Thinking of getting a car loan from Mach by Hong Leong? Here’s my personal review and opinion of this “extraordinary” bank.
Due to Malaysia’s under-developed public transportation systems, you’ll need a car to get to almost anywhere. I’ve recently returned to Malaysia after being away for more than 10 years. Since I need to get a car like everyone else, I decided to try online to search for a suitable car loan in Malaysia.
After doing a simple Google search, the car loan offered by Hong Leong appeared on top of the first page. It was called Cruise Control. Submitting your enquiry was easy, simply enter your name and answer some basic questions like how much do you plan to borrow etc.
A few days later I was contacted by one of their staff from Mach by Hong Leong’s branch in Sunway Giza. Miss Y, sent me some documents explaining how their product is different from other banks. I replied to her email asking if I can meet her in person and she agreed.
Mach by Hong Leong is probably developed and designed for Generation Y. The inside looks cosy, cool and modern. It makes you feel like keeping your money with them (cough, cough)
Miss Y took the time explaining about their product ‘Cruise Control’ and how it can help you own your car faster. In short, it was like a home loan. I provided the usual documents – a copy of my identity card, driving license, 6 months bank statement and proof of income.
About a week later, I was told by Miss Y that my application was rejected. She can help me to appeal but I must provide a guarantor. One of my cousins agreed to help (thanks bro, if you’re reading this!).
A few days later, they called again asking why my cousin is a Muslim and how do I relate to him. Wow, for a moment there I thought to myself – are the bank officers working in Hong Leong from Malaysia? In order to convince them I was asked to write a letter to explain why do I have a Muslim cousin. I still couldn’t believe someone would actually ask this type of question. Is this a typical question asked by bank officers?
The next supporting document they asked from me was my birth certificate. To be honest, I’ve never heard of banks requiring someone to produce a birth certificate for a loan application. Since I was away that time, I had to call my dad and asked him to fax a copy of to Miss Y.
If that’s not enough, they also asked me to provide my landline or office number. Since I’m working from home I guess that would be a reasonable request. However, they said someone must be readily available to pick up the phone at ANY time. What if I’m away or I have to run errands? Surely I can’t stand next to the home office phone 24 hours a day.
To cut the story short, the car loan application was rejected because my guarantor isn’t an immediate family member and my business isn’t well established. Unfortunately, this wasn’t mentioned when they asked me to provide a guarantor.
I was very disappointed with the whole experience. The only plus side is Miss Y, who has helped me appeal many times. It was the loan officers who gave me the worst impression of Hong Leong bank. Cruise Control? Think about it before you apply. They’re not the only bank in Malaysia.
Another bank has approved my car loan and I’m happily driving the car right now.