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Fifth Third Bank Auto Loan Review

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Rates as of 3/11/2019

When shopping for an auto loan, it’s a good idea to evaluate several companies. Here, we’ll talk about how an auto loan from Fifth Third Bank works, as well as some of the benefits and drawbacks of this lender.

About Fifth Third Bank auto loans

Fifth Third Bank is a full-service bank with 1,200 locations in 10 states throughout the Midwest and South. Auto loans are one of the financial products offered by Fifth Third Bank. You can go through the application process online, so there’s no need to visit a bank branch.

Not all products are available throughout the U.S. Fifth Third Bank offers complete financial services and products to residents of Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee and West Virginia.

You can get pre-approved for an auto loan before you start shopping for your car. You may also get a loan through Fifth Third Bank if you purchase a vehicle from a dealer that uses the bank as a lender. Fifth Third Bank offers auto lending services to franchise dealers selling new and used vehicles in 45 states.

If you want to refinance your current auto loan, Fifth Third Bank offers that option. It gives customers who bring their existing auto loan to Fifth Third Bank a 0.25% rate discount.

Although you don’t need a checking account with Fifth Third Bank to apply for an auto loan, it offers discounts for bank customers.

Customers with Preferred Checking or Enhanced Checking accounts who are eligible for the monthly service charge waiver at the time the loan is originated can get a 0.25% rate discount.

You could also get a 0.25% rate discount if you make your monthly payments using the Auto BillPayer service. This free service makes automatic payments from your Fifth Third Bank checking account or savings account each month. Only Fifth Third Bank account holders are eligible to use Auto BillPayer.

If you prefer to have a checking account through Fifth Third Bank but can’t meet the requirements for waived monthly fees with the Enhanced Checking or Preferred Checking accounts, the Essential Checking account also offers waived fees for auto loan customers.

Fifth Third Bank auto loans: At a glance

When shopping for a vehicle or researching refinancing options, it’s important to understand your financing options. You may not receive the lowest possible interest rate from a dealership’s finance department. Dealers may raise a customer’s APR, so the best way to know if you are getting the best rate is to compare offers from multiple lenders.

Here are some things to know:

  • Auto loans through Fifth Third Bank are subject to credit review.
  • Fifth Third Bank offers financing for auto loans between $2,000 and $80,000.
  • It’ll provide loan terms between 12 and 75 months.
  • Although longer loan terms may have lower monthly payments, they may also have higher interest rates, which means you’ll pay more money over the life of the loan.
  • Since the value of a vehicle depreciates over time, you may end up owing more money than the car is worth if you choose a longer loan term.

The following examples, from Fifth Third Bank’s online loan calculator, are subject to credit approval. The rates shown here include the 0.25% interest discount available when borrowers choose to have their loan payment taken from their Fifth Third Bank checking account. Interest rates offered by dealer affiliates may be higher than those shown here.

Payment and APR ranges for financing a $20,000 new or used model year 2018 vehicle, with a $165 loan fee included

Monthly Payment Loan Term APR
$591.90 36 months 4.711%
$453.01 48 months 4.579%
$374.32 60 months 5.001%
$323.59 72 months 5.449%

Payment and APR ranges for financing a $35,000 new or used model year 2018 vehicle, with a $165 loan fee included

Monthly Payment Loan Term APR
$1,035.83 36 months 4.474%
$792.78 48 months 4.399%
$655.06 60 months 4.854%
$566.27 72 months 5.325%

How to apply for financing

Like any lender, Fifth Third Bank will evaluate your credit to determine whether you are a risk. The information in your credit file will help determine your APR. Whether you apply at a Fifth Third Bank branch or go through the online process to get pre-approved for an auto loan, you’ll need these basic documents:

  • Government-issued ID like a passport or driver’s license
  • Two most recent pay stubs showing year-to-date income
  • Tax returns from the past two years if you are self-employed
  • Proof of additional income sources
  • Social Security number
  • Proof of residence (example: current auto insurance policy, credit card bill, property tax bill, bank statement showing current address or utility bill)

The fine print

Fifth Third Bank charges a $165 auto loan fee for new and refinanced loans. Borrowers can choose to pay the fee separately at closing or they can finance the fee with their auto loan. The first loan payment is due 30 days from the date of closing.

The bank also offers an option to make no payments for 90 days as a relationship benefit to bank customers. Although interest will accrue during the 90 days you aren’t making payments, it could offer some short-term breathing room in an otherwise tight budget. You’ll need to contact the bank for more specifics of this option.

Pros and cons of financing through Fifth Third Bank

The best way to learn about your APR and financing options with Fifth Third Bank is to apply for pre-approval. Getting approved for an auto loan can be exciting, but it’s crucial to get several loan offers from different lenders so you can compare their terms.

Highlights of Fifth Third Bank auto loan financing

If you have or plan to open a checking account, Fifth Third Bank offers the advantage of an additional interest rate discount of 0.25%. You can also make loan payments automatically through its Auto BillPayer service.

If you have a relationship with Fifth Third Bank and you decide to get an auto loan or refinance your existing auto loan, you may be able to take advantage of its option to make no payments for 90 days.

Lowlights of Fifth Third Bank auto loan financing

Fifth Third Bank has 80 consumer reviews on the Better Business Bureau website, with an average rating of one star out of five. Not all reviews pertain to auto loans, but those interested in pursuing an auto loan with Fifth Third Bank should be aware of the reviews left by customers.

Not all lenders charge a loan fee. If you choose to get a loan for your vehicle or refinance your auto loan through Fifth Third Bank, you’ll pay a $165 auto loan fee.

The bottom line: Who is a Fifth Third Bank auto loan best for?

If you live in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee and West Virginia, you can apply for an auto loan from Fifth Third Bank without working with a franchised auto dealer. For residents of other states, it may not be possible to finance your car loan through Fifth Third Bank unless you go through the dealership where you purchase your car.


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