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Vintage Vehicles Manufacturers' inspection programs make it worth your while to buy used.

By Jill Amadio

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

If your budget is bust, but you need to replace company cars,you can save thousands of dollars by buying certified pre-ownedvehicles. They go through a rigorous inspection program by theoriginal manufacturer before dealers resell them. While prices arenegotiable and usually no higher than those of comparablenoncertified used vehicles, most aren't more than 5 years old,have fewer than 50,000 or 60,000 miles on them, and look brand-new.Most certified vehicles can be leased or purchased outright, oftenwith the same interest rates, incentives and rebates as new carsand trucks. Manufacturers' 100-plus-point inspections includechecking the powertrain, chassis, underbody, all interior andexterior systems, hardware and functional components.

Lexus' 128-point bumper-to-bumper inspection includesreplacing tires, brake pads and other parts as necessary;there's also a warranty and roadside assistance for three yearsor 100,000 miles. If the car has been serviced at a Lexus dealer,the dealer can provide the car's history of repairs, damagesand maintenance. Although Lexus no longer has a fleet program, itsdealers, like other brands, may still offer volume discounts.Mercedes-Benz' Starmark certified pre-owned cars have aroadside assistance program with no mileage limit, a 132-pointinspection and a transferable warranty. Ford's certifiedvehicle program includes a 115-point inspection, a travel expensereimbursement program of up to $500 a day for three days, and asix-year/75,000-mile warranty.

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