Not to be rude? You were all the way rude. I know that i have bad credit and i dont blame them for my bad credit. I am simply here for advice! I am trying to clean up my credit now that is all that matters right. Your advice was not helpful because all i could read was how harsh you were sounding the whole time. The truth hurts but i already know the truth and i am paying for it. Ain't that why we are all here to get help on our credit journey?
Your title states "Horrible experience with Santander Consumer USA" and asked if anyone has dealt with this company, you never stated an exact experience with Santander that was horrible other than the interest rate and interest charges. In my reply I explained what LTV stood for and also gave advice to look at NADA values and how to compute LTV as well as acceptable LTV limits for lender's in reference to your possible ability to refinance.
Rather than making a post with a misleading title blasting a company that gave you a chance, you should have reworded it in reflection of your actual question which was in reference to refinancing and how to get out from underneath a high interest auto loan.
I honestly didn't think I was rude and I am sorry that you took it that way. I was simply justifying their lending habit's, love them or hate them, Santander helps alot of people in unfortunate situation's and credit histories, purchase a vehicle...albeit under less than perfect terms in regard to high interest.
If you want to help yourself out of the situation I would suggest the following:
Pull NADA retail/clean trade values on your vehicle using the exact model/year/trim/mileage/options etc.
Pull your 3 CB's and pay close attention to auto-enhanced scores across the board, as well as look through your CR to see why your scores are low and what's holding them down (ie: collections, charge-off's, late payments, etc)
Clean up your credit bureau (which as I am posting this I have no information on scores/tradelines, etc so I am merely guessing)
Open up Secured credit cards and work on building a little history and boosting scores into the 630+ range
Pay additional per payment towards principal and whenever you have free cash, such as tax returns, put as much as you can towards the loan while retaining an emergency savings fund of atleast 3-6 months.
Once your scores are higher and your LTV is around 100-110% of clean trade, try refinancing with Capital One or one of those excellent credit union's commonly mentioned on this forum such as NFCU, PenFed, DCU, ETC.
You will have to check your original retail installment contract to make sure there are no pre-payment penalties and that it is a simple interest loan. There should be a pre-payment section on the contract that outlines those details. I would be willing to bet that there are no pre-payment penalties and you should be fine as most of Santander's loans are that way but it is always best to check before hand.
When you are ready to make a large payment on it, I would send in a check or money order with a memo on the check that states, to be applied directly to principle. Or you may call over the phone and do so but they will charge you a fee for paying over the phone I bet (usually 5-10 dollars)
I would pay as much as you can towards the principle by making larger payments/extra payments and when you come into lump sums of money (tax return) pay as much as you can and get the balance down. In addition, I would definately pull your CB's and see what you can do to boost your credit scores asap, wether it's cleaning up past blemishes, or taking out new credit such as CC's to boost score, or paying off CC's that hold high utilizations. Once scores are up and the balance is down, then seek refinancing by a credit union once you are in a good position in terms of LTV and credit scoring.