What is the Difference Between Used and Certified Pre-Owned?

Used cars on a lot

Interested in learning about the difference between the CPO vs. used vehicles at our dealership? We can help. Technically, both categories fall under the header of “used.” Still, there are a few important differences between used and certified pre-owned models that you’ll want to explore before choosing one to bring home. Learn more about what the difference is between pre-owned and certified with the team at Quality Chevrolet and feel free to contact us with any questions by calling (760) 871-4005.

What to Know About Buying a Used Car

In order to understand the difference between used and certified vehicles, you’ll want to learn what used vehicles are. The first thing to know about used vehicles is that they have previously been driven by other owners. They tend to vary in terms of the model year, mileage, and number of previous owners. Because of this, they are priced lower than new models and certified pre-owned models. If you’re on a budget and need a more affordable model, we also have an inventory of used cars under $10,000 for sale.

Many will tell you that you should avoid a high-mileage newer model, but sometimes this model is a better option than an older model with lower mileage. It all depends on how well the vehicle was maintained, as well as what climate it was driven in (wet or freezing climates are harsher than dry or hot ones). You’ll also want to get a sense of whether the vehicle was primarily driven in dense urban traffic or on the highway. Here are a few other things to keep in mind when buying used:

  • Standard used vehicles are not required by the OEM to be inspected before being sold. Dealerships like Quality Chevrolet can be counted on to still inspect the vehicle for safety and quality, but you should approach private sales with greater caution. Any privately sold used vehicle you’re considering should be inspected by a trusted technician and taken for a test drive before making any offer.
  • Discuss any issues in terms of vehicle condition or performance that arise, to ensure the vehicle is fit for your needs and safe to drive. If you plan to purchase it despite any problems, make sure you factor the cost of repairs into your budget.
  • Some cars and SUVs can last more than 200,000 miles with proper care and maintenance, so a high-mileage used car could well be a good option if you’re on a tight budget.

Now that you know what used vehicles are, let’s learn about what the difference is between pre-owned and certified vehicles by comparing CPO vs. pre-owned.

What to Know About Buying a CPO Car

So, what is the difference between pre-owned and certified used vehicles? CPO vehicles are used models that have been thoroughly inspected by a factory-trained technician to ensure it meets all manufacturer qualifications. The inspection follows a strict list of points laid out by the manufacturer. If this model passes the inspection, it can be considered part of the manufacturer’s certified pre-owned program.

The requirements for the Chevrolet CPO program are as follows:

  • The 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 to ensure like-new quality
  • Offered with extended warranties and/or limited powertrain warranties
  • Typically, include roadside assistance, vehicle reports, trip-interruption services, and other perks

The main difference between certified used cars and used models? CPO cars are typically newer models with less mileage that come at a higher cost than used but are still more affordable than a new car. Looking to buy used but enjoy the peace of mind that new car reliability brings? Consider a certified pre-owned vehicle.

Shop for Pre-Owned Vehicles at Quality Chevrolet

After learning what the difference is between used and certified pre-owned models, explore our online inventory, so you can compare CPO vs. pre-owned vehicles with test drives. Our finance team can also help you save more with our rotating used vehicle specials. Contact us today if you have more questions about what the difference is between pre-owned and certified pre-owned vehicles. While you’re here, take a moment to explore our used trucks for sale!

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