Vroom Review: How It Works, Pros and Cons, Vroom vs. Carvana

By Zina Kumok
Updated on: Mar 26, 2020

No one loves the car dealership experience. It’s tedious, stressful and leaves you feeling taken advantage of. When you really think about it, why should anyone have to haggle with a stranger just to buy a vehicle?

Like many online retailers looking to simplify traditionally complicated buying experiences, Vroom offers an alternative. You can search, inspect and buy a car in the comfort of your own home.

Instead of negotiating for the best deal and feeling pressured to make a decision on the spot, you can compare their fixed prices at your own leisure.

But is Vroom truly a step forward in the evolution of car buying, or a gimmicky way to avoid the transparency that comes with seeing a car in person? What do Vroom customers have to say about the experience?

How Vroom Works

Vroom is an online car-buying site where you can buy used and like-new cars. Instead of visiting a dealership, talking to a pushy salesman and haggling over cost and features, you can handle the transaction almost entirely online.

The process is simple. You visit the Vroom website, choose a car, pay a $500 deposit and then pay in full or wait for financing. After everything is completed, the car will be delivered to you. Sometimes you can arrange to pick it up yourself if you live nearby. There’s a $599 delivery fee that’s non-refundable.

While you won’t have to visit a dealership, there may be some phone calls required. You also may have to sign and mail documents to the company.

Vroom’s online reviews leave something to be desired. They have a 2.1-star rating here on HighYa, based on 200 reviews. The Better Business Bureau gave them an A+ rating, but the average customer review is also two stars with 63 reviews.

Warranty

Each car comes with a seven-day return policy, up to 250 miles. If you don’t like the car, you can return it during that time. You’ll owe a $599 restocking fee unless you can prove the car didn’t match the description or had some serious problems.

Some Vroom cars have a free 90-day, 6,000-mile limited warranty. If your car needs a repair within that time, you can take it to a dealership or ASE certified mechanic. The 90-day warranty has a $50 deductible per instance.

Every vehicle comes with one year of free roadside assistance if you get a flat tire, the battery dies or you lock yourself out of the vehicle. The Vroom website says they may offer other extended warranty packages and gap insurance, depending on the car

Selling Your Car

Vroom accepts trade-ins and can add the value of your current car to your new purchase. You can also sell a car to Vroom even if you’re not buying a vehicle from them.

You’ll go to the Vroom website and type in the car’s information, like its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and mileage. You will then receive an offer within 30 minutes if done during Vroom’s business hours.

The offer is valid for 10 business days, up to 250 miles. If you agree to the price, the car will be picked by Vroom at a mutually-agreed-upon time. Payment is issued at pickup via cashier’s check.

If you buy a car from Vroom, trade-in your own and then return the new car, you can’t get your original car back. But you’ll still be paid for the value of your trade-in.

Car Selection

Vroom’s selection includes a variety of cars including gas-powered, hybrid and luxury vehicles. You can buy a Maserati or a standard Ford F-150 truck. All the cars have low miles, with the upper limit around 50,000 miles.

The selection isn’t as robust as Carvana’s, a similar online car-buying service. In a search for Toyota Camry models, Vroom had 42 options available while Carvana had 387. Vroom had 12 Teslas while Carvana had 79.

Carvana also tends to offer cars with higher mileage counts, capping at around 100,000, meaning they also offer lower price points.

Financing

Like Carvana and most car dealerships, you can finance a purchase through Vroom or use your own lender. Vroom works with major banks like Chase, Ally, and Capital One.

To see possible rates, you have to select a particular car and scroll down to the payment calculator. Type in the trade-in amount, down payment, estimated credit score and term length. Vroom will then estimate your payment and APR.

It’s still better to get pre-approved through a third-party lender – that way you can see what rates they offer before applying with Vroom.

Vroom vs. Dealership

If you’re buying a car and need to finance it, going to a dealership used to be your only option. Now sites like Vroom make it possible to buy a car without leaving your house.

