Clearing Up Basics of Certified Preowned Cars

Within the world of used cars, the term “certified preowned” has begun to take on a very exclusive feel. Also called CPOs, these cars are generally more expensive and considered the highest standard for a used car.

At Auction Direct USA, we have a wide selection of certified preowned cars along with other used vehicles. We’ve found that many of our customers don’t fully understand what this term means when we use it, and what standards a CPO vehicle is being held to. Here’s a primer on some of the basics here.

Certified Criteria

As the name suggests, CPO involves someone certifying the vehicle in question. This certifier is using a set of standards or criteria to carry the CPO label. Where many folks become confused is in which set of standards is being used.

At a brand-name dealership, the manufacturer sets CPO standards – each vehicle of its make will have its own criteria. Ford has a 172-point inspection, for instance, and many manufacturers also include a mileage factor. Chrysler, for instance, requires that a vehicle is under five years old and has fewer than 75,000 miles for it to even be considered as a CPO vehicle – and this is before the rest of the inspection.

Independent Programs

Independent used car dealerships have also developed their own CPO programs by devising a set of standards that can be applied across all makes of vehicles. These standards and applied processes will be different from a manufacturer, but if the dealership holds itself to high standards in general, the quality here will be just as high. Good independent dealerships should be willing to share their standard for certification with you, so you can determine if their CPO vehicles are good enough to justify raised prices.

Best Alternative to New Car

As long as you’re using a reputable vendor, a CPO vehicle is the highest-quality option available as an alternative to a brand new car. They meet a rigorous set of standards, and are very close to new in many cases – but with a lower price tag. As long as you’ve done your research on the standards applied, you can feel confident you’re getting a great car when you shop CPO.

For more on certified preowned cars, or to learn about any of our used car selection, speak to the pros at Auction Direct USA today.

Questions to Ask Before Selling Your Car

Selling a car can be a difficult decision for many reasons. Many of us get emotionally attached to our cars, and this can make some of the important financial considerations that go into selling one a bit tougher to manage.

At Auction Direct USA, our car dealers are here to help you with a sale or trade-in process. We’ll keep you on task and remind you when your objective judgment is being clouded. Here are five questions you should be asking yourself before you make the final call to sell a vehicle.

Why Are You Selling?

Some people go through “new car lust” – our brain’s natural desire for something new or better. It’s important not to confuse this with legitimate reasons for wanting a new car, such as constant and costly repairs to your current used car.

In today’s online age, it’s much easier to make these kinds of decisions. You can learn how long you can reasonably expect your current car to last given its current condition, and when it might become too expensive to continue owning it.

What’s the Worth?

This may seem like a straightforward question: What is your car’s Blue Book value? However, it’s actually more detailed. You have to consider other financial items – things like the value of not relying on public transit, the value of being free of a car payment, or even the emotional value of your own vehicle. These metrics are subjective, but they’re important to think about before selling.

How Will You Sell It?

There are a few different ways of selling your car, from private sales to a trade-in with a dealership like Auction Direct USA. Your choice will depend on how much legwork you want to do, along with the value of the car.

Are Your Expectations Reasonable?

If you’re getting a new or preowned car to replace the one being sold, make sure your expectations are realistic here. You may have a perfectionist ideal for what your new vehicle will be like, but you should be more realistic – separate what’s possible and what’s simply wishful thinking well before you commit to selling the old car.

Are There Costs Associated With the Upgrade?

It’s easy to skip over additional costs during a car sale, but these can be significant. Consider things like higher insurance premiums, state licensing fees, taxes and any finance charges you may have to pay for your replacement vehicle. Through this lens, a move that looks affordable can quickly look different.

Want to learn more about selling a car, or interested in any of our other services? The pros at Auction Direct USA are standing by.