Acura certified pre-owned warranty

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    Acura, Honda’s luxury marque, was conceived in secret by a handful of Honda engineers in the ’80s. Today, Acuras are known for their style, sportiness and relative affordability in the luxury space. Even still, they’re no small investment — and you might consider buying certified pre-owned (CPO) for dependability and bonus warranty protection.

    But how does Acura’s CPO program stack up to the competition? What do you get, what does it cost, and is it worth paying extra for?


    Key insights

    Acura Certified vehicles come in two tiers: Precision Certified and Precision Used. Precision Certified is likely the certification you want because Precision Used vehicles come with a much shorter warranty.

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    Precision Certified Acuras add two years/50,000 miles to the factory bumper-to-bumper warranty and one year/30,000 miles to the factory powertrain warranty.

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    That puts Acura in league with some of the best CPO programs in the market — luxury or otherwise.

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    Dealers tend to charge around $989 extra for certified Acuras, which is reasonable given the warranty, benefits and quality inspection. Still, it’s worth the effort to try and negotiate an even lower price.

    Jump to insight

    Acura’s certified pre-owned program explained

    Acura’s certification program for used vehicles is called Acura Certified, but Acura Certified vehicles actually come in two tiers: Precision Certified and Precision Used.

    *Measured from the date your vehicle first sold as new; **Measured from the date your New Vehicle Limited Warranty expired or the date you purchased the CPO vehicle, whichever came later

    Broadly speaking, you can think of Precision Certified as CPO and Precision Used as “CPO lite.”

    “Precision Used Acuras are going to be a bit older, but they still have to pass an inspection,” an experienced Acura sales rep told ConsumerAffairs. “You’ll also get a few months of peace of mind from the warranty.”

    Precision Certified Acuras have to pass a much more rigorous inspection and include one of the best CPO warranties in the business.

    “Buying CPO will extend your factory drivetrain warranty and your comprehensive warranty as well,” said the Acura sales rep.

    Some car warranty terms are measured from when the vehicle was new, so be sure to check the start date when comparing warranty lengths.

    For context, all new Acuras come with a four-year/50,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty from the factory. So if you buy Precision Certified, you’ll get the pair extended to six years/100,000 miles and seven years/100,000 miles, respectively, with the same $0 deductible.

    (Note: If your CPO Acura’s factory bumper-to-bumper warranty has already expired by the time you purchase it, you’ll still get two years/100,000 miles of bumper-to-bumper coverage starting on the date you purchase the vehicle.)

    Acura Certified vehicles also come with a nice host of benefits ranging from roadside assistance to rental car reimbursements, but we’ll detail those in a later section.

    » LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?

    How good are Acura’s CPO warranties?

    Acura’s CPO warranties stack up well against its competitors. Acura, Lexus and Genesis all provide six years of bumper-to-bumper protection with their CPO vehicles, and while Acura offers coverage for 25,000 miles longer than Genesis, Genesis offers a full 10 years of powertrain coverage to Acura’s seven.

    *Measured from when you bought the vehicle or the end of your factory bumper-to-bumper warranty

    » MORE: Best CPO warranties

    CPO Acura benefits

    In addition to extra warranty coverage, Precision Certified Acuras come with the following benefits:

    • 24/7 roadside assistance for the duration of the bumper-to-bumper warranty, including emergency fuel deliveries, battery jump-starts, lockout assistance, flat-tire changes and emergency towing to the nearest Acura dealer
    • Complimentary maintenance for your first year or 12,000 miles with your vehicle, including one scheduled maintenance visit with an oil change
    • Trip interruption reimbursements of up to $300 per day for up to three days to help cover meals, lodging and transportation if your Acura breaks down 100-plus miles from home
    • Rental vehicle reimbursements of up to $45 per day for up to four days to help cover the cost of a rental car while your Acura is in the shop for warranty work

    Overall these are excellent benefits for a CPO program, but be aware that Precision Used vehicles come with fewer perks.

    Is a CPO Acura worth it?

