certified pre-owned
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Comparing Certified Pre-Owned Programs

When you’re shopping for a used vehicle, you want one that will last and provide years of stress-free transportation. One of the best ways to get into a quality used model with no worries and at a reasonable price is with Certified Pre-Owned vehicles.

What is a Certified Pre-Owned Program?

Pretty much all manufacturers have their own CPO program, which provides requirements for vehicles to be certified and offers benefits for buyers. In general, they provide additional coverage beyond the original warranties along with several other benefits, which vary by manufacturer. Some dealerships add their own benefits on top of what is provided by the manufacturer.

What Requirements Do CPO Programs Have?

As the buyer, you have only one requirement – to choose a CPO model. You can pay cash or get a loan for a vehicle that is certified.

The vehicles must meet certain requirements to be listed as a CPO model. There is usually an age and mileage limit, and they must pass an inspection. The inspection requirements vary by brand. Here are some examples:

  • Acura – 5 years and under with fewer than 80,000 miles and a 182-point inspection
  • Chevrolet/GMC/Buick – 6 years and under with fewer than 75,000 miles and a 172-point inspection
  • Mercedes-Benz – 6 years and under with fewer than 75,000 miles and a 164-point inspection
  • Toyota – 6 years and under with fewer than 85,000 miles and a 174-point inspection

This is just a sample of the restrictions on vehicles to be classified as CPO models.


As listed by NADA Guides, Acura has the top CPO program. This program has one of the most restrictive set of requirements for the vehicle, which provides additional peace of mind. Along with whatever remains of the original warranty, you also get a 12-month/12,000-mile limited warranty for non-powertrain components. Acura’s CPO program includes trip interruption coverage, roadside assistance, rental reimbursement, and Acura Concierge service.


Audi has one of the most stringent inspection requirements in the industry with the 300-point inspection. Vehicles can also only have 60,000 miles maximum to qualify.

Buyers of Audi CPO models get the remainder of the new vehicle warranty and a 2-year/50,000-mile comprehensive warranty with 24-hour roadside assistance.


Buick is another brand that ranks high for its CPO program. Buyers get three warranties with any CPO model they choose. First is the one-year/12,000-mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty. Buick also provides a 6-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty. As a bonus, buyers get two years or 24,000 miles of scheduled maintenance for free. Qualified buyers can receive special financing options as well to make buying a Buick more affordable. This same program includes GMC and Chevrolet models as well.


If you’re in the market for a luxury vehicle but have a limited budget, a CPO model may be the perfect compromise. Mercedes-Benz offers an attractive program to win you over. You’re covered for the remainder of the original warranty with a CPO model and get an additional year with no mileage restrictions. If you’re not happy with your new CPO vehicle, you have seven days or 500 miles to trade it in.


As one of the top manufacturers in the auto industry, it’s no surprise that Toyota also has one of the top CPO programs. When you buy one of these models, you get the remainder of the original warranty and another 12 months or 12,000 miles of coverage. You can also enjoy roadside assistance and trip interruption services with your vehicle.

Choose the Right Certified Pre-Owned Model

If you like the thought of being protected when you buy a used vehicle, the CPO program may be right for you. You’ll want to look at the requirements for the vehicle and the extra coverage and benefits you get to ensure you have peace of mind when you drive off in your quality pre-owned model.


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Joyce Morse Farinella
Hello! My name’s Joyce Morse Farinella and I’m a full-time writer who loves to research interesting and strange topics and explain them to others. I also enjoy hanging out with my daughter and being a foster parent. I love to travel and hang out at home, getting writing inspiration from both."

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