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What Is the Difference Between Used & Certified Pre-Owned?

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You may be wondering what the difference is between used and certified pre-owned vehicles. While they both refer to vehicles that have been owned before, there are several important differences. We at Shottenkirk Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram understand that there can be some confusion between these two types of cars, so we’ve put together a guide explaining the major differences. Read on to discover whether CPO vs. used cars are right for you – we’ve got everything you need to know. Then, check out our online inventory of used and CPO vehicles!

Used Car Buying: What You Need to Know

Used cars are typically the most affordable option between new, used, and certified pre-owned. They’ve been owned before, so they’ll vary widely in make, model, year, and mileage. Most dealerships have little restrictions on accepting used vehicles (besides the fact that they must work properly and be in good condition), which helps with their affordability. If you’re shopping for a budget-friendly used vehicle in Marietta, be sure to check out our inventory of used vehicles under $10k!

Used cars also vary considerably when it comes to mileage. Because they’ve been previously owned, their mileage can be anywhere up to 100,000 miles or more. While this might sound like a risk you don’t need to take, the truth is plenty of vehicles can have hundreds of thousands of miles put on them and still work perfectly as long as they’ve been regularly serviced.

Be sure to keep the following important facts in mind when shopping for a used car:

  • Most OEMs don’t require that used cars be inspected before being put up at a dealership. However, we at Shottenkirk Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram carefully hand-pick all of our used models to make sure you get the best value for your money.
  • Be careful when buying a used vehicle from a private seller – they don’t have the infrastructure or reputation of an established dealership.
  • Do a quick inspection of the used vehicle before making any commitments to look for issues or imperfections. If you decide to buy the car anyway after noting visible problems, you’ll be liable to pay for repairs yourself.
  • Properly-maintained used vehicles can last upwards of 200,000 miles! Higher-mileage cars are typically the most affordable, so keep this in mind if you’re on a budget.

Buying a CPO Car: What You Need to Know

Although certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles have also been owned previously, they’re a step above the typical used vehicle. CPO vehicles have to go through a rigorous inspection process performed by a team of certified technicians in order to qualify for the title, ensuring that only the highest-quality pre-owned vehicles make the cut. CPO vehicles are considered the gold standard of used cars and are backed by manufacturer warranties that kick in when the previous owner’s standard warranty is up. Here are some typical requirements for CPO models in Woodstock:

  • Model year is within five years of the current model year
  • Generally less than 80,000 miles, sometimes up to 100,000 miles 
  • A multi-point inspection
  • Offered with extended warranties and/or limited powertrain warranties

CPO cars usually have less mileage on them than their used counterparts, because they’re newer models. For this reason, they’re also usually a bit pricier, although they’re still more affordable than buying new.

Shop for Pre-Owned Vehicles at Shottenkirk Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram

Hopefully, the above information clears up any questions you had about CPO vs. used vehicles. If you have any additional questions, feel free to contact our office anytime or stop by our dealership near Roswell!


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