LOS ANGELES -- Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. has created three finance plans aimed at qualifying young buyers with limited or no credit history to buy a new Scion car.
Scion, Toyota's new youth-focused sales channel, will allow customers to determine their financing rate and payment online at its corporate Web site just by knowing their credit score. As an added incentive, anyone who finances through "Scion Solutions" will get a $50 gift card good on Scion accessories and parts.
Buyers can find out their credit score by visiting credit information sites such as www.myfico.com.
Dave Nordstrom, Toyota Financial Services corporate manager of product, lease and remarketing, says Scion is trying to make financing as simple as its no-haggle pricing plan. The Scion Web site offers a "Credit 101" primer that walks a customer through the intricacies of vehicle financing.
"A customer who is shopping for a Scion can look at the price, go into the payment calculator and know what his financing rate is," Nordstrom says. "So he can walk into the dealer knowing what his vehicle is going to cost and what the monthly payment's going to be.
"Scion buyers are looking for a consistent and transparent finance process. What you see is what you get."
Scion financing rates will range from 4.5 percent for a consumer with a good credit history, to 6.25 percent for fair history and 9.0 percent for someone with no credit history. Scion will have three finance programs:
1. "Gen-One" is for a buyer with no credit history who does not have a co-applicant for a loan. The customer's minimum monthly gross income must exceed $1,500. The amount financed cannot exceed $18,000 and is limited to 90 percent of dealer invoice price. This plan is only for Scion customers and is not duplicated for Toyota or Lexus, Nordstrom says.
2. "iFinance" is for a retail or lease customer with limited credit history and no co-applicant. A customer must have at least one satisfactory line of credit of at least $500 for the previous year. A minimum down payment of 10 percent is required. The amount financed cannot exceed $18,000 and is limited to 100 percent of the vehicle's dealer invoice price.
3. "College Graduate" applicants qualify for the Zone 1 new-car financing - "our best rate," Nordstrom says - for a retail term of up to 72 months. If it is a lease, the applicant gets a lease security deposit waiver. The applicant must have a college degree and proof of current or future employment. The grad also gets a $400 cash rebate.
Scion also will offer a lease deal on both vehicles at launch. The xA can be had for $171 a month for 60 months, with $771 down, excluding options, tax, title and registration. The xB's 60-month lease requires $788 down and a payment of $188 a month.