Certified Pre-Owned vs. Used Cars: What’s the Difference?

November 3rd, 2021 by

The Pros and Cons of a Certified Pre-Owned vs. Used Vehicle

Once you’ve decided to purchase a used car instead of a brand-new one, there is still one more decision left to make: will it be a certified pre-owned or a used vehicle? Luckily, there’s no wrong answer! Each of these choices has its advantages and disadvantages, and we’ll be comparing certified pre-owned vs. used vehicles to help make your decision as easy as possible. Keep reading to learn more! 

What is a Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle?

A certified pre-owned vehicle (CPO) is a factory-certified car that can only be purchased at a dealership of the same brand. For example, you can only find a certified pre-owned Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, or Ram vehicle at a CDJR dealership like ours. In order to be listed as a certified pre-owned vehicle, the car is rigorously inspected and must pass a series of requirements. These are typically accident-free, gently used, and low-mileage vehicles that are in prime condition and only a few years old.

Click here to view our current inventory of certified pre-owned vehicles!  

What is a Used Vehicle?

Of course, not every vehicle on a dealership’s lot will be certified — and any other car you find is considered a non-certified used vehicle. As the name suggests, a pre-owned vehicle has had previous owners. However, these cars have not gone through the same rigorous inspection that it takes to be certified pre-owned. But don’t worry — when you purchase a used car from M&L, you can rest assured that every vehicle on our lot is reliable and trustworthy. 

Click here to view our current inventory of used vehicles!

Certified Pre-Owned vs. Used Cars: Which Should You Choose?

Now that you know the difference between certified pre-owned vs. used cars, let’s take a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of each.

The Pros and Cons of a Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle

One of the biggest advantages of purchasing a certified pre-owned vs. used vehicle is that it comes with an extended factory warranty. Similar to buying a new car, this means you can have your vehicle repaired at your local dealership free of cost while the warranty is valid. Choosing a certified pre-owned vehicle also allows you to get a low-mileage car that’s only a few years old for less than it would cost to purchase a brand-new car.

When it comes to a CPO vehicle, the standards have been set extremely high. While this is great news, it also means that these cars are typically more expensive and have limited choices. However, although you may have to pay more for a certified pre-owned vs. used vehicle, you can rest assured that you will be getting a thoroughly inspected car that’s in prime condition. Overall, a certified pre-owned vehicle provides an extra level of quality assurance — giving you peace of mind that you’re making the right choice.

The Pros and Cons of a Used Vehicle

Two of the biggest advantages of purchasing a used vehicle are the relatively lower price and additional options. A used car can be hundreds, and sometimes even thousands, of dollars cheaper than a certified vehicle — making it an attractive choice for buyers with a tighter budget. Because certified pre-owned vehicles have to go through such rigorous certification tests, they can be harder to find. You might have an easier time finding a used vehicle, as there are typically more options available.

While there are many reasons to purchase a used vehicle, there are also a few potential disadvantages to consider too. These cars aren’t required to meet the same strict standards that a certified vehicle does, which means you don’t always know what you’re going to get — especially if you’re buying from a private seller. Additionally, used cars don’t come with a warranty. If the manufacturer’s warranty has expired, you will have to pay for any repairs out of your own pocket. 

Related: 5 Tips for Buying a Used Car From a Dealer

Buying a Vehicle From M&L

At the end of the day, the choice between a certified pre-owned vs. used vehicle depends on your personal needs and budget. No matter which one you choose, every vehicle is thoroughly inspected before going on our lot — giving you greater peace of mind. Stop by our dealership or click the button below to contact us and check out our large selection of certified pre-owned and used vehicles.

Posted in Used Cars