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For some people, having bad credit is a relatively new experience. Unexpected occurrences such as being laid off from a job or medical problems can turn a person's good credit into bad credit if payments are not made in a timely manner. If you are in this position, but still have a home equity account open from when you were able to make your payments without a problem, you may want to consider using the equity line to purchase a car instead of obtaining a new loan. Of course, this tactic must be approached with caution.
If at all possible, you should avoid using credit if you are in the middle of a financial crisis, but for some people it simply isn't an option. Just remember that you are borrowing against the equity in your home. If you can't keep up with the payments, you will lose your house. If you have no other choice than to purchase a car and need to use an existing equity line, you will wind up paying much less in interest than you would with a car loan obtained with bad credit.