UK car buyers shifting towards online finance

Mark Johnson's picture
by Mark Johnson

Anyone in the UK looking to finance their new wheels are more likely than ever to do it online according to a new survey by credit scoring firm FICO.

The company said that 21 per cent of car buyers said they got their auto loan online, up from 15 per cent last year. Moreover, 37 per cent plan to find their auto loan online next time.

The good news for the UK market was that car buyers got their loans faster than most other countries surveyed. FICO added that car buyers in the UK are finding more of their financing online. 

That data comes from the second annual survey on auto financing conducted by leading analytic software firm FICO, which showed that:

  • 21 per cent of UK buyers got their financing online vs. 15 per cent last year, an increase of almost 33 per cent.
  • Of the nine countries in Europe and the Americas surveyed, only Chile saw more respondents getting loans online (24 per cent).
  • 37 per cent of UK car buyers said they would prefer to apply online the next time they buy a car.
Dream machines: UK car buyers look online for finance

Consumer view of financing

The research, which looked at how consumers view the financing aspect of their auto purchase for new and used vehicles, also showed that UK car buyers got their financing faster than any other country but Germany, which tied with the UK:

  • 55 per cent of respondents got their financing in less than 30 minutes.
  • However, this was less than last year, when 63 per cent of buyers waited less than 30 minutes.

Nonetheless, UK car buyers found the process easier than people in other countries:

  • 82 per cent found it easy, just above Germany (81 per cent) and Mexico (80 per cent), and well above the USA (68 per cent).

"Consumers are taking greater control of the auto financing process," said Steve Hadaway, general manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at FICO. 

"They are moving online in their search for a better deal. Those lenders that can instantly offer a superior financial package based on analysis of the applicant's data stand to gain."

FICO's independent research surveyed 2,000 adult consumers across nine countries, including the US, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Spain, and the UK. 

The respondents were between the ages of 18-64 who acquired a loan or lease on a new or used vehicle within the last 3 years.

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