Both Hyundai Motor Finance and Kia Motors Finance plan to offer free FICO scores to customers that qualify for their College Grad finance programs starting today.

Know Your FICO Score - For Free?

Automakers Finance Offer Free FICO Scores to Borrowers

Here at Auto Credit Express we realize the importance of knowing at least one FICO score, especially if your overall credit is less than perfect or shopping for a bad credit car loan. We say this even though we realize that most consumers will have to pay a fee to see what theirs is.

Which is why, earlier today, we were pleasantly surprised when we found out that Hyundai Capital America, which does business as both Hyundai Motor Finance (HMF) and Kia Motors Finance (KMF), is partnering with FICO to provide free FICO Scores to some of its finance customers.

Free FICO Scores Through Hyundai and Kia

According to Hyundai Capital America, starting today, customers enrolling in the new 2014 "College Grad" programs from either HMF or KMF will start receiving free FICO Scores every quarter, beginning this fall.

The press release goes on to state that, "In addition to receiving their FICO® Scores, HMF and KMF customers also will be given on-line access through the respective websites to tools to help them understand and track their FICO® Scores. These tools will include the top two factors currently affecting the customers' individual FICO® Scores, as well as provide educational content to help customers understand their credit score."

Other aspects of the program may include such spiffs as 90 days before the first payment is due and an additional $400 rebate on top of other rebates offered for specific models.

Eligibility for the program includes providing a Hyundai or Kia dealer with:

  • A copy of their diploma or a letter from the registrar's office stating that you graduated or will graduate
  • Proof of employment, such as a pay stub, or an offer letter from a prospective employer. Hyundai Motor Finance or Kia Motors Finance must deem the salary sufficient to cover living expenses and vehicle payments.

Fine for College Grads - Not So Much Everyone Else

As great as these College Grad programs are, it's still very limited and probably won't apply to most consumers with less than perfect credit – those buyers with the greatest need for this type of service.

Specifically, in order to qualify for the program borrowers "need to be within 6 months of graduating or have graduated within the past 24 months from an accredited 2 or 4 year college or university, nursing school, or master's or doctorate program."

Now only is that a very narrow group of borrowers, nowhere in the explanation does it state the range of credit scores the program encompasses.

The Bottom Line

The latest program from both Hyundai and Kia is certainly a step in the right direction by offering free, updated FICO scores to borrowers. Unfortunately for most credit-challenged car buyers, not only is its focus too narrow, what's left unsaid is the minimum credit score or profile required to qualify for it.

But for those who clearly don't meet these requirements, we want you to know that Auto Credit Express works with problem credit car shoppers to match them up with dealers finance bad credit and can offer them their best opportunities for auto loan approvals.

So if you're ready to take the first step, you can begin the process by filling out our online car loan application.