Archive for the 'auto' Category

Spin to Win

American 1 is still offering 1.99%APR* and up to $250 cash back+. American 1 wants to give you even more this Spring. That’s why when you close an auto loan with American 1 in the month of April, you can Spin to Win! Spin the wheel to get even more cash back.

You could DOUBLE you cash back reward giving you the chance to receive up to $500 cash back!+


*Annual percentage rates (APR) listed are “as low as” based on credit score and term, and are subject to approval. +See branch for details. Federally insured by NCUA.

Great Rates, Quality Products and Cash Back = The Best Way to Bank

Rates as low as 1.99%* combined with quality insurance products AND an instant cash back bonus? That’s the American 1 way.  Not only do you have access to American 1’s auto loan expertise, we are here to educate you about how auto loan financing works when you do on the spot financing at the dealership.

Cash back to our members – not the dealerships.

Many banks, finance companies, and even credit unions will pay a dealership for your loan.  Not American 1. We want to give that cash back to our members.  That’s why when you finance a loan with American 1 in the month of April- we will offer you an instant cash bonus*!

Get pre-approved and avoid the high rates!

Be prepared when you go shopping and have an American 1 pre-approval already in place.  This will help protect you against high interest rates that the financial institutions working with the dealerships offer. Why do they hike up the rates?  Simple – the bankers had to pay the dealership for your loan.

Pricey Insurance Products vs. Quality Product Protection

Did you know that GAP protection at a dealership can cost nearly double what it does at American 1? Not only is it more expensive at the dealerships, but American 1 offers an added benefit of a $1,000 credit toward your next vehicle purchase if your vehicle is deemed beyond repair.  American 1 also offers life insurance coverage up to the age of 75 and disability coverage up to the age of 68.  This is several years longer than our competition and American 1 exclusively offers this amazing product enhancement. American 1 is dedicated to protecting our membership at reasonable rates with quality products.

Refinance Opportunity

Already have your financing with another bank or credit union?  No worries!  You can refinance with American 1, lower your monthly payment, take advantage of quality insurance products and collect your cash reward.

Avoid the frustration and get the low rates, quality products and instant cash back that you deserve. When you do the math, American 1 is truly the best way to bank.

*See branch for details

Nothing But Sunshine In April


April is the month for a Low APR and a Rebate

April may bring showers, but not at American 1. Here, new and existing members are seeing nothing but sunshine as they come in for a new secured, closed-end loan through the end of April. This is because American 1 is raising the umbrella over members with a 1.99% APR* for qualifying applicants. Members will also receive 50% of the interest they pay through the end of the year back as a warming gift come January.

So if you’re looking for a new vehicle or are patiently waiting for warm weather to arrive so you can get an ATV or Jet Ski, then we’ve got you covered. Just come in and talk with one of our Member Service Specialists to apply for a new secured, closed-end loan.

Not to be outdone, we also want to help our members who have high interest rates and fees on their credit cards. If you transfer at least $500 to our local and affordable American 1 Visa, you will be entered to win $1,000. You will get one entry for every $500 that you transfer no matter how large your transfer is! Want to transfer $2,000? That’s okay! You will then have 4 entries into our drawing.

Now members can enjoy great rates and competitive rebates while supporting their community. What better time is there to become a member?

1.99% Annual Percentage Rate (APR) listed is based on credit score and term, and subject to approval. See any branch for details.

Save (virtually) nothing with Bank of America’s auto loan

Susan Tompor had a great article in the Detroit Free Press about banks getting back into the auto lending business. She noted that Bank of America was offering a stellar-sounding rate on vehicles:

Bank of America has a low rate of 2.89% in Michigan on new car loans of up to 60 months. The loan has a $200 fee and the borrower must have excellent credit.

Now, that 2.89% “low” rate does sound great. But how does the math work?

Here’s an example. Let’s say we take a plain old car loan, with no money down and no trade-in, for $20,000. Pay Bank of America’s $200 fee and the rate, and you end up with a monthly payment of $383.38. In the end, you’ll pay $21,400 for that new car when the loan is paid off (we’re using our handy auto loan calculator for these numbers).

Now, take that same $20,000 auto loan to American 1, where you pay no fees but you pay a slightly higher interest rate of 3.49% at our low end. That leads to a montly payment of $385.57 – two whole dollars more expensive than BoA’s payment. In the end? You’ll pay $21,200 for that vehicle, which is exactly $200 – or the cost of that BoA fee – less in total.

Isn’t that something?

Tompor quotes a BoA representative who sounds giddy to get back into auto lending:

Doug Melton, direct-to-consumer underwriting manager for Bank of America, said the bank is optimistic about car lending in 2011 and is aiming to offer competitive rates for loans on new and used vehicles and lease buyouts.

“There are a lot of great customers out there looking for new cars, used cars and looking for financing,” he said.

