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How to finance a Subaru

Plus, explore the brand's special car-buyer programs to help you save.

Updated

Fact checked

Editor's choice: Carvana

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  • Most credit types welcome
  • 45-day preapproval
  • Seven-day guarantee
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According to USA Today, Subaru ranks number three in customer satisfaction among car manufacturers. If you’re interested in buying one of these midrange cars, you have a few financing options to consider. Though Subaru is pricier than some of the competition, its vehicles come with a solid warranty and you could even score a special rate discount.

How can I finance a Subaru?

You can finance your Subaru a few ways: through a car loan, manufacturer financing or by taking out a personal loan. A car loan is generally the least expensive option. Not only will you be taking out a secured loan, which typically has lower rates than a personal loan without collateral, but you’ll also cut out the middleman. This means no tacked-on interest to cover the dealership’s costs.

However, it may not be your quickest option. To find the best deal, you’ll have to compare rates from different online lenders, banks and credit unions. If you’re pressed for time, a loan directly through Subaru Motors Finance (SMF) may be ideal. SMF is done through Chase Bank, which means your vehicle will be financed through Chase if you go directly through an authorized Subaru dealer. You can apply when you pick out your car and drive off the lot the same day — no waiting period required.

  • Financing through SMF. Though rates vary based on where you live and promotions your local dealer is offering, past deals include 0% APR financing on the 2018 Forester, Outback and Impreza.*
  • Leasing through SMF. Leasing is a good choice if you want to switch up your car every few years. You use the car for a set number of years and miles, and then return it at the end of your lease period. It keeps your monthly payments low as well, though you still need to provide a down payment. Past deals include leasing the 2019 Subaru Outback for $285 a month for three years and $1,999 due at signing.*

Your local Subaru dealer may offer its own special promotions, like cashback bonuses or low down payment options. The rates and terms you qualify for will depend on your credit score and personal financial situation.

*Rates as of November 27, 2018.

Read our review of Subaru Motors Finance

Compare car loans for financing a Subaru

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Minimum credit score APR Loan term Requirements
Carvana
No minimum credit score
3.9% to 27.9%
1 to 6 years
18+ years old, annual income of $4,000+, no active bankruptcies
car.Loan.com Car Loans
300
Varies by network lender
Varies by lender
Must be a US citizen with a current US address and employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income.
Apply with a simple online application to get paired with a local auto lender. No credit and bad credit accepted.
CarsDirect auto loans
Varies by network lender
Varies by network lender
Must provide proof of income, proof of residence, and proof of insurance.
Save time and effort with this lending service specializing in beginner-friendly or subprime car loan.
Auto Credit Express Car Loans
300
Varies
Varies
Must be employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income of at least $1,500/month and be a current resident of the US or Canada.
Get connected with an auto lender near you, even if you have bad credit.
Monevo Auto Loans
500
3.99% to 35.99%
3 months to 12 years
Credit score of 500+, legal US resident and ages 18+.
Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit.
LightStream Auto Loans
Good to excellent credit
Competitive
2 to 7 years
Good or excellent credit, enough income or assets to afford a new loan, US citizen or permanent resident, 18+ years old
Quick car loans from $5,000 to $100,000 with competitive rates for borrowers with strong credit.
LendingTree
Good to excellent credit
Starting at 3.09%
Varies by lender
18+ years old, good to excellent credit, US citizen
Compare multiple financing options for auto refinance, new car purchase, used car purchase and lease buy out.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Does Subaru offer special discounts or programs?

Subaru offers a few car-buyer programs for servicemembers, college grads and more.

  • Military Discount Program. Active-duty servicemembers, reservists and recent retirees of the US military are eligible for a $500 discount off the price of your new Subaru.
  • College Graduate Program. Recent and soon-to-be college graduates may be eligible for special financing or leasing promotions if you finance directly through SMF.
  • Lease Loyalty Program. If you’re trading in your current lease for a new Subaru, you may be eligible to have your first monthly payment — no greater than $500 — paid for you on your new lease. Subaru may even pay your disposition fee owed on your current lease.
  • Mobility Assist Program. Subaru may reimburse qualified drivers up to $1,000 if your new car needs modifications for a medically recognized physical disability.
  • Certified Preowned (CPO) Program. Subaru has special financing rates for all CPO models from 2013 to 2018, and there’s no down payment required. However, you’ll still have to meet Subaru’s eligibility criteria to qualify.
  • Guaranteed Trade-In Program (GTP). If you’re looking to upgrade your current Subaru for a newer model, the GTP offers the highest possible trade-in value you can get. You must have owned your current Subaru for at least a year to be eligible, and you need to trade it in within eight years of the vehicle’s original warranty start date.

What will a new Subaru cost me?

The actual cost of your new Subaru will depend on your negotiating skills, where you live and any special promotions you qualify for. However, you can expect a basic trim to run you anywhere from $18,595 to $65,700.

Choose a type

Cars

Impresa

  • Starting MSRP: $18,595
  • Build: Sedan
  • City/highway MPG: 28/38

Legacy

  • Starting MSRP: $22,545
  • Build: Sedan
  • City/highway MPG: 25/34

BRZ

  • Starting MSRP: $25,795
  • Build: Coupe
  • City/highway MPG: 22/30

WRX

  • Starting MSRP: $27,195
  • Build: Sedan
  • City/highway MPG: 21/27

SUVs

Crossteck

  • Starting MSRP: $21,895
  • Build: SUV
  • City/highway MPG: 27/33

Forester

  • Starting MSRP: $24,295
  • Build: SUV
  • City/highway MPG: 26/33

Ascent

  • Starting MSRP: $31,995
  • Build: SUV
  • City/highway MPG: 21/27

Outback

  • Starting MSRP: $65,700
  • Build: SUV
  • City/highway MPG: 25/32

Compare car insurance costs for every Subaru model

Does a new Subaru come with a warranty?

For 2018 and 2019 models, Subaru offers a new vehicle limited warranty that covers your car for three years or 36,000 miles — whichever comes first. There’s also a standard five-year, 60,000-mile powertrain limited warranty that covers your engine and related parts as well as warranties that cover your seat belts, brake pads, wiper blades and clutch linings. In addition to these, Subaru has a standard five-year limited warranty for rust perforation that covers your vehicle in case of corrosion and other rust-related damage.

In order to not be charged for these repairs, you need to bring your car to an authorized Subaru retailer in the US. And unlike many other manufacturers that only cover the first owner of the vehicle, Subaru extends its warranties to every owner during the warranty period.

Bottom line

Although Subarus can be a bit pricier than the competition, you may qualify for one of the brand’s special buyer programs to help bring down the cost. And if you’re buying a certified preowned car directly through Subaru, you may be able to find a car that’s still under warranty. Financing directly through Subaru Motors Finance may be your fastest option, but you could likely find a more competitive rate by comparing car loans from banks and online lenders first.

Learn more about how they work and compare your options with our guide to car loans.

Frequently asked questions

Image source: shutterstock and Subaru’s official page

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