The expansion of the coverage for certified used cars at Ford dealers will mean buyers with problem credit should have lower out of pocket expenses during an auto loan

2012 Ford Focus SE
Our experience

While changes to its certified used car program aren't as far reaching or comprehensive as those from either Chrysler or Volkswagen, it does mean that even consumers with poor credit that have been approved for an auto loan can browse Ford dealer lots with greater confidence.

At least that's our opinion here at Auto Credit Express where for over two decades we've been helping car shoppers with bad credit searching for online car loans find those dealers that can offer them their best chances for car loan approvals.

Shopping for used cars

We know that in most instances credit-challenged borrowers will choose to finance a used car. This makes sense for them if for no other reason than these vehicles are currently much more affordable than their new counterparts. But no only are they more affordable, they're also pretty reliable – especially the newer and lower-mileage vehicles that are required by most subprime lender programs.

Adding to this is the fact that in recent years and to encourage sales while raising the resale value of their used vehicles, car manufacturers have created an entirely new category of pre owned cars that falls between the traditional used car market and their new cars.

Certified used cars

Known in the industry as certified pre owned, or CPO for short, most certified used car programs work like this: If a vehicle meets certain age and mileage requirements, it can undergo a dealer inspection. If it passes the inspection and the required replacement of specific worn, broken or defective parts, dealers are allowed to sell it with a manufacturer-backed used car service contract (sometimes wrongly referred to as an "extended warranty").

Dealers then sell these manufacturer-backed certified used cars at a premium over regular used cars (and have to because of the added costs of the inspection, parts replacement, and service contract).

What is and is not covered by these service contracts varies widely depending on the manufacturer. Not long ago, Ford Motor Company had some news that involved changes to their CPO program.

Ford certified pre owned program

A year ago Ford made some improvements to its certified used car program. As it stands now, all Ford Motor Company vehicles now come with 12-month/12,000-mile comprehensive limited warranty coverage (compared to the previous program's three-month/3,000-mile warranty coverage). The powertrain warranty has also been enhanced from the previous version's six-year/100,000-mile coverage to seven-year/100,000-mile limited warranty coverage.

CPO buyers also receive seven years of roadside assistance as well as a free three month trial subscription to Sirius Satellite Radio on vehicles that are equipped for the service.

Improvements were also made to the inspection process. Inspections now cover such systems as MyFord Touch and the company's adaptive cruise control technology.

"A robust CPO program keeps more vehicles in the dealer network. It improves residual values, enhances dealer profitability, brings more customers to Ford and Lincoln lots, and ultimately results in lower vehicle costs for consumers," according to John Felice, general manager, Ford and Lincoln Sales. "As sales of our new products continue to grow, so will the demand for high-quality, low-mileage pre-owned Ford and Lincoln vehicles. That's why we work very closely with our dealers to invest in our CPO program and make it even more competitive."

As we see it

By extending the time and the mileage limits, Ford has given buyers, including those with credit issues, even more peace of mind if they choose to finance a certified used car – which is always a good thing.

Another good thing: at Auto Credit Express we match people that have experienced difficulties with their auto credit with new car dealers that can offer them their best opportunities for approved car loans.

So if you're ready to reestablish your car credit, you can begin now by filling out our online car loan application.