CBA partners with Tesla to support electric vehicle transition

The move supports both retail and business customers

CBA partners with Tesla to support electric vehicle transition


By Ryan Johnson

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has become the preferred finance provider for Tesla Australia, helping customers looking to purchase a Tesla and make the switch to an electric vehicle (EV).

As part of the agreement, CBA’s business and retail customers will be able to access financing through the bank directly from the Tesla website.

Commonwealth Bank said the move would improve the customer experience and expand financing options for customers.

CBA’s offering to retail customers

Tesla customers can apply for a Commonwealth Bank secured personal loan with a fixed, low rate of 5.49%p.a. (Comparison rate 6.92% p.a.).

This interest rate is available to customers who choose to finance eligible sustainable purchases including electric and hybrid vehicles that meet certain criteria and use their vehicle as security.

CBA’s general manager personal lending Joel Larsen (pictured left) said Tesla has proven to be one of the “preeminent” and “hallmark” brands that has propelled the awareness and uptake of EV adoption in Australia.

“Through this latest announcement we can help more customers realise the benefits of electric vehicles by making finance more affordable.”

Since October 2022, the bank has helped retail customers purchase more than $50 million of eligible sustainable products through its personal loans with lower, upfront interest rates.

The appeal of EVs is supported by CBA research which shows 64% of customers would consider buying an electric or hybrid car if there was a financial incentive.

Photo by Craig Adderley

CBA’s offering to business customers

CBA is also offering business customers a way to access the bank's vehicle finance directly on the Tesla website. This includes the option to secure a discounted interest rate exclusively designed for Tesla customers.

New CBA data shows Australian businesses are set to continue playing an outsized role in EV adoption.

According to the research, 40% of companies expect to use EVs or hybrids in the next 6-12 months, up from 14.7%. This is projected to double again in the coming years.

CBA’s general manager asset finance Chris Moldrich (pictured above right) said actual and intended EV adoption trends show an acceleration in business use that’s already far outstripped earlier expectations.

“EV usage is surging as the market matures and becomes more affordable. That’s being helped by government concessions and an expanding choice of vehicles beyond luxury models,” he said.

“Being a preferred finance provider for Tesla means we can provide faster and simpler ways for Australian businesses to access EVs, allowing our customers to improve efficiencies and deliver greater value to their own customers.”

Commonwealth Bank’s record growth in asset finance

The news came after CBA experienced record growth in asset finance, heavily driven by EV financing, which is up 235% in the last financial year.

The increase in electric vehicle adoption is being supported by CommBank's newly launched Green Vehicle and Equipment Finance program.

This program offers discounts of up to 1% off the standard interest rate for new and used electric or hydrogen-powered cars, trucks, vans, and buses.

It also provides discounts of up to 0.5% on other eligible assets, such as electric and hydrogen-powered machinery, as well as equipment related to solar, wind, hydro-power, charging, and storage. These discounts are available for assets valued up to $250,000.

According to the VFACTS National Report, there is a significant surge in the popularity of electric vehicles (EVs), with combined sales of electric cars, SUVs, and light commercial vehicles tripling year-on-year.

As a result, EVs now account for 7.4% of all vehicles sold in the country, a substantial increase from less than 2% in the previous financial year.

“Electric vehicles were the fastest growing vehicle type last financial year and Australian businesses are set to play an outsized role in EV adoption across the country,” Moldrich said.

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