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Lowest Credit Union Car Loan Rates

Car 3 min read

19 Jan 2021

4WheelGuide: Your roadmap to buying a new or used car 

Our world changed on 13th March 2020 when Ireland went into the first of the COVID-19 lockdowns. With that, so did consumer spending, saving and borrowing. 

Between April and August, Irish households saved an additional €4.7 billion as guidelines encouraged people to close the wallet. With this additional cash, many households now have significant purchasing power to consider and one of the items that you may be considering investing in during 2021 is a new car – whether it be an upgrade, larger family car, hybrid, used or your very first car! 

If you are in the market for a car and want to either top up your savings to purchase your dream car or keep your nest egg intact and plan to borrow, we have rounded up some of the best credit union car loan rates out there – and you never know, maybe there is a deal to be had with your local credit union. 

Best Credit Union Car Loan Rates 

Credit union car loan rates are very competitive. The lowest interest rate that a credit union offered on car loans in 2020 was 5% APR in the Republic of Ireland available from both Enfield Credit Union  and St. Paul’s Garda Credit Union, while in Northern Ireland Lurgan Credit Union's rate was 6.5% APR^.   

Every credit union is independent, so each one will set different interest rates for their car loans.  

In the Republic of Ireland, two thirds of credit unions offer a dedicated car loan rate. Of those credit unions with a dedicated rate, the average credit union car loan rate charged was 7.76% APR. Looking at the overall average rate i.e. (using the personal loan rate if the credit union doesn’t offer a dedicated car loan rate), the average rate charged was 8.6% APR. 

In Northern Ireland, the majority of credit unions, have one standard loan rate. Of the sample surveyed, 13% had a dedicated rate for car loans. Of these rates, the average was 7.87% APR. Looking at the average rate charged for a member purchasing a car (using the credit unions standard rate if they do not have a dedicated car loan rate), the average rate was 12.02%. 

Many credit unions also offer discounted or promotional rates at certain times of the year so if your credit union wasn’t mentioned above, why not pop a quick enquiry to your local credit union and they’ll be back to you with any promotional offers they currently may have. 


Credit Union Car Loan Approval 

Our latest statistics show that 95.5% of credit union loans are approved*. Credit unions will do all they can to approve a car loan application, provided the borrower can demonstrate ability to repay the loan. But don’t worry, the credit union won’t ask you for anything over and above what other financial institutions will ask you for. You can read more about applying for a credit union loan here.  

To apply for a car loan at from your credit union, you must first be a member. If you’re not already a member, again no need to worry. Joining a credit union is pretty straightforward. Of course, you’ll need the usual documents such as proof of identity and proof of address etc. And in the majority of credit unions, once you join you can apply for your car loan right away! 

So if you’re in the market for a car loan why not contact your local credit union who will come back to you with details on the interest rates they currently offer? Alternatively, to see what the average car loan rate will cost you – check out our handy credit union car loan calculator

Submit an Online Loan Enquiry

Keep an eye out for #4WheelGuide across FacebookTwitter, or Instagram for more great advice on budgeting, choosing and buying your car as well as design and style ideas and inspiring stories – so you can gear up for the car of your dreams. 


^The loan rate data was taken from an analysis carried out by the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU) of its affiliated credit unions from 25/06/2020 to 08/07/2020.  

 *ILCU Marketing andLending Survey 2019, refers to standard loan applications which were completed in full.