated with a car manufacturer — or want to buy from a private party, you will need to visit a branch to apply. If you are approved, you can have the check mailed directly to the lender or pick up the check at your local branch.

For refinancing, you can apply online, by phone or at a branch. Once you close on the loan, PNC will send a check to your creditor to pay off your current loan. 

Features and additional perks

One stand-out feature that the Bank offers is the PNC Total Auto program, powered by TrueCar. This service can expedite the process of finding your perfect vehicle as you can explore your ZIP code to compare prices and receive funding overnight. 

Borrowers who arrange for automatic payments with a PNC checking account will benefit from a 0.25 percent discount on their rate. 

Fees and penalties 

PNC does not disclose specific fees that borrowers can expect but does not enforce a prepayment penalty. Look out for any additional costs when signing off on your loan agreement. 


How Bankrate rates PNC Bank

Overall score 3.8
Availability 4.4 While PNC offers good maximum loan amounts, its minimum loan amounts are slightly higher than those of competitors. And they’re only available in 29 states.
Affordability 3.5 PNC offers an autopay discount, but its website no longer lists its entire APR range. Its creditworthiness criteria are not specified, so you’ll need to apply to discover whether you’re eligible.
Customer experience 4.6 PNC stands out for its quick funding timeline and wide range of customer service hours.
Transparency 2.5 PNC does not offer prequalification, but you can still preview rates for your region.


The Bankrate team assessed more than 35 auto lenders to find the best. Bankrate considered 18 criteria, such as acceptance criteria, loan amounts and APR range. These scores are broken into four categories.

  • Availability: Loan amounts, repayment options, dealership requirements and state availability all contribute to this category. Lenders that serve customers nationwide with flexible loan amounts rank higher.
  • Affordability: This section houses APR ranges, acceptance criteria, fees and discounts. Lenders with the lowest rates, fewer fees and most generous acceptance criteria receive higher scores.
  • Customer experience: Our team looked at how easy it is for customers to apply for and manage their loans. Criteria include how long you have to shop, customer service hours, whether there’s an app and autopay availability.
  • Transparency: This includes prequalification and disclosure of rates and fees. We favored lenders that make it easy for customers to preview possible costs.

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the lender’s website for the most current information.

Written by
Rebecca Betterton
Writer, Auto Loans and Personal Loans
Rebecca Betterton, a Certified Financial Education Instructor℠, is a writer for Bankrate who has been reporting on auto loans since 2021.
Edited by Editor, Personal and Auto Loans