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BBVA USA Auto Loan Review

BBVA USA offers auto loans for new and used vehicles, as well as auto loan refinancing. Its APRs may not be the most competitive, but BBVA USA may consider applicants with less-than-stellar credit. Potential borrowers in seven states can apply online and get a decision on their application in as quick as one day. Keep reading to see if a BBVA USA auto loan is a good fit for you.

How BBVA USA car loans work

Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA), BBVA USA’s parent company, is based in Madrid, Spain and operates in more than 30 countries, working with more than 70 million customers. The U.S. branch was established as Central Bank and Trust Company in 1964 before its 2007 incorporation into BBVA, and was known as BBVA Compass until dropping “Compass” in April 2019. BBVA USA has its headquarters in Birmingham, Alabama.

BBVA USA has 649 branches in Texas, Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Colorado and New Mexico. BBVA USA loans are only available to residents of these seven states; others will have to look elsewhere for auto financing. But even if you do qualify, it’s a good idea to compare BBVA USA’s rates with other banks, online lenders and especially credit unions, which may offer lower rates even if your credit is weak. You may compare BBVA USA with competitors, below.

BBVA USA: Rates and terms at a glance

  • APRs between 5.24% and
  • Terms between 12 and 72 months.
  • Loan amounts starting at $5,000

BBVA USA offers financing for new and used cars purchased through dealers. You can access BBVA’s lowest rates if you borrow at least $15,000 and have car payments automatically withdrawn from a BBVA checking account.  For amounts under $15,000, the best rate available is 6.74%. Autopay trims 0.50% off the lowest APRs, which are the same for new and used vehicles.

Loan amount Maximum loan term APR
New and used $5,000 to $14,999 48 months Starting at 6.74%
New and used $15,000+ 72 months Starting at 5.24%

 

Refinance loans: BBVA USA also offers refinancing for cars and other vehicles, but its website does not provide details and a spokesperson declined to provide more information.

Credit requirements: While the bank doesn’t disclose its minimum credit requirements, its website says it can be difficult to qualify for loans from any lender with FICO scores below 640. According to a BBVA spokesperson, qualification is based on a mix of factors, including your financial capacity to repay, the value of the car you’re buying and your credit rating.

BBVA USA car loans vs. competitors

Before taking on a new loan, it’s important to shop around for rates and terms that suit you best. Banks and credit unions often discount their APRs for members or customers, so when you’re comparing rate quotes, be sure to factor in all the discounts available to you. Here’s how BBVA USA compares to a cross-section of other major lenders:

BBVA USA Bank of America LightStream PenFed
Lowest APR available (new cars) 5.24% 2.69% 3.49% 2.14%
Max APR 6.74% Not disclosed 20.49% Not disclosed
Maximum term (months) 72 60 84 84
Available or included discounts 0.50% auto-debit interest rate discount 0.25% to 0.50% Preferred Rewards discount 0.5% discount for borrowers with autopay 1.99% APR available when you use PenFed’s Car Buying Service

*LightStream rate includes autopay discount

How to apply for financing

You can apply for a BBVA USA auto loan online, in person or start an application over the phone at 844-BBVA-USA and visit a branch to complete your paperwork. Be prepared to at least provide the following documents and information:

  • State of residence
  • Contact info
  • Identification
  • Employment and financial information
  • Property or collateral information

Refinance applications may be submitted by visiting a branch or by starting an application over the phone and completing any necessary paperwork at a branch. If you want to take advantage of the autopay discount, you’ll need to open a checking account prior to closing on your auto loan.

The fine print

Information on the BBVA USA website is vague when it comes to details for each of its auto loans. For example, the maximum loan amount is unclear as is whether you can use a BBVA USA car loan to purchase a vehicle from a private seller. Here are a few more points to consider:

  • Details on refinance loan amounts, terms and rates are not available.
  • Residents of Alabama must be 19 years old to apply. Those who live in other qualifying states can apply at age 18.
  • Mileage restrictions and other vehicle restrictions aren’t stated on BBVA USA’s website.
  • You may be able to use a BBVA USA loan for a boat, motorcycle and RV, but the details for these vehicles are also unclear.

Is a car loan from BBVA USA worth it?

BBVA USA offers auto loans that you can get approved for within one day, but you’re likely to find better rates elsewhere, especially if your credit is strong and you plan to buy a new car. Competitors also make information more readily available on their websites; you may need to call or visit a bank branch to learn if BBVA USA will finance the car you’d like to buy.

Here are some additional pluses and minuses to financing through BBVA USA.

Pros of BBVA USA auto loans

  • No penalty for early repayment of your auto loan
  • No documentation fees for your application or loan processing
  • 0.50% autopay discount available

Cons of BBVA USA auto loans

  • Interest rates are high compared to competitors, even with discounts applied.
  • Credit requirements and other loan details are unclear.

Who is a BBVA USA car loan best for?

Existing BBVA USA customers who already have a checking account and are willing to set up automatic payments for their car loan would be the best candidate for a BBVA USA auto loan. With the same starting APRs for new and used, used car buyers may find decent rates here, but keep in mind that the best rates go to those who plan to borrow at least $15,000.

But even if both of those conditions apply to you, be sure to shop around and see if another lender can give you a better deal. Other applicants may want to skip BBVA USA altogether.

 

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