Cars.com is an automotive mega site based out of Chicago, Illinois. This company’s online destination assists shoppers in buying a new, used, or certified used vehicle. Cars.com seeks to make automobile shopping a stress-free experience by arming consumers with all the comprehensive knowledge and tools they need to make informed and intelligent car-buying decisions. Cars.com receives over 30 million visits from shoppers each month. Visitors discover a comprehensive selection of all makes and models, research tools, and expert reviews. 

Keep reading for pros and cons, plus Cars.com reviews from real users. 

Top Ranked Companies

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#1 CarGurus chevron_right
8.5 Overall Score
2.9
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(301)
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#2 Kelley Blue Book chevron_right
8.2 Overall Score
4.6
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(152)
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#3 CarFax chevron_right
7.6 Overall Score
4.3
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(114)

The Good

  • Advice, Tools, and Resources
  • RepairPal Partnership
  • Mobile Apps

Advice, Tools, and Resources

Cars.com offers an extensive menu of products and services for automobile buyers and sellers. Shoppers can search for vehicles both locally and nationally with a wide range of features and accessories. You can read hundreds of expert reviews and compare cars side-by-side. Discover what cars match your lifestyle and get tips and advice on owning and maintaining your vehicle.

There is also a quick-start guide on the website to guide you through the car buying steps. Cars.com will help you calculate the price range you can afford and how much your monthly payment would be. You can also find out whether you should buy or lease a car and how to negotiate with dealers.

This company's website will also help you find the best rebates and financing offers available in your local area on the vehicles you are interested in and how to get the best interest rate possible.

You can find out the estimated trade-in value of your current vehicle and obtain knowledge on how to get the best car loan possible.

Cars.com offers its visitors a full menu of resources for buying and/or selling vehicles. These include:

  • Vehicle history - Cars.com provides potential buyers a direct link to autocheck.com's vehicle history report to learn if the car has been:
    • Reported in an accident
    • Branded a lemon or total loss
    • Damaged in a flood
    • Reported repossessed or stolen
  • Payment calculator for:
    • Auto loans
    • Affordability
    • Cash Back vs. Low interest
    • Loan vs. Lease
  • Comparison tool:
    • Allows customers to compare vehicles side by side
    • Shows how cars are similar and how they're different.
    • Choose up to four cars and start comparing.
  • Recommendation tool - Lets customers instantly find the best cars for them by indicating what they're looking for regarding:
    • car model
    • body style
    • number of car seats
    • minimum highway gas mileage
    • transmission and engine preferences
    • essential equipment and features
    • technical and performance requirements
  • Trade-in value tool - Allows customers to get free estimates of their car's value to get an idea of what a dealer or private party will offer based on:
    • Zip code
    • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
    • Car's Make, Model, Year
    • Style
    • Approximate mileage
    • Exterior color

RepairPal Partnership

A new feature released recently on the website is called Service and Repair. Cars.com partnered with RepairPal.com to offer consumers estimates on possible vehicle repairs. Consumers can learn maintenance and repair tips and find trusted certified service centers in their area. You can also learn if there are any recalls on your automobile. Be aware that not all features in the Service and Repair area work on the website at the moment as it is brand new.

Mobile Apps

The Cars.com app holds high iOS and Android ratings due to the following features:

  • App is free
  • Helps find new and used cars in the local area
  • Has Comparison tool where you can compare different car models, prices and features, side by side
  • On the lot pricing where you can find and compare vehicle pricing information while at the dealership
  • Access to car reviews from car owners and Cars.com Experts to help you make the right choice
  • Ability to sign up to access your favorite Cars and Searches from any device or computer.
  • Available Dealer Reviews from real car shoppers
  • Dealership directions and hours of operation
  • Ability to write reviews about your experience at local car dealerships.
  • Ability to sell your car
  • Ability to check car availability by calling or emailing Dealers and Private Sellers right from the app to check availability or schedule a test drive.
  • Auto Loan and Trade-in Calculator where you can use the monthly payment calculator to see how your payment will change based on:
    • down payment
    • trade-in value

All potential buyers have to do is plug in the car's VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) or License plate number.

  • Extensive Features allowing you to filter your results by categories such as exterior color, door count, price, year, fuel, transmission, and listing date

The Bad

  • Ads & Scams

Ads & Scams

The ads listed on the website do not always accurately state the actual price of the car when you click on the websites associated with those ads. Cars.com could do a better job with filtering false advertisements and scams posted on its site. Proceed with caution and protect yourself with any online transactions, especially when it comes to your personal privacy and financial data. Other than that, Cars.com visitors report a pleasant experience with the research information and customer service received from the company.

Unfortunately, there are also many scams on the internet utilizing e-commerce sites—and Cars.com is no exception. In fact, the nature of the site will attract such types.

