Ram Certified Pre-Owned Review

December 5, 2020

Buying a Ram certified pre-owned vehicle is an excellent option for anyone who wants to get into a quality vehicle without paying new car prices. They offer a thorough 125-point inspection to ensure that any car they certify won’t break down on you any time soon.

We’re about to cover everything you need to know about the Ram certified pre-owned program, including the warranty, what’s inspected, and other add-ons. Of course, make sure you research your ideal car well before you visit the dealership.

TLDR; The Ram certified pre-owned program is average, which is a good thing. The 125-point inspection has a few points less than other manufacturers, but it’s still comprehensive. We don’t like the $100 deductible for covered repairs, as that could add up over a vehicle’s life. The short bumper-to-bumper warranty is also unfavorable.

Ram’s Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Information

Ram has a decent warranty for their certified pre-owned vehicles. It’s nothing spectacular, but it’s not terrible. We consider this warranty average for the industry.

What does Ram’s Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

The most common questions people ask regarding a certified pre-owned program are about the warranty. Any Ram certified pre-owned vehicle comes with two warranties covering different parts of the car.

Maximum Care Warranty:

  • Three months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first
  • Begins when the Ram certified pre-owned vehicle is purchased or when the New Vehicle Warranty expires (if purchased while still under this warranty)
  • Covers most vehicle components, both on the interior and exterior
  • There is a $100 deductible per visit for any covered repairs

Powertrain Limited Warranty:

  • Seven years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first (begins when the vehicle was sold as new)
  • Covers repairs on the powertrain’s major components, such as the driveline, engine, and transmission.
  • There is a $100 deductible per visit for any covered repairs

One of the significant downsides of the Ram certified pre-owned warranty is the deductible. This deductible is unusual for CPO warranties, and we hope someday Ram reconsiders this fee.

These warranties are transferable if you sell your car while it’s still covered. However, there is a $150 fee to transfer the warranties. This fee seems unnecessary and makes the Ram CPO warranty worse in our eyes.

How long does Ram’s Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Last?

The Powertrain Limited Warranty lasts for seven years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. It’s worth noting that both numbers began when the vehicle was sold as new, not from when you buy it.

The Maximum Care Warranty is good for three months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first. We think this is absurdly low, considering 3,000 miles is an average oil change interval. This coverage interval is also short by industry standards.

Ram certified pre-owned warranties also come with three different Certified Upgrade Plans. Each of these plans begins on the date of purchase. They also require a deductible. The official Ram website does not provide additional details on these upgraded plans and directs you to visit a dealer.

Ram’s Certified Pre-Owned Inspection

Ram is quite proud of their inspection checklist. Every vehicle that earns the title of certified pre-owned will undergo this inspection.

Before being inspected, every vehicle must meet the following criteria:

  • Less than 75,000 miles
  • Less than five model years old
  • Absolutely no frame damage
  • Completely clean title
  • No aftermarket accessories that compromise the safety, emissions, or general operation

Once a car meets those criteria, it moves on to the inspection. You can view the complete checklist on the Ram official website:

  • Pre-road tests, including checking the hood release, all fluids, the battery condition, and the throttle linkage system
  • Operational checks, including the seat adjusters, ignition switch, air back systems, brake lamps, windows, and horn
  • Road test, including cold-idle quality, ease of starting, and gear selector
  • Steering performance, including power steering performance and steering wheel alignment
  • Equipment operation, including cruise control and instrument panel
  • Powertrain performance, such as acceleration performance, clutch operation (on manual transmissions), and hot-idle performance
  • Braking performance, such as vehicle tracking and anti lock brake system
  • Post-road tests, such as visibly inspecting any possible leaks and hot restart performance
  • Maintenance standards, including checking all fluids, inspecting the exhaust system, and front and rear suspension

Any Ram certified pre-owned has gone through intensely thorough testing. The rigorous testing is why we also suggest going for a CPO vehicle over a ‘side of the road’ used car. A CPO has been tested and is proven to be a safe buy.

Other Ram Certified Pre-Owned Perks

While the inspection and the warranty are the main selling points of buying a CPO vehicle, automakers like to add some bonuses. Purchasing a Ram certified pre-owned car comes with some of these perks:

  • You’ll receive a 3-month subscription to SiriusXM
  • It includes 24/7 roadside assistance that covers all the common issues, such as flat tires, lockouts, or when the vehicle isn’t starting
  • If your vehicle is in for warrantied repairs, you’ll receive a rental car allowance of $35 per day, up to five days
  • You’ll be given a comprehensive Carfax report for your vehicle (how reliable is Carfax, though?)

We like the perks, we like the powertrain warranty, and we appreciate the thorough inspection. Ultimately, the Ram certified pre-owned program is par for the course. They compete with other car manufacturers but fall short in some areas, such as the Maximum Care Warranty (3,000 miles is too low!). However, buying a pre-owned vehicle is always better than buying a standard used car and making some mistakes. Depending on the numbers, we always suggest going for a CPO vehicle.


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