The millennial generation, traditionally considered a hard sell in the auto industry, is actually the fastest growing category of auto loan consumers, Jason Laky, senior vice president and automotive business leader for TransUnion, told Auto Finance News.
Millennials represented 27% of total auto loan originations in 2014, up from 16% in 2009, according to TransUnion’s latest research, and millennials’ total outstanding auto balances increased 23% in the past year: the highest of any age group.
“It represents what we think is the millennial generation kind of coming into its own, and starting to look like some of the other generations ahead of them, in terms of auto ownership,” Laky said. “Some of the things that are going on with the millennial generation have created a massive change in behavior. We’ve come out of the recession and millennials are starting to get employed, find job stability, settle into marriage and family, and they’re realizing that you still need to have a car in your life.”
Nationwide, total auto loan accounts reached 64.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2014, up from 64.2 in 3Q14, according to TransUnion, while new originations rose to 7 million in 4Q14, up from 6.93 million in the previous quarter. Growth was reflected across all credit tiers, Laky said.