ABN Car Loans

Looking for a business car but don't have all the documents? Apply for an ABN car loan through Savvy today.

Written by 
Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
Our authors
, updated on April 18th, 2024       

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ABN or low doc business car loans provide a convenient, alternative way to apply for vehicle finance when you’re short on up-to-date financial paperwork. Many businesses and sole traders depend on finance for a variety of reasons. However, it can be more challenging to apply for a vehicle loan when your accounts or tax returns aren’t ready or don’t meet lender requirements. That’s where Savvy can help.

We’re partnered with a wide panel of car financiers, including specialist commercial lenders who are ready to work with businesses who may not qualify for a loan with the big banks. You can get started with a free, no-obligation quote through us today!

What are ABN car loans and how do they work?

ABN car loans are a type of low doc car finance whose documentation requirements, as the name suggests, are largely based around the applicant’s Australian Business Number. This means you can apply as a sole trader or a business owner when you don’t otherwise have the documents required to qualify for a standard loan.

In terms of how they work, they’re structured in the same way as a standard car loan or other commercial products like chattel mortgages. The deal is, in most cases, secured by the car you purchase, while the loan can be repaid over between one and seven years (depending on your lender’s term limits). You’ll then repay the loan with interest and fees in instalments over your term.

However, it’s important to note these loans aren’t an option open for those looking to purchase a car for private use, as vehicles bought under this agreement must be used at least 50% of the time for business purposes. Also, not all lenders offer this product, so you’re unlikely to find it when applying through a bank or certain other large lenders.

What are the requirements for an ABN car loan?

To qualify for most commercial car loans, such as chattel mortgages, lenders specify a narrow band of eligibility and documentation requirements. Low doc ABN car loans allow for some wiggle room, so while criteria can vary between financiers, you’ll likely need to meet the following points:

  • At least 18 years old
  • Hold Australian citizenship or permanent residency
  • Have an ABN registered in your name
  • Have a business which has been running for a certain period (generally between one and two years)
  • Have your business registered for GST
  • Meet commercial car usage requirements (at least 50% of all usage)

The documentation you’ll need to submit will also vary depending on your lender and individual situation, but it’ll likely be a combination of some of the following:

  • A current ABN
  • Identification, typically a driver’s licence
  • Recent Business Activity Statements (BAS), which some lenders will accept from the previous financial year
  • Information on business assets (such as equipment or property), liabilities (such as other loans) and expenses (regular running costs)
  • Business bank statements
  • A business plan (which outlines information such as revenue projections)
  • Information about your personal financial situation (such as bank statements, assets and liabilities)

Even if you don’t have much in the way of business documentation, you can speak to one of Savvy’s expert consultants to see whether we can help you get approved through one of our flexible lending partners.

How much will my ABN car loan cost?

The cost of your ABN car loan will be determined by a variety of factors, including the following:

  • Interest rate: because ABN car finance is considered a higher risk than other loan types (due to the lesser documentation requirements), it typically comes with higher rates. The higher the rate, the more you’ll pay overall.
  • Fees: additionally, you’ll likely have to pay fees on your loan agreement, such as establishment and ongoing charges.
  • Loan amount: interest is calculated based on the outstanding loan balance, so the more you borrow, the more interest you’ll pay.
  • Loan term: longer loan terms will also lead to higher interest, as your outstanding balance will fall at a slower rate.
  • Additional repayments: if you choose to make additional payments above the minimum required, you could save on your loan (subject to break fees).

The following table shows how different interest rates can impact the cost of your commercial car loan:

Loan size 7.00% p.a. 8.00% p.a. 9.00% p.a. 10.00% p.a.

Source: Car Finance with Instant Approval Online – Savvy. Repayments are calculated based on a five-year term and monthly instalments.

Balloon payments: how do they work?

A balloon or residual payment is a lump sum added to the end of your loan. You’re required to pay this upon the completion of your loan’s instalments. The main benefit of balloon payments is that they reduce your ongoing loan payments. However, they also increase the interest you’ll pay, as the table below demonstrates:

Balloon payment Repayments Total interest Total saving

Source: How to Pay Off Your Car Loan Faster – Savvy. Calculations based on a $30,000 car loan repaid monthly over five years with a 7.50% p.a. interest rate.

Because of this, it’s important to consider whether it’s more important for you to pay less month-to-month and more overall or vice versa.

What are the benefits of ABN car loans?

There’s a range of benefits to consider when applying for an ABN car loan. These include:

  • Tax-deductible: as a business product, you can claim a range of expenses as a tax deduction. These include the interest on your loan, GST on the purchase price and depreciation of the vehicle, though these can only be claimed for the business portion of its usage.
  • Repayment flexibility: you can take between one and seven years to repay your loan, while some lenders will enable you to make free additional repayments.
  • Borrow up to 100% of the car’s value: if you prove your business can support the repayments, you can get approved for your car’s full purchase price.
  • Broader lending criteria: your business may be able to qualify for ABN car finance if other options aren’t available.

However, it’s important to be mindful of some of the potential drawbacks. As mentioned, because this loan is considered higher risk, you may be required to pay more in interest and fees, while it simply may not be the best available option for you.

If your personal profile is stronger than that of your business and you think the usage will be about 50/50, you may also be able to apply for a standard car loan and still claim the business portion of the usage. If you’re unsure what the best option for you is, you can speak with a Savvy consultant today.

Why choose Savvy for your car loan?

How to apply for an ABN car loan with Savvy

Your commonly asked car loans questions answered

Can I buy new and second-hand vehicles with an ABN car loan?

Yes – you can buy both new and used vehicles with an ABN car loan and from private or commercial vendors.

How long do I need to be trading to get an ABN car loan?

Many car loan lenders will require you to have an ABN that has been active for at least two years. However, Savvy partners with flexible lenders, some of whom are willing to consider an ABN active for one year. For start-ups who aren’t able to provide this, some of our lenders can accept future financial forecasting instead.

Can I get a low doc car loan if my ABN has been active for years, but I’ve just started trading?

Usually not – low doc car finance is designed for businesses with a history of sales. It could be that their financials don’t represent their current revenue, for instance, but it’s unlikely they’d qualify for a car loan if the business were brand new. However, as mentioned, some lenders may be willing to accept strong revenue forecasts in place of these requirements.

What are the insurance requirements with an ABN car loan?

Just like with most forms of vehicle finance, you’ll need to put a comprehensive car insurance policy in place, so it’s essential to budget for that from the outset.

How do I compare my car loans options?

Most ABN car loans operate according to the same structure, based on a chattel mortgage product. The key to getting the most cost-effective option is canvassing a wide variety of lenders for quotes and choosing the ones with favourable qualification requirements. In general, though, you should look at comparing fees and interest rates and the advantages of different features like balloon payments and deposit options.

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