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Best vehicle finance*

Need to finance your vehicle? How to find the best vehicle finance* for you.

Payday loans are expensive forms of credit and shouldn’t be used to fix long-term financial issues. People should avoid payday loans if it will put their budget under strain, as late fees for payday loans can build up quickly and result in debt.

Buying a car brings with it a number of decisions, but one of the most important ones is your finance. If you’ve decided to get vehicle finance it’s important to find the most competitive and suitable product for you. That is, you want to find the best car loan.

This guide will take you through all of the features and costs you need to consider when sorting through your car finance options so you can be confident when making your decision.

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What’s the best vehicle finance for me?

In truth, there is no one best vehicle finance deal. This is because not everyone looking for car finance is buying the same car, earns the same income or is in the same financial situation. The best car finance really depends on what you need from your loan, what loan you’re eligible for and what will work well for your budget and lifestyle. However, you may be able to find the best vehicle finance for your individual situation by comparing your options and considering your own needs.

Quick guide to how vehicle finance work

Vehicle finance works in a similar way as other secured personal loans, in that the vehicle you’re purchasing is typically used as collateral for the loan. This is why vehicle finance often comes with some competitive rates of interest, as there’s less risk from the lender’s point of view.

Vehicle finance can be offered as a dealership finance loan or as a loan from a bank, financial company or standalone lender. The type of loan you are eligible for will depend on whether the car is new or used, how much the car is worth as well as your own credit history and financial situation.

How do you find the best vehicle finance deals?

Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re comparing your vehicle finance options – this will help you settle for the best loan for your needs.

  • How much does the loan cost? You need to consider the interest rate and loan tenure when asking this question. Vehicle finance in South Africa are often calculated on a ‘fixed’ interest rate, meaning that your monthly interest and instalments are constant throughout the entire loan tenure. That said, some finance plans will include a ‘balloon payment‘, which is one large payment that’s due at the end of your loan term following a run of smaller monthly repayments.
  • Are the repayments flexible? See if you will be able to repay your car loan early without penalty or if you will be able to make additional repayments without being charged a fee.
  • What are your loan terms? Vehicle finance terms are generally offered for up to around 7 years. The length of time you take out vehicle finance for can affect your loan repayments and therefore the loan affordability, so make sure you factor this in.
  • Is your car eligible? Can you actually finance the car you want with this loan? Some lenders have restrictions on the age of the vehicle or the type of vehicle, so ensure you’ll be able to purchase the car you want before you apply.
  • What is the type of loan? It’s a good idea to be aware of all the different types of car loans which are available in South Africa. This includes: a new or used car loan; in-house financing, or balloon scheme financing. The category type your loan falls under will help you compare it to other similar loan products.

Have you weighed up the pros and cons of vehicle finance?


  • There are various lenders in South Africa, so you do have options to choose from
  • Set fees and repayments help you to budget your repayments with fixed rates


  • Depending on the lender, your car loan might have various restrictions and penalties on early repayment
  • If the car loan is a balloon scheme, then you may find that you are paying much more overall

Found a great vehicle finance deal for your situation? Here’s what you could need to apply

The type of information you will need to provide usually depends on the lender and the type of loan you have chosen. As a minimum, you’ll generally need to provide:

  • Smart ID card / Passport
  • Details of your finances including credit, debt and assets
  • Proof of your income
  • Vehicle registration card
  • Details about the car (if you’ve found it) including make, model and year

If you can, try to check with your lender before you submit your application to help you avoid a loan rejection.

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