While the vast majority of vehicle listings on Cars.com are legitimate, visitors should be aware that certain individuals post vehicle listings on Cars.com for the sole purpose of scamming potential car buyers. Similar to a site like Craigslist, which is a free open posting board, the site itself is a medium only and not responsible for the misconduct of the people using its services. Customers need to understand that avoiding fraud is their sole responsibility.

The Bottom Line

Cars.com's achievement of one million consumer-generated online reviews is a testament to its transparent and honest model for generating consumer feedback to better serve their customers' needs. Intended to provide a more tailored consumer experience across all devices, 40 percent of new Cars.com dealer reviews are based on a full car buying and selling service experience-with more to come.

Our Recommendation: Cars.com appears to be a trusted and reliable website to help consumers make educated decisions on their next new, used, or certified used vehicle purchase. Whether you are buying or selling a car or need one repaired, this company can assist you with your unique needs and financial situation.

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User Reviews

Star Rating

4.2
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62 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 star
48%
4 star
34%
3 star
8%
2 star
3%
1 star
6%

Sentiment Criteria

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Jeremy Webb

March 10th, 2020 Dallas, TX

Cars.com is a great way to find new and used cars fast and easy. I found my used Ford Explorer back in 2012 and cars.com made it easy for me. Many filters to search for specifics of different vehicles, color, make, model etc. and plenty of photos to see find the vehicle you are looking for.

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Ashley Vildor

March 10th, 2020 Tallahassee, FL DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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There are some great filters on this site that led me to exactly the type of car I needed. They include cars that are reasonably priced!

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OwenE.

March 9th, 2020 Norcross, GA DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Easy to navigate and find good prices in my range for cars I am actually looking for.

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Maryann Renteria (Mckrae)

March 4th, 2020 Phoenix, AZ DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I love my new car! It’s a Nissan Pathfinder. I love my car and am super happy with all the bells and whistles it came with!❤️

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Anita pea

March 4th, 2020 Dallas, TX DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars.com was good to use to find cars but the website was really slow to use when looking for them.

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Randi Nelson

March 2nd, 2020 Managua, MN

Cars.com is my first place to search when in the process of buying a car. They have reliable pricing and it gives an idea of current car prices.

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Tiffany Barney

February 28th, 2020 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Great option for car buying. The website is super helpful and user friendly. I’d use it again.

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JD Dunklee

February 26th, 2020 Hattiesburg, MS DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Using cars.com was such an easy and painless process. I was able to find a car within my price range, and close to me within a few dags

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Reckholdt

February 26th, 2020 Magna, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars.com has a good selection of cars to choose from and they were easy to work with.

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Ethan Guilbeau

February 25th, 2020 Richton, MS

This site is a pretty good site for finding the right type of vehicle for you. My only recommendation is that they require their sellers to include more detailed pictures of the vehicles

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Brayden Ibert

February 22nd, 2020 Houston, TX DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I found my current car on cars.com and the process was so easy. There is not a better website out.

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Cim Carver

February 21st, 2020 Cheyenne, WY

Cars.com is a great site and extremely helpful when researching cars and looking to purchase.

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Suv

February 20th, 2020 Providence, RI

Great a easy to search for cars in my area and see competing prices for the same car I want.

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Chantell Filiaga

February 19th, 2020 South Jordan, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Love cars.com it gives you so many options for what you are looking for. Makes looking for a car 10x easier. I found my dream car with the use of the app because it showed me exactly where it was for how mich and which company had it in stock.

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Lknls

February 19th, 2020 Salt Lake City, UT

They give me useful and helpful information on car prices as well as research on vehicles you are interested in.

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take7

February 14th, 2020 Sandy, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Using it right now to find a car to buy. It hasn’t notified me once or changed except to move cars out of my saved file. I like that it’s an app to bring in information to one spot but it doesn’t do that very well as I still have to go to the sites or google to research. But it gives me an idea of where to start. I like the saving features and locations and the search features. Just wish it updated regularly and alerted me to new and nearby more quickly without me having to look myself.

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Donna

February 12th, 2020 Long Beach, MS DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars.com have always help with finding the right car.really like the service they offer

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SavorTheGlory

February 11th, 2020 Baytown, TX

Cars.com isn’t a bad searching tool for car shopping but there is definitely better in my opinion, the list of cars seems limited and the search engine is not easy to navigate.

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Eddie Rios

February 10th, 2020 Ogden, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars.com is simply fantastic. Their website has hundreds if not thousands of vehicles for sale. Intuitive search options help narrow variables to what is important to you. I find the process easy and smart with Cars.com. They lead me to the right vehicles in the right price range giving me plenty of info to tackle any purchase.

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Angelina Hamilton

February 7th, 2020 Gulfport, MS

I like this site I just wish some of the feature where easier to use. I was looking for leather in a car but my search result had so many that really didn’t have it.

