Auto Loan Calculator

Estimate your monthly car payments using our auto loan calculator.

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How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.
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How to use our auto loan calculator

By using this car payment calculator, you can estimate what your car payment may be based on how much you plan to borrow, how long your loan is and your interest rate. Here’s what you need to know about each category:

  1. Total loan amount: Input how much you plan to borrow for your car loan. Take into account the purchase price of your new car (and, if applicable, the trade-in value of your current car). If the total amount of your car loan is too expensive for your budget, consider a smaller car loan.
  2. Term (months): This is the length of your loan — in other words, how long you have to pay it back Typically, lenders offer anywhere between 12 to 84 months. Taking out a long-term car loan can reduce how much you pay each month, but you’ll pay more in interest.
  3. Interest rate: Your interest rate is how much your lender is charging you to borrow money. It is typically expressed within a loan’s annual percentage rates (APRs), which also include fees.
  4. Estimated auto payment: Once you enter the above information into our car loan calculator, you’ll see your estimated monthly payment.
In Q4 2023, the average new car payment was $738 and the average used car payment was $532, according to Experian’s State of the Automotive Finance Market Report. If your estimated monthly payment is too high, you can tweak your loan to lower your car payment.

Average interest rate for a car loan

In Q4 2023, the average interest rate for a new car was 7.18% and 11.93% for a used car, according to Experian. When it comes to auto loans, most lenders use simple interest. This means that lenders will charge you interest based on the leftover principal you have each month.

The auto loan rates you receive from lenders also heavily depend on your credit score. A bad credit score can land you with rates as high as 21.55% whereas an excellent credit score can get you an average auto loan rate of 5.64%. A less-than-ideal credit score can make it difficult to qualify with a lender, but there are bad credit car loans with low credit requirements.

Here’s the average car loan rate based on your credit score:

Credit scoreNew car average loan rateUsed car average loan rate
Super prime (781-850)5.64%7.66%
Prime (661-780)7.01%9.73%
Nonprime (601-660)9.60%14.12%
Subprime (501-600)12.28%18.89%
Deep subprime (300-500)14.78%21.55%

Source: Experian State of the Automotive Finance Market, Q4 2023

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What to consider before taking out a car loan

New vs. used car

When buying a car, you’ll need to decide whether to get a new or used vehicle. This can play a role in what financing options are available to you and how much of an auto loan you’ll need to take out.

A new car purchase generally comes with better and more convenient financing options. Used cars, on the other hand, tend to cost less.

Leasing vs. buying a car

Another factor to consider when shopping for a new vehicle is whether you want to buy or lease a car. Instead of owning your car at the end of your auto loan, leasing a car requires that you make monthly loan payments for a predetermined amount of time. Once that time is up, you’ll have to return the car.

Some lenders offer car lease buyouts, which extend the option to purchase your car, typically at the end of your lease. However, you may have the option to buy your car earlier in the lease, too.

Getting preapproved for a car loan

Shopping around and getting preapproved car loans from banks, credit unions and/or online lenders can give you an advantage during the vehicle financing process. Be sure to get preapproved with at least three lenders so you can compare car loan rates, terms and borrowing amounts.

Preapproval requires a hard credit pull — which can bring your credit score down by a few points —- but is a firm offer from a lender. Once you close on your loan, your APR will be similar, if not the same, as your preapproved rate. You can use these offers to negotiate with lenders.

Trading in your car

If you currently own a vehicle, you can trade in your car and put its value toward your car payment. You can determine your car’s worth by using online resources such as Kelley Blue Book (KBB), National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) or Edmunds.

However, you may make more money if you sell your car privately through a site like Craigslist.

Vehicle rebates

A vehicle rebate is a discount some auto manufacturers offer on new cars. Car rebates can include cash discounts, low auto loan rates and special lease deals. For instance, some auto companies, like Toyota, offer 0% APR car deals.

Car loan fees

As with many forms of credit, you may have to pay some car loan fees when you buy your new vehicle. Some common types of fees include registration and title fees, administrative fees and destination charges (if you have the vehicle shipped). Keep in mind these dealer fees to avoid buying a car since they can unnecessarily add to the total cost of your bill.

Car loan taxes

When you buy a car, you’ll need to pay local and state taxes on your purchase. The most common tax that comes with a car loan is a sales tax. Some states, such as Oregon, don’t charge a sales tax or levy local sales taxes. Other states, such as California, charge sales tax as high as 7.25%.

In some instances, buying a car is tax-deductible. For instance, when you file your taxes, you may be able to deduct the sales tax you paid on your car.

Frequently asked questions

The best time to get an auto loan for a new car is typically from August to September because many car manufacturers are rolling out their new models. October through December is generally an ideal time of year for used cars.

Since your credit score can signal to lenders your reliability as a borrower, many auto loan companies rely on your credit score to determine your car loan rates. While the required credit score needed to buy a car depends on the lender, the higher your score, the lower the interest rate you may get.

Yes, your auto loan interest is calculated daily based on what is left on the principal of your car loan. This is why it’s a good idea to pay extra on the principal when you can.