“Competitive” being the operative word. The most you’ll save is $2 a month, no matter how competitive that rate looks compared with ours or anyone else’s.

Isn’t it better to do business with a local institution who charges no fees and is a phone call away when you need service?

MBP adds ‘copper’ warranty plan for older vehicles

Good news: American 1’s Mechanical Breakdown Protection (MBP) warranty is adding coverage for vehicles up to 15 years, thanks to the new Copper plan.

This means that vehicles between 10 and 15 years old (which, today, covers vehicles from 1997) can get all the benefits of a quality, top-notch warranty.

The only restrictions on our new Copper MBP plan is the age of the vehicle. That means if your manufacturer’s warranty has run out, or even if you don’t have the vehicle financed with American 1, you can still get warranty protection on your vehicle.

We have two options: a two-year plan and a three-year plan, but even if those run out and your car is younger than 15 years, you can re-up the MBP Copper plan. Check out our MBP brochure to see what the Copper plan covers (it’s quite a bit!).

The same company that covers our other levels of vehicle warranty, Mercury, is launching this Copper coverage, so you know your protection is backed up by a reputable company.

More and more Americans are keeping their vehicles longer, and the older a vehicle the more llikely it will need repairs. That’s what makes this new level of coverage so exciting.

Stop in to any American 1 branch to talk about our new Copper plan for MBP.

$1000 holiday cash winner

Congratulations to Wendy Shaw of Jackson – she was our $1,000 holiday cash winner from our Winter Vehicle Sale.

Wendy financed a Ford Freestyle at the sale. “We like the van even better now,” her husband Fred said.

And indeed, Wendy couldn’t believe she was the winner when we called. But now that she has that extra $1,000, she’s using it all to go Christmas shopping for her five grandkids.

Congratulations Wendy!

News from the August car sale

August Sale - Sunny lot

Check out pictures from our August car sale at the Jackson County Fairgrounds. For once, the weather cooperated and we had a nice weekend.

August Sale - Karen Baker

Also, congratulations to Karen Baker of Jackson – our $1,000 shopping spree winner from the sale. Karen purchased a Chevy Impala at the sale (“It rides like a dream,” she says), and opted for $500 in Walmart gift cards, $250 in Jackson Crossing gift cards, and $250 to the Westwood Mall.

American 1’s classic car photo contest

If you fancy yourself a classic car collector, or just have fond memories of that ’57 Chevy you used to cruise down Michigan Ave., we want to see what kind of classic car you had or have.

We’re offering a full car detail package for one random photo. To enter to win, simply e-mail us, or drop off a copy at any branch, a photo of you and your classic car along with:

  • Your name and place of residence
  • Which classic car is in the photo
  • The story behind your classic car

We’ll post all the entries to this blog post and then draw a winner at the end of September.

What defines a classic car? We’re not picky. And it doesn’t have to be a photo from the year you first got it. If you take your classic hot rod down to Jackson’s Cruise Night, you can snap a photo from today and share that. The only stipulation is the car in the photo has to be a generally-defined classic car.

Detroit News: Used car prices rise with demand

The Detroit News reports that with a shrinking supply and a rising demand, used vehicle prices are higher than they have been:

Supply is down because “cash for clunkers” required old vehicles to be destroyed, rather than allowing them to be resold. In addition, fewer leased vehicles are being turned in and available for sale because automakers all but abandoned leasing during the industry collapse of 2008 and 2009.

Demand, meanwhile, is up as some cautious consumers choose to buy used cars, rather than expensive new ones.

As demand goes up, so do the prices – as much as 14% for SUVs and 16% for luxury cars, the Detroit News reports.

Enjoy a free root beer float on us

Free root beer floats!

As a treat, we’re giving away free root beer floats to anyone who stops into our branches during September.

We’re celebrating America’s car culture all month long, and the auto loan experts at American 1 are going to try out hands at being root beer float experts. We’ll see how it goes.

Stop by these branches for your free treat:

  • North St.: Thursday, Sept. 9, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., 3-5 p.m.
  • Grass Lake: Thursday, Sept. 9, 3-5 p.m.
  • Vandercook: Thursday, Sept. 9, 2-5 p.m.
  • Home Office: Friday, Sept. 10, 10 a.m. – noon, 2-4 p.m.
  • Battle Creek: Friday, Sept. 10, 2-4 p.m.
  • Hillsdale: Thursday, Sept. 16, 2-4 p.m.
  • Parnall: Friday, Sept. 17, 2-4 p.m.
  • Brooklyn: Friday, Sept. 17, 3-5 p.m.
  • Chelsea: Friday, Sept. 10, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

When you’re at the branch, be sure to vote for your favorite car company, and get pre-approved for our payment-free auto loan promotion!

American 1 Federal Credit Union