Feb 6 Chrysler Group LLC agreed to make Banco
Santander's U.S. arm its preferred lender for auto loans on
Wednesday, a deal aimed at broadening the financing it can
offer its buyers and dealers.
Chrysler Capital, to be created under a 10-year deal due to
launch on May 1, will include financing for customers with lower
credit scores and subprime borrowers. It will also offer
financing for dealers who want to spiff up their showrooms.
The agreement is expected to help Spain's largest bank gain
visibility in the United States ahead of plans to float its
Dallas-based consumer finance business -- Santander Consumer USA
-- in the second or third quarter.
Chrysler, based in suburban Detroit, is majority owned by
Italy's Fiat SpA. It said its dealers and customers
will continue to work with the automaker's current preferred
auto lender, Ally Financial Inc, at least through the end of
their contact, which expires April 30.
Chrysler also said it expects to continue to work with Ally
beyond the end of April, as well as with other financial
Santander declined to comment on the value of the deal.