Whether you’re shopping with a local dealer or are browsing online, you may have wondered what the difference is between certified pre-owned and regular used vehicles. While it’s true that shopping used cars for sale is one of the best ways to cut down on your automotive costs, not knowing the difference between your options could make the car buying process more stressful than it needs to be.
Certified pre-owned models are unique in that they aim to give you greater peace of mind during the car buying process. But exactly how do these vehicles differ from regular used cars for sale and what are the pros and cons of each? Let’s take a closer look and go over things you need to know when you shop for used cars for sale.
Pros: Get Peace of Mind When You Shop Certified Pre-owned
The biggest advantage of certified pre-owned vehicles is that they undergo a rigorous multi-point inspection to ensure they’re up to the standards of the automaker. As a buyer, this means you can count on a CPO vehicle being a reliable purchase. Still, that’s not to say that some non-certified used vehicles are not reliable.
Con: CPO Vehicles Cost More Than Used Cars
The extra piece of mind you get when you shop CPO vehicles does come at a cost, literally. Certified pre-owned vehicles cost 2% – 10% more than used vehicles. For some car buyers, this price difference could be a determining factor in whether they shop certified pre-owned cars or used cars for sale
Pro: CPO Vehicles Enjoy Factory Warranty Protections
Another benefit you’ll get to enjoy when you shop certified pre-owned vehicles is factory warranty protection. CPO vehicles will typically still be covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Additionally, dealers may offer their own warranty protections as well.
Con: Used Vehicles May Have Limited or No Warranty Coverage
On the flip side, non-certified used vehicles are typically sold as is. Depending on when you buy the used vehicle, you may still be able to take advantage of a transferable warranty, but this is not always the case. It’s important to know that when you buy used, you may also have the option of buying additional warranty coverage from the dealer. However, it largely depends on the type of vehicle you’re purchasing and where you’re purchasing it from.
Pro: You’ll Have More Options When You Shop Used Cars
One benefit of shopping used is the reality that you’ll have more options to look through than if you were to shop certified pre-owned. You can certainly turn to your dealership and start there but you’ll also be able to shop online and with private sellers. If you know a thing or two about cars, are a mechanic, or have a trusted mechanic that you can bring along with you, you can have a higher chance of finding a reliable used vehicle that’s not certified pre-owned.
Con: A CPO Vehicle Is Still a Used Car
While certified pre-owned vehicles come with the protection of a rigorous inspection, warranty coverage, and other benefits, the reality is CPO vehicles are still used vehicles. You can’t have the guarantee that it won’t break down on you or require critical repairs in the future.
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