Stellantis F&I Offices Using Captive Finance More Often, Says Report

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
stellantis f i offices using captive finance more often says report

The byzantine House of Stellantis rolled out its own captive finance arm just over a year ago, seeking to pocket some of those sweet loan profits which were flowing out the door whilst the company attempted to rebuild itself following a sojourn through bankruptcy and an embarrassing parade of suitors.

Now, it seems approximately two-thirds of Stellantis dealers in this country are using the captive lender – after, of course, the sales staff pencils a healthy leg in the four-square prior to stuffing them in The Box.

According to Automotive News [ link], about 1,600 out of the company’s 2,600 dealers have begun using Stellantis Financial Services over the past year. Speaking with finance clerks (yes, I’m using that title intentionally because it deeply annoys those in an F&I office at a dealership) at a sampling of Stellantis dealers, AN learned the captive finance arm was apt to quickly respond to credit apps and is receptive to follow up from the finance clerk, calls made presumably between their swigs of Monster energy drinks and leering at the new receptionist.

Stellantis Financial Services got its start after a gestation period following the company’s acquisition of F1 Holdings Corp last November. Alert readers will remember that outfit was the parent company of First Investors Financial Services Group and cost Stellantis about $285 million to buy. With scads of money and profit available to be earned through financing their own deals, Stellantis could recoup that cost in a relatively reasonable amount of time – if they’re smart.

And, by all accounts, they are. Dealers to whom AN spoke for their story said Stellantis Financial is “well organized” and praised its rollout strategy which apparently allowed the burgeoning lender to find its feet instead of biting off more than it can chew. After all, there is potential for the outfit to grow into a large captive, the type of lender which can buy ample amounts of paper and use that leverage to offer attractive terms. Those terms could be more than just low rates for the customer, of course, including but not limited to incentives given to dealers for using their services. Whether that takes the form of a finance reserve or sliding buy rates or a simple commission will likely never be known to the customer.

Through the end of Q3 this year, Stellantis has sold 1,199,407 units which is a 12 percent decrease compared to the same timeframe twelve months ago. 

[Image: Dodge]

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2 of 7 comments
  • Jalop1991 Jalop1991 on Dec 19, 2022

    Whatever. In April 2021, Chrysler Capital (before Stellantis Financial) wanted me for a customer badly enough that they gave me both the cash on the hood ($7500) AND zero percent financing. (You shoulda seen the look on the sales manager's face when I showed him my FICO score--he quietly picked up his "so yer buyin' a pickemup and need to borrow $70K? that'll be 9.34%" standard foursquare paperwork, went into the back, and in ten minutes came back with this offer. Sold.)

    I don't ask questions. Maybe they need some stellar customers on their books to keep the government gremlins away. Who knows.

  • DRFNW DRFNW on Dec 20, 2022

    I am OK with this if the captive lender meets or beats what I can arrange on my own. Yes, one does need to do their homework--but that is true of every facet of a major purchase like a vehicle.

    Example 1: my grown son just paid off his Verano. Bought new with a discount, GM rebate and 0.9%/60 month. That was a deal at the time (pre Covid).

    Example 2: I bought a new Alfa at the end of September. Alfa was using Ally at that time, but offering 1.9%/72 month on top of some customer cash. I checked multiple credit unions, there were no other deals out there even approaching this.

    Example 3: Talked to a friend in the car business. At times, GM has extra rebate when financing through Ally. Make one payment then either pay off or refi with your preferred lender.

    Frankly, if the dealer made out on any or all of those situations--I am fine with that. A win-win is still a win.

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