Mr. Jones, in Missouri, got his loan from Honda's financing arm, which pools a large portion of its loans into bonds that it sells to investors. A $1.25 billion sale from late 2017 contained more than 7,000 loans tied to 2017 Accords like the one Mr. Jones owns, according to loan-level data.
The investors who hold Mr. Jones's loan are still getting paid because he has remained current. Mr. Jones took on more overtime shifts at the plastic factory where he works as a machine operator. A raise and a bonus helped get him to stable ground. Still, he will be making payments for years to come.
Mr. Jones said he doesn't plan to take out another auto loan soon. "Even just signing the paper, not even driving the car off the lot, suddenly I'm underwater," he said.
--Shane Shifflett contributed to this article.
Corrections & Amplifications
This article was corrected at 5:31 p.m. ET to show that Deven Jones took out a 72-month auto loan in early 2017. The original version incorrectly stated he took an 84-month loan about three years ago.