Car Industry

Honda will let you lease a certified preowned car -- with a catch

You have to have the Fair app and reside in Southern California.

Leasing a CPO vehicle could be very attractive to people.
Nick Miotke/Roadshow

The coronavirus pandemic might finally be the thing that pushes more car sales to a completely online service. We've heard of grand plans to make buying a car a point-and-click process for years, but now, automakers and other companies are really ramping things up. That includes Honda, which will let you lease a car without ever stepping foot in a dealership.

Not a new car, however, but a certified preowned Honda. Leasing programs for used vehicles are hard to come by, which makes Wednesday's announcement significant. Honda and its partner Fair said their collaboration will let car shoppers in the Southern California area lease a CPO Honda with a few clicks and a digital signature.

All shoppers need to do is select their CPO Honda via the Fair app, fill out forms for lease financing approval online and then give one final digital signature to seal the deal. They can then choose to pick up their leased CPO Honda from one of the participating dealers, or opt for free delivery.

Not only do CPO vehicles offer ways for car shoppers to take home a nearly new vehicle in most cases, it's a boon for automakers. Many see certified used cars as a way to capture buyers and hopefully keep them with the brand for decades to come. Maybe you hop into a CPO Honda Civic today, but in a few years, you opt for a CR-V, then a Pilot. The idea of leasing CPO vehicles is a different step altogether, but clearly, Honda sees the value in this kind of program.

Honda will run this CPO pilot program for six months and investigate other variables it could toss in with a CPO lease, such as extended warranty coverage or maintenance. Perhaps leasing used cars won't be so strange in the future, and heck, it may even come right to your door.

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