The American Express Auto Purchasing Program is a platform for Amex cardholders to buy a new or used car, offering competitive pricing and the opportunity to pay partially with your Amex.
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If you have an American Express card, you might want to check out the American Express Auto Purchasing Program when it’s time to get a new car. The site is designed as a perk to all Amex cardholders, and it is loaded with potential savings in the form of discounts, competitive pricing and rebates. Plus, dealers on the platform will all accept an American Express card for at least $2,000 of your payment – meaning you can rack up great rewards along the way.
What is the American Express Auto Purchasing Program?
The American Express Auto Purchasing Program is a platform for Amex cardholders to buy a new or used car. The site has a network of dealers who offer competitive pricing, benefits and the ability to pay in part or completely with an American Express card.
The Amex Auto Purchasing Program website is powered by TrueCar, which shows users fair pricing based on what customers actually paid for a vehicle. Amex cardholders can search for new or used vehicles by make in their zip code, and then filter down to specific features they are looking for – such as mileage and color.
If you buy a car through the Amex Auto Purchasing Program, you can also report it on the site to see if you qualify for additional benefits that can save you more money, such as repair expense reimbursement.
How the Amex Auto Purchasing Program works
To buy a car through the Amex Auto Purchasing Program, you’ll start your search on the website. Just input information about your preferred vehicle and location into the search bar.
For a new car search, you’ll first get a results page with the market average price. Then, you can answer follow-up questions about your personal information to narrow down to the best result. For a used car, you’ll be directed to a more traditional search results page, where you can filter results by year, mileage and more. Competitive prices are highlighted to show you if you are getting a good deal.
Once you select the new or used vehicle that best suits your needs, you’ll be prompted to provide contact information. Keep in mind that filling out this information will lead to calls from the dealership, so you should only request a TruePrice (for used vehicles) or member pricing (for new vehicles) once you are sure you’ve selected the car you want.
Once you express interest in a vehicle, you’ll be contacted directly by dealers with cars that meet your qualifications.
Benefits of using the Amex Auto Purchasing Program
So what is the benefit of finding a car this way? There are several perks to keep in mind that comes with buying a car through the Amex Auto Purchasing Program.
Points or cash back
While it can be difficult to pay for a car completely with a credit card, the Amex Auto Purchasing Program guarantees you can charge at least $2,000 of the cost to your Amex. That can be a huge plus, as it will earn you plenty of points or cash back with the right card. Plus, if you are trying to meet a spend requirement for an introductory bonus, this large purchase can be a great way to get there.
Beyond competitive pricing through TrueCar, car purchases through American Express might qualify for repair expense or auto deductible reimbursement from TrueCar if you report your purchase on the Amex Auto Purchasing Program website afterwards. American Express claims this can save you $2,000 or more. When you go through this method of buying a car, you can ensure you are getting a good deal without having to negotiate at the dealership.
TrueCar is a common resource for car shoppers, and the site claims that more than a third of car buyers interact with their network. With such a wide variety of users and a comprehensive database, TrueCar is a great place to start when researching what people actually pay for the car you want. That way, you can ensure you are paying a fair price.
Drawbacks of using the Amex Auto Purchasing Program
While buying a car through American Express has plenty of potential benefits, it might not be the best choice for everyone. If you are a pro negotiator focused on getting the best deal when you buy a new car, it is possible you can find a better price by hunting on your own.
Since the Amex Auto Purchasing Program only displays results that will accept American Express cards for partial payment, you aren’t getting a full picture of the available prices. And, while TrueCar is great for finding a good deal, it is always possible there is a better deal from another source.
Deciding which American Express card to use
If you decide to buy a car through American Express, it is important to choose the right credit card for your partial or full payment. You want to ensure you are getting top-notch rewards without taking on more than you can pay off.
First, you should keep in mind that many of American Express’s most popular cards are charge cards, and you must pay your balance in full each billing cycle. If you are charging a car down payment to your card hoping to have more time to pay down the balance, you’ll want to put the cost on a credit card instead.
For cardholders focused on getting the most possible rewards, choose your American Express card with the highest rate on general purchases, since this won’t fall in any major bonus category. Flat rate cards such as the American Express Cash Magnet® Card – which offers 1.5 percent cash back on every purchase – can be particularly rewarding for large purchases.
Top American Express cards
The American Express Auto Purchasing Program offers a great database of competitive prices to check out on your next car search. Plus, you’ll ensure you can use an Amex to cover part of your purchase so you can rack up some points or cash back from the transaction.