2010 Toyota Matrix
My daughter was surprised. She had asked for help in choosing a used SUV and I recommended that she and her husband look at a certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicle. “But Dad,” she said, “you literally wrote the books on how to buy and sell used cars and you want us to pay a dealer extra for a certified car?”
It’s true that I used to be an Internet manager for a major car dealer and have since written on how to sell cars online, as well as how to avoid making mistakes when buying used vehicles.
Based on that experience, I explained the facts of life to my daughter: I want my two grandchildren (along with my daughter and her husband, of course) in a safe vehicle that’s been fully checked out by a mechanic and carries a warranty for future problems.
You can get these benefits two different ways:
Choosing the Right Option
When my daughter informed me that their Toyota Matrix was too small for their growing family, I found myself extolling the virtues of CPO vehicles. As much as I would have enjoyed teaching her and her spouse how to create a virtual certified vehicle--and put much-needed cash in their pocket--a formal certified program was their best choice. Here’s why:
Benefits of a CPO Program
When you buy a CPO vehicle, you are getting a used vehicle that meets a higher standard. Peace of mind can be priceless. To qualify, a CPO vehicle can only be a few years old with a limited number of miles. It must pass an extensive mechanical inspection with any deficiencies fixed. Then the manufacturer--not the dealer--adds an extended warranty. If something does go wrong, the buyer is protected.
In addition, there are usually other benefits that can include roadside assistance, trip interruption service, a free vehicle history report, and other goodies.
In Part II of this series we take an in-depth look at the three components of every certified pre-owned program: 1) certification/selection 2) warranty 3) extras. Part III teaches you how to create a virtual CPO option where you gain all the benefits of a certified program but get to keep much-needed cash in your pocket.
L. James Johnson's new book, HELP! I Gotta Sell My Car NOW! New Rules for Selling Your Vehicle Online! is available for download at BayAreaCarGuy.com. You can also download his FREE report, The 8 Biggest Mistakes Used Car Buyers Make & How to Avoid Them!