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Auto loans hit nearly $1 trillion

Near record high auto sales, rising prices on new vehicles and low interest rates have combined to help Americans take out almost a trillion dollars in auto loans.

Experian Automotive, which tracks auto financing and vehicle purchases, says American's borrowed a record amount in the second quarter, bringing totals to $932 billion.

"The automotive loan market is gaining momentum while maintaining remarkable stability. It's a good sign for the economy overall," said Melinda Zabritski, Experian's senior director of automotive finance.

Buying a car
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In the second quarter, Experian said auto loans increased $92 billion versus the same time a year ago.

It is the largest increase in dollars borrowed for any quarter since 2006.

Spring is typically when the pace of auto sales pick up, and between March and June of this year, monthly sales rates topped 17 million vehicles twice.


Overall, U.S. auto sales are on pace to total 17.26 million vehicles on average per month this year.

Meanwhile, the average transaction price or the amount paid at dealerships in July was $31,691 according to auto pricing website TrueCar.

Who's borrowing and just as importantly, are those who are taking out auto loans making their payments?


Experian says those with subprime or deep subprime credit scores, borrowed just over 20 percent of the money loaned in the second quarter. Meanwhile, those with super prime credit ratings also held a little over 20 percent of the open auto loans in the second quarter.

The latest report on auto financing found little change in the percentage of loans that went unpaid.

Experian says 30-day delinquencies edged slightly lower to 2.32 percent of all open auto loans, while 60-day delinquencies ticked up fractional to 0.603 percent of all loans.

Questions? Comments? BehindTheWheel@cnbc.com.