How the credit crisis affects you: Good luck getting a car loan

It's a brand new world out there. Time was, just a few short years ago, getting a loan for a brand new car was just about as easy as showing up and filling out the paperwork. The banks, flush with all that mortgage money, didn't mind taking a risk on small change like auto loans. Indeed, it was almost as easy as getting a mortgage.

No longer. Now that the banks are in crisis mode, getting a car loan has become something to sweat over, especially if your credit is less than sterling.

According to a blog called Kicking Tires, dealers around the country are reporting that dramatically fewer people qualify for a car loan, and even those few with excellent credit are finding the interest rates of the loans they qualify for are higher than they expected.