Edmunds.com Survey Reveals Strong Consumer Interest in Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles

Edmunds.com Survey Reveals Strong Consumer Interest in Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles


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Edmunds.com Survey Reveals Strong Consumer Interest in Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles

Certified Pre-Owned Car Pricing Available Exclusively at Edmunds.com

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — July 12, 2006 — A new survey from Edmunds.com, the premier online resource for automotive information, shows that consumers are extremely interested in purchasing certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles when shopping for a new or used car.

Almost 85 percent of respondents said they have considered or would consider purchasing a CPO vehicle, yet 57 percent said they didn't know the difference between a manufacturer and independent certified pre-owned program.

"There is an important distinction: a factory-certified vehicle is backed by the manufacturer and provides consumers with the option of servicing their vehicle at any of the franchise's dealerships," explained Edmunds.com Consumer Advice Editor Philip Reed. "We don't recommend dealer-certified cars because they typically offer a much more limited certification and no backing from the manufacturer."

Extended warranties, multipoint vehicle inspection, roadside assistance and reconditioning are usually included in manufacturer CPO programs. Of the benefits provided by certified programs, almost two-thirds of survey respondents said the warranty is the most important, while nearly 20 percent said a thorough inspection was most important. To compare CPO programs by manufacturer, visit Edmunds' CPO Comparator.

The premium for a CPO vehicle varies based on manufacturer and car type, averaging from around $500 for used subcompacts to as much as $3,000 for used premium sports cars. Interestingly, 31% of respondents said they would pay up to $500 extra for a certified pre-owned vehicle and 12% said they would pay over $1000 extra for a CPO. Almost one-fourth said they would not pay any additional amount for a CPO vehicle.

Edmunds.com is the only automotive price guide that provides consumers with average transaction prices for certified pre-owned vehicles. Edmunds.com True Market Value® pricing calculations for CPO vehicles takes into account dealer inspection and reconditioning, dealer cost of certified warranty and additional benefits provided by each manufacturer including roadside assistance and loaner vehicles.

"Certified sales are up 11% over last year and nearly 20% among some manufacturers as more consumers realize CPO vehicles provide a level of assurance and peace of mind that is hard to attain when purchasing a non-certified used vehicle," said Alex Rosten, Manager of Pricing and Industry Analysis at Edmunds.com. "Because our pricing methodology takes into account the differences in coverage and benefits between each certified pre-owned program, we can provide consumers with the most accurate pricing information available to help them negotiate their CPO purchases."

CPO Buying Tips from Edmunds.com

  • Research the difference between manufacturer CPO programs: Each manufacturer's program is different and provides different "extras." Certified warranties vary in coverage and length from 3 months/ 3,000 miles to 6 years/100,000 miles.
  • Learn the scope of the warranty: Almost any car can be certified, but a manufacturer-certified vehicle is factory-backed and provides consumers with the option of servicing their vehicle at any of the franchise's dealerships.
  • Review the warranty: You may still have to make decisions about how long you want the warranty to last. Know your options and what parts of the car are covered before you pay extra. Also, check to find out if the warranty will be transferred if you sell the car. If so, this increases the car's value.
  • Know the average transaction price of CPO vehicles: Check Edmunds.com's True Market Value® to learn what others are paying for the type of certified pre-owned car of interest.
  • Inspect and drive certified cars: Because the car is certified doesn't mean it is perfect. Inspect the car for dents and scratches and give it a thorough test drive. However, you don't have to inspect the mechanical condition of the car since that has been done by qualified mechanics.
"If you have your heart set on a particular, niche used vehicle, it may be challenging to find one that has been certified," explains Reed. "High-volume vehicles make up the majority of certified used vehicles since there is a large selection from which dealers can choose the cream of the crop."

For more information on certified vehicles, visit Edmunds' Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle section with tips and advice at www.edmunds.com/cpo.

About Edmunds.com, Inc.
Edmunds.com is the premier online resource for automotive information. Its comprehensive set of data, tools and services, including the industry's largest collection of automotive photographs and online videos, is generated by Edmunds.com Information Solutions and is licensed to third parties and used by over 15,000 cars dealers including 98 of the 100 dealers named to the Ward's Dealer Business "e-Dealer 100" list. Perhaps the most popular consumer product, Edmunds.com True Market Value® pricing, is relied upon by millions of people seeking market-reflective valuations for new and used vehicles. The company also supplies content for the auto sections of NYTimes.com, AOL, CNN.com and About.com; provides weekly data to Automotive News; and delivers monthly data reports to Wall Street analysts. In addition, Edmunds.com publishes Inside Line, a free high-speed online magazine for auto enthusiasts, and CarSpace, an automotive lifestyle social networking Web site for anyone with an interest in automobiles. Edmunds.com was named "Best Car Research Site" by Forbes ASAP, has been selected by consumers as the "Most Useful Web Site" according to every J.D. Power and Associates New Autoshopper.com StudySM, was ranked first in the Survey of Car-Shopping Web Sites by The Wall Street Journal and was rated No. 1 in Keynote's study of third-party automotive Web sites. The company is headquartered in Santa Monica, California, and maintains a satellite office in suburban Detroit.

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