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A red 2020 Ram 2500 Power Wagon is shown from the front while it drives through mud after leaving a Certified Pre-Owned Ram dealer.

Interested in the Ram CPO Program? You’ll Want to Read This!

A coin always has two sides, but what happens when you combine the two? You get a marvel like a Certified Pre-Owned Ram. As car buyers, we often want to hold onto as much of our two-sided coins as possible, and buying Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a way to do that without sacrificing quality and benefits. CPO vehicles are used models that meet strict criteria and, as such, come with warranties you will typically find on brand-new models. They may cost a little bit more than a typical used model, but the benefits make the extra cost worth it.

When you visit your Certified Pre-Owned Ram dealer, you’ll find a variety of vehicles from the past five model years, so you have options when it comes to which one you choose. There is an age limit for CPO vehicles, but what else does the program cover? What benefits do you get when you buy CPO? We are here to help you understand all the details.

There Is Some Age, but They Are Still in Great Condition

Something that many people know about the automotive market is that a new car begins to lose its value the minute you drive it off of the lot. Vehicles depreciate quickly in the first years of ownership, which is why buying used is often a better investment of your money. Many people think that buying used means buying something that is worth less simply because it has some wear on it, but that’s simply not true with modern vehicles, especially Rams. Ram vehicles are known for being long-lasting, so picking a model with a few thousand miles on it won’t hurt its longevity and will help your wallet.

Is depreciation something you have to worry about with CPO vehicles? Truthfully, you’ll always be dealing with depreciation of some kind; that’s the nature of the beast. However, CPO vehicles will depreciate at a far lower rate because the majority of their value decrease already took place. According to CARFAX, a vehicle goes through most of its depreciation during the first five years of its existence on the market, but most notably, within the first year. If you are looking for the best value, look for a Certified Pre-Owned model from four or five model years ago, as it will be near the end of its rapid depreciation. However, choosing a model from even just a year ago will still be less of a price hit, and if you plan to use the vehicle for a long time, then depreciation won’t matter as much in the long run.

In addition to having a limit on age, CPO Ram vehicles also have a limit on mileage. Only vehicles with less than 70,000 miles can be eligible for the CPO program. That means that while the truck will have some wear on it, it won’t have too much. We suggest looking for a newer model with low miles if you hope to use the truck for as long as possible, but a five-year-old model with 65,000 miles will still serve you well.

A white 2020 Ram 1500 is shown from the front at an angle while parked in front of a garage.

Everything Checks Out

Something immediately separating a CPO Ram vehicle from a traditional pre-owned one is the process it goes through before hitting the dealership lot. More specifically, Ram vehicles are subjected to a 125-point inspection. The inspection leaves no stone unturned and is crucial to determine the vehicle’s eligibility. A small error can ruin a vehicle’s chance for eligibility if it can’t be rectified, and the inspection focuses on various facets of the vehicle, from the powertrain and interior to exterior cosmetic blemishes.

Before being put up for sale, the Ram vehicle will have any open recalls resolved and any issues repaired or replaced. The inspection is one of the best parts of the CPO program, but if that’s not enough to convince you the truck you are looking at is a good one, then don’t fret because every CPO Ram vehicle is equipped with a CARFAX report. You’ll know that the truck you are looking at has a clean history and no problems before you buy it.

Protecting the Investment

Are you ready for the biggest difference between a Ram CPO vehicle and a regular pre-owned one? Warranties. That’s right—the warranties you get with the purchase of your CPO Ram vehicle will be similar to the ones you’d get had you spent the extra money and opted for the latest model. Because CPO vehicles are no more than five years old, they often have the same tech and features as newer options and are protected in much the same way.

To start with, every Certified Pre-Owned Ram vehicle comes with a three-month/3,000-mile Maximum Care Warranty. This warranty covers everything from front to back on your vehicle in the event that something goes wrong. What if the vehicle is newer than three years and still has its original bumper-to-bumper warranty? The original bumper-to-bumper warranty will remain intact, and once it expires, the aforementioned three-month/3,000-mile warranty kicks in, meaning you’ll get some additional time.

The bumper-to-bumper warranty covers plenty, but what it doesn’t cover is the engine, transmission, brakes, and other components located under the hood. For this, we have the seven-year/100,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty that comes with the purchase of any new Ram vehicle. This warranty starts on the date the vehicle was originally sold as new, and since Ram Certified Pre-Owned vehicles can’t be older than five years, you will likely have a good portion of this warranty still left (unless it has reached the mileage limit). You also have the option to upgrade these warranty plans if you would like a little more coverage.

A red 2021 Ram 1500 TRX is shown from the front while driving through sand.

Anything Else to Know?

Is there anything else you should know before you pick out a CPO Ram? Now you know the fundamentals of the CPO program and what you can expect, but what about the selection itself? After all, Ram is widely considered one of the most popular automotive manufacturers, especially when discussing pickup trucks. There’s the fan-favorite Ram 1500 Classic and its newer counterpart, the Ram 1500, both of which have bestowed millions of drivers with a hearty pickup truck with more capability than you’ll know what to do with. If you’re looking to double down and get a true beast of a machine, the Ram 2500 and 3500 heavy-duty pickups are fan favorites because of their impressive towing ratings. For example, a Ram 3500 from 2020 will max out at 35,100 pounds of towing capacity, while a newer 2022 model can get up to 37,090 pounds.

You can even find some exciting models, like the Ram 1500 TRX from 2021 or 2022, on the Certified Pre-Owned lot. The variety of options you have is wide, so even though you don’t get to pick all of the features and packages you want like you can do when you buy new, you still have plenty of options to choose from to get the capability you need. So, to recap, you can get a solid Ram truck with all of the great modern features and capabilities you need and the warranties you want without having to pay the high prices of a new model when you choose to buy a Ram Certified Pre-Owned truck.