Credit Report & Score

What Is A Good Credit Score To Buy A Car? (And How To Improve Yours)

What Is A Good Credit Score To Buy A Car? (And How To Improve Yours)
Reviewed by Nima Vahdat
Updated November 8, 2023

A credit score of 660 and above is considered to be a good credit score for being approved for an auto loan.

With a higher credit score, you have a better chance of getting approved for an auto loan and also getting a lower interest rate. 

However, this may not always be the case as there are other factors that lenders consider when approving an auto loan. This score helps lenders determine the level of risk involved in lending money to a borrower.


  • A good credit score can save you thousands of dollars in interest over the lifespan of your car loan.
  • A higher credit score can also give you access to lower monthly payments, smaller down payments, and a higher chance for approval.
  • It is important to know your credit score before applying for a car loan as it can affect the terms and conditions of your financing.
  • If you have a lower credit score, consider taking steps to improve it before applying for a car loan.

If you’re in the market for a new car, one of the first things you need to consider is your credit score. 

Your credit score not only determines whether or not you will be approved for an auto loan, but it also plays a crucial role in determining the interest rate and terms of your loan.

But what exactly is a good credit score when it comes to buying a car? Let’s take a closer look at this commonly asked question and debunk some common misconceptions along the way.

What Is A Credit Score?

Before we get into the specifics of the credit score needed for an auto purchase, let’s steer the conversation into a brief overview of what a credit score actually is. 

Simply put, a credit score is a numerical representation of your creditworthiness. This number is determined by various factors such as payment history, amount of debt, length of credit history, new credit accounts opened, and types of credit used.

The most common type of credit score used by lenders is the FICO Score which ranges from 300 to 850. The higher your credit score, the better. A good credit score shows that you are financially responsible and are likely to repay any debts in a timely manner. 

This is why financial education early on is so important. If you haven’t optimized your credit score yet, don’t worry. There are several ways to improve it and raise your chances of getting approved for a loan.

How To Improve Your Credit Score For Car Loans

Imagine that you receive a call that you got your dream job just outside of your city, but you need a car to get there. You have enough savings for the down payment, and now all that stands between you and your new job is getting approved for an auto loan. 

The first step you should take is to assess your credit report and see where you stand. If your credit score is not in the ideal range, there are a few things that you can do to improve it before applying for a car loan.

One of the first steps you should take is to pay off any remaining credit card debt. This will lower your credit utilization rate and show lenders that you are responsible for your finances. 

Additionally, keeping your utilization ratio to under 30% will also help improve your credit score.

Another strategy is to make sure you pay all of your bills on time. 

Late payments can severely impact your credit score, so it’s important to prioritize paying your bills promptly. Set up automatic payments or put reminders in place to ensure you don’t miss any due dates.

If you have a limited credit history, consider becoming an authorized user on someone else’s credit card. This means that you will have access to their credit line and any timely payments they make will also reflect positively on your credit score.

You can also look into debt consolidation or a debt settlement plan. These options may help you pay off outstanding debts at a more manageable rate, which in turn can improve your credit score over time. 

However, it’s important to research these options thoroughly and only choose reputable companies to work with. Americor serves as your guide to finding debt relief solutions and can connect you with trustworthy experts to help you make the best decision for your financial situation.

What Credit Score Do You Need To Buy A Car?

Previously, we mentioned that FICO considers a credit score ranging from 300 to 850. However, there is an alternative known as the FICO Auto Score, which ranges from 250 to 900. 

This score specifically evaluates your creditworthiness for purchasing a car. 600 is the standard benchmark for a good credit score for some auto lenders but each individual lender will have their own requirements. 

Generally, a score between 660 to 724 is considered good according to Equifax, while a score above that is excellent.Although this is the range for approval, the higher your score is, the better interest rate you will likely receive. This means that having a higher credit score can save you thousands of dollars in interest over the lifespan of your car loan. 

Smaller down payments, higher chances of approval, and lower monthly payments are also reasons that a good credit score is important when buying a car.

A down payment is the initial sum of money paid towards the purchase price, and it reduces the amount you need to borrow. For those with less-than-ideal credit scores, lenders may require a larger down payment as insurance in case you default on your loan.

If inventory on vehicles is low or you are shopping for a car that is in high demand, a higher credit score can help you secure financing faster and increase your chances of getting the car you want.

Finally, lower monthly payments can free up cash flow, allowing you to have more financial flexibility for other expenses. This is especially beneficial if you are already struggling with high levels of credit card debt or other loans.

At Americor, we understand the importance of managing your finances wisely. 

As America’s trusted source for debt relief solutions, we aim to empower you with financial knowledge that can lead to informed decisions, whether it’s about savings, investments, or managing debt.

If high-interest debts are impacting your savings, investments, and financial well-being, explore our debt relief solutions, including debt settlement and debt consolidation, to regain control of your financial future.

If your debt has become unmanageable and you have difficulty making your debt payments each month, then you should consider a free consultation call with one of our certified Debt Consultants, who can provide personalized advice tailored to your specific needs.

By taking proactive steps today, you can put an end to your financial stress and work towards a brighter financial future. 

Remember, there is always hope for debt relief, and our team of experienced professionals are ready to guide you on your journey to regaining control of your finances.

For more information on Americor’s debt relief services, contact us today to see how we can help you eliminate your debts, and get on the fast-track to becoming completely debt-free!