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StihlTech

February 6th, 2020 Lebanon, IN DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Has several cars to search from, but the "deal rating" is WAY off. What it calls "great deals" are average, so it will lead you to dealers where you will overpay. CarGurus is a much better deal rating site.

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David T

February 6th, 2020 Draper, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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When I need a unique car (could be color, packages, etc.), I use cars.com. It has an amazing selection and I can always find what I am looking for.

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Audrey Mitchell

February 3rd, 2020 Managua, MN

Cars.com is a great company to use when looking for cars and wanting to price check different cars from different sellers. It is easy to navigate their website.

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Jane Collins

January 28th, 2020 Long Beach, MS

I like Cars.com. It searches much like Autotrader but doesn’t have as many vehicles to search. It’s my second favorite car search.

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SkylarPickens

January 17th, 2020 Gulfport, MS

Cars.Com helped me find a vehicle for my child in only one day! They are super easy!

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Windy Payton

January 16th, 2020 New Orleans, LA

Like they company very helpful and resourceful and helps you find whatever you want and need as for a vehicle that you spending your money on very helpful

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Mickey Mangum

January 14th, 2020 Long Beach, MS DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I've used Cars.com several times to value my vehicle. It always works as advertised and is easy to use. Great for shopping before you go to the dealers.

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Kristie Pierocich

January 13th, 2020 Long Beach, MS

Easy to use and reliable. Couldn’t imagine vehicle shopping without Cars.com to guide me.

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Debbie Fish

January 13th, 2020 Biloxi, MS

Very user friendly website when searching for cars and for comparison shopping.

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Claudina Moreau

January 6th, 2020 Fort Lauderdale, FL

I have used their website before and they had a huge selection of vehicles to choose from.

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CB Hill

December 31st, 2019 Cincinnati, OH DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I listed my vehicle on a couple car sites including this one, but it eventually sold on this site.

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Stacie

December 30th, 2019 Golden, CO

Found my current car with cars.com. It was exactly what I was looking for. Easy to use.

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Sherman Watson

December 16th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I found very good deals through this site, but great deals sell very fast!

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Roger Paradis

December 12th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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they are a good sounding board to get an Idea for prices and availability. Have not purchased from them as I find better deals.

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Rick

December 12th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Their information was accurate and the pricing was up to date.

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Laura

December 12th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I always come back to Cars.com when purchasing new wheels. Great experience every time!

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Roachelle

December 12th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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It's ok you never find anything on there if so it's not what you want

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Juan

December 4th, 2019 Beaver, PA

This is a great place to search for a new or used car. I found my current bmw 1 series on this website. I drove to chicago for it.

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Michelle W

November 27th, 2019 Coraopolis, PA

I used this service when I was looking at purchasing a new car. It was super helpful for me to get a ballpark of what I could afford and extremely user friendly.

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Alex Danielson

November 19th, 2019 Riverton, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I've been on Cars.com to check out their reviews and so far have been pleased with their service and info they provide!

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Todd Homitz

November 15th, 2019 Evans City, PA

I'm searching for a car right now and this is the only site I use to search for a used car. Easy to navigate and constantly updated.

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Eric Smith

November 11th, 2019 Riverton, UT

This site is set up to be user friendly and there are so many options to search it made it easy to find cars I was looking for.

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Katherine Whyte

November 8th, 2019 Miami, FL

Searching for available cars in your area is made easier when using Cars.com! The search engine can help refine your search to find the best car suited for you and your lifestyle.

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Jackie

October 17th, 2019 Chester, NJ DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Just sold a car; simple, user-friendly site and listings. Would use again.

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bailey jo

October 15th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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When we were looking for a second car, we looked everywhere and it wasn't till we found Cars.com that we were able to find a car that fit our needs perfectly and at a great price.

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Aliza Henline

October 15th, 2019 Provo, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I really disliked using this website. It was super confusing and you could tell that most of the cars were being sold by robots at car dealerships. I could never figure out contact information.

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Don Boren

October 9th, 2019 American Fork, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Easy to look up any type of car you are shopping for. Easy to filter by color, price, year and make. Lots of photos so you can see what you are shopping for.

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Grace wilson

August 19th, 2019 Olathe, KS DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars. Com is amazing. I was able to find a great car with an amazing price.

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Nicholas

June 14th, 2019 Lake Villa, IL

The search engine could be a little snappier when going between filters for a car.

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Concerned Customer

June 12th, 2019 Raleigh, NC DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Cars.com is only for dealers. We posted an ad late Saturday night to sell a personal vehicle when the dealerships were closed. A local dealership IMMEDIATELY posted a competing add, for the same vehicle, different color for a much lower price. Why did cars.com take our money for our posting if they have an arrangement with dealerships to immediately and automatically under price us? Use Craig's List if you want to sell a car. cars.com is only for Dealers, apparently.