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I am sorry to read about your situation. Unfortunately the ability to repossess a vehicle requires a formal loan document that actually reserves this right. (This is one of the reasons why private sales of automobiles are recommended to be "cash only").
However, just because you cannot repossess the auto does not mean you are without recourse. (Repossession is just the quick extrajudicial remedy).
You can still sue your girlfriend for breach of your oral contract - if the loan was for less than $10,000.00 you can use small claims court (see: https://www.depts.ttu.edu/sls/forms/How-to-Sue-in-Small-Claims-Court.pdf)
If the amount exceeded $10,000.00 you will need to sue in general civil court (the ideais roughly the same, but the details and procedure are more complicated). http://www.collincountytx.gov/law_library/documents/tx_civil_litigation_steps.pdf
These are going to be evidence in support of your oral contract (if you wait so long that the statute of limitations becomes an issue, you can argue that perhaps this is now a written contract and therefore the longer statute applies, but I don't recommend delyaing).
However, with regard to repossession, the information required to be in that particular contract is very detailed and specific - simply having a written loan agreement is not going to be sufficient.