    There’s a good chance that paying extra for a certified pre-owned Acura is worth it — as long as you can find a dealer willing to sell one for less than $1,000 over the cost of a similar noncertified Acura.

    Why? In general, buying CPO is more likely to be worth it when:

    • The cost of buying CPO is less than $1,000 more than regular pre-owned.
    • The vehicle you’re considering suffers from below-average reliability.
    • The CPO bumper-to-bumper warranty lasts for at least one year/12,000 miles.

    Acura already checks box No. 3, so let’s check on the first two to explain our reasoning.

    How reliable are Acuras?

    Acuras have a mixed reputation for reliability, but overall it’s safe to say they’re above average.

    In its 2024 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, J.D. Power ranked the brand 20th out of 29 automakers, with 216 problems per 100 vehicles after three years. Consumer Reports, however, ranked the Japanese automaker a much higher fourth out of 30 in 2023.

    RepairPal, a site that helps estimate repair costs for various vehicles, gave Acura a 4 out of 5 (“above-average”) score for dependability, largely due to the low cost of ownership. According to the site’s data, Acuras average just $501 per year in maintenance and unplanned repairs, compared with the $652 average across all brands, luxury or otherwise.

    In consumer reviews for Acura on our site, drivers seemed happy with their vehicles but frustrated getting support from dealerships.

    “Purchased a 2023 MDX, damaged interior was concealed, dealer did not extend the (7) day exchange policy, three weeks later still bouncing around. Acura as a manufacturer is not helpful as well, they say ‘well it's an independent dealership’, baloney!!!!” wrote Peter, a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from Florida.

    It’s worth noting that, as Peter mentioned, car dealerships are independently owned and operated, so you might want to expand your search radius to find a reputable, well-rated dealer.

    But in terms of reliability, Acuras seem to rank well overall.

    How much does a certified pre-owned Acura cost?

    According to a study by iSeeCars, Acura Precision Certified vehicles tend to cost 4.3% more than conventional pre-owned vehicles, which equates to a $989 upcharge on average. That figure is consistent with the prices we saw on Edmunds as well as what the dealers were telling us.

    “It tends to cost us $985 to certify a pre-owned vehicle, between labor and reconditioning,” the dealer rep told us. “So the customer typically pays that premium.”

    It tends to cost us $985 to certify a pre-owned vehicle, between labor and reconditioning, so the customer typically pays that premium.”
    — an Acura sales representative

    That said, dealership prices (and CPO premiums) are negotiable, and you can learn how to negotiate with dealers the easy way in step eight of our article on how to buy a used car.

    If you can negotiate the CPO premium to below $1,000, purchasing a CPO Acura may be worth it. The warranty and benefits are excellent, and the extra peace of mind they provide is nice to have.

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    Do you need an extended warranty for your Acura?

    Acura’s official extended warranties, dubbed Acura Care Vehicle Service Contracts, can extend your six years/100,000 miles of CPO bumper-to-bumper coverage all the way out to eight years/120,000 miles. They also tend to cost $700-plus per year of coverage on an older Acura, with a $100 deductible to boot.

    Are they worth it?

    Considering the reliability of Acura vehicles — and the fact that they’re only expected to incur about $500 in maintenance and repairs each year — probably not. That said, these extended warranties are still a relative bargain if you want true peace of mind.

    And if you want that peace of mind past eight years/120,000 miles, consider an extended warranty from a third-party company.

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    Article sources
    ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. Specific sources for this article include:
    1. J.D. Power, “Vehicle Dependability Slumps as Rate of Deterioration Increases, J.D. Power Finds.” Accessed May 9, 2024.
    2. Consumer Reports, “Who Makes the Most Reliable New Cars?” Accessed May 9, 2024.
    3. Edmunds, “Certified Pre-Owned (CPO).” Accessed Aug. 4, 2023.
    4. RepairPal, “Acura Reliability Rating.” Accessed Aug. 4, 2023.
    5. iSeeCars, “Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Cars: Are They Worth the Extra Cost?” Accessed Aug. 4, 2023.
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