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GMC was born when General Motors bought two truck companies and merged them. Today, GMC still doesn’t make any cars, but manufactures a series of trucks, SUVs and vans, which it markets with the tagline, “we are professional grade” and the hashtag, “like a pro.”
Pros still like rebates and there is a wide range of GMC incentives available, not all of which require you to finance with GMC. You could finance through your own lender, such as your bank or credit union, and possibly still get a rebate. So don’t let fear of missing out on rebates stop you from shopping around for an auto loan like you would shop around for a car. Apply to several lenders to compare offers and take what suits you best. Multiple loan applications within a 14-day window won’t hurt your credit any more than one application.
But if you’re interested in a GMC vehicle, then you should consider GMC as one of your possible lenders. In this article, we’ll cover the company, its financing, rebates, incentives and leasing, as well as alternatives to financing through GMC.
GMC first became famous for the industrial strength of its trucks in World War I when 90% of its truck production was used by the military. After World War II, Gen. Eisenhower named two GMC trucks in a list of the six machines that contributed the most toward the Allies’ victory. That said, word on the street in recent years has been that GMC vehicles are all Chevrolet trucks with a different logo slapped on and an increased price. (General Motors owns both Chevy and GMC.) There are differences in models, looks and trims between the brands; whether these differences are worth the price difference is up to each buyer. If you’d like to play around with what your payment might be based on prices, you could use this auto payment calculator.
General Motors owns GMC along with several other brands and uses one manufacturer finance company for all of them — GM Financial. If you bought a GMC vehicle before 2006, however, you may have heard of General Motors Acceptance Co., better known as GMAC. Because of the financial crisis, GM sold GMAC, eventually bought AmeriCredit Inc. and renamed it GM Financial to serve as its lending subsidiary. GMAC doesn’t exist any more, but GM Financial is clipping along nicely with $86 billion in assets at the end of last year.
Bottom line: if you finance with GMC, your lender is really GM Financial, which is a huge auto lender and rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau.
Like with all lenders, a GMC loan application is sorted into a credit tier. Based on which tier you are classified in, you may receive different APRs, terms and special financing offers. The higher tier you’re in, the more favorable loan offers you’ll receive. So if you don’t quite get the loan offer you thought you deserved, you can ask your salesperson, the dealership finance manager or the lender representative what it would take to get a tier bump.
Ask for a bump. You could point out reasons you might qualify for a tier bump, which could include high income, low debt, positive credit history and a down payment. And by taking this strategy, you might discover that getting a cosigner or putting more money down would change things to your advantage. Asking may or may not change your situation, but it could be worth a try.
Overall, if you finance through GMC, you can expect loan amounts ranging from $7,500 to $125,000 and terms between 24 and 72 months. The higher credit score you have, the more likely you are to get a low APR loan offer from GM Financial. Its weighted average credit score for successful applicants is around 700, but the range of acceptable credit scores dips to 550. If you’re not sure what yours is, you can check your credit score here.
You can apply for GMC financing at a dealership or online. You’ll need to know exactly which vehicle model you want and provide your personal, residential and employment information.
To qualify for some GMC rebates and incentives you may not have to choose GM Financial as your lender. It is a requirement for others and, in some cases, you may have to choose between a cash rebate and a low APR offer.
Which is better, a rebate or special financing? When GMC gives you the option to choose between special, low APR financing and a rebate, you’re essentially being offered different ways to use the same amount of money. If you choose the low APR financing, you’re using the rebate money to buy down the APR instead of just taking the rebate as cash to reduce the vehicle price.
It’s almost always better to take the rebate instead of the low APR because you get the money now. Buying down the APR means you’ll have to keep the car for the full loan term in order to capture all the value. A lot of people don’t keep the car for the full loan term, meaning they miss out on at least some of the savings.
Note that the rebates, incentives and their requirements listed are not all-inclusive and are liable to change often. Be sure to check GMC’s website or with a GMC dealer for more information.
If you like to get a new car every few years or you have your eye on a vehicle that’s a bit out of budget, leasing might be a good option for you. GMC offers “ultra low-mileage” leases (30,000 miles in three years). If you’re worried you might go over the mileage limit or that you’ll have excess wear and tear, you could buy the XS Wear Lease Protection from GMC that could cover some charges on leases up to 48 months.
If you want more information on leasing or you’re unsure how to decide, you could check out our guide on whether to lease or buy.
If you’re curious about leasing and you’re already applying for an auto loan, you could go ahead and apply to lease as well. Remember, multiple applications with a 14-day window won’t hurt your credit any more than doing one application, and it’s beneficial to see all your options.
Other lenders you could apply to include banks, credit unions and online lenders. No matter whether you think you’ll qualify with GM Financial, you should get multiple auto loan offers from lenders. Before you go to the dealership, know your credit score and know what ARPs you qualify for, so you’ll come prepared, and the dealership won’t be able to increase your APR unduly. You could read up on the benefits of getting preapproved and fill out a form here to see up to five different offers from lenders.
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