The Vroom process claims to take around 11–15 days, which will vary if any issues arise with financing. One anonymous reviewer said his car was delivered a day earlier than promised.

One of the downsides to online car-buying services like Vroom and Carvana is that you can’t test drive the vehicle before you buy it. You’re also not able to have it inspected by an objective third-party mechanic.

Some customers report problems after buying the car and having a mechanic look at it. These include both minor cosmetic and major mechanical problems.

If you buy a car from a traditional dealership, they’ll usually let you take it to a mechanic for their own inspection. If the mechanic finds something, you can use that information to walk away from the car or negotiate for a better price.

This is where buying a car with Vroom can be difficult. If the car has no issues, you’re golden.

If the car starts having problems shortly after delivery, you have to negotiate with Vroom for a post-purchase discount or reimbursement. Unfortunately, you may have to call several times and provide solid proof for Vroom to refund you any money.

If you chose Vroom because you hate talking on the phone and dealing with salesmen, then initiating a dispute with them over a faulty car will probably be a nightmare.

Pros

Vroom is ideal for someone who wants to buy a car without taking the time to visit a dealership, go for a test drive and haggle with a salesman.

Pricing is fixed with Vroom, so the number you see on the site is the number you’ll pay, excluding taxes and registration fees. However, their website says they sometimes match competing offers, so you may get lucky if you can find the same car for a lower price.

Vroom will deliver your car within 10–14 days after all paperwork has been completed and finalized. This is longer than it would take from a dealership, so buyers should be prepared to wait.

The Vroom free roadside assistance program includes towing, battery service, lock-out assistance, and gas if you run out. This lasts for a year and covers anyone driving the car.

Cons

Some reviewers claim that Vroom delayed sending their car registration information. If you drive a car without proper registration, you risk getting a ticket and late fees. This can be stressful and costly – especially if Vroom declines to cover the late fees.

One Reddit user who bought a 2018 truck through Vroom returned it because of a dent that wasn’t in the description or photos, as well as rust on the bottom of the truck. While many people are happy with their purchase through Vroom, undisclosed cosmetic issues are fairly common.

Even though Vroom offers a seven-day return policy, they can decline to refund the delivery fee. If you can’t prove that the description or photos don’t match the car, you may have to eat that $599 delivery charge.

The Bottom Line

Though Vroom has competitive prices on their vehicles, their poor customer reviews indicate some serious problems.

Unless you don’t have a dealership nearby or you truly hate talking to salespeople, you should consider looking elsewhere for your next car. If buying a car online appeals to you, Carvana has better customer reviews.

If you still want to use Vroom, look at the pictures and description carefully. Vroom offers a free Carfax report which will show if the car has ever been in an accident, used for commercial purposes or on the receiving end of flood damage.

Read through the report carefully for any red flags. A little extra due diligence may prevent some of the major headaches other Vroom customers have reported.


Customer Reviews

Start your review of Vroom:
  • 374 Customer Reviews
  • 31% Recommend This Service
2.3 out of 5
5 star: 22% 4 star: 4% 3 star: 4% 2 star: 10% 1 star: 56%

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  • First car bought online and all good

    • By Mike J.,
    • Sacramento, CA,
    • Nov 22, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    I was a bit skeptical to buy a used car online, but all went very smoothly and the car arrived in practically new condition. I got my good quote and financing quickly. I was able to buy an extended warranty too. The car came within a week. The car was super clean but the seats were tan in color and I requested that the back seats be cleaned, so I took it to be detailed and Vroom approved and reimbursed me. Overall a good car buying experience.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Virtual
    • Car in good condition
    • Paperwork easy
    • Some hold times in calling customer service

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Awesome experience! Vroom is the future of car buying.

    • By Tyron H.,
    • Olive Branch, MS,
    • Nov 22, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    I will admit I was a little skeptical at first about the online buying experience. However, Vroom made everything easy. All the steps to buying a car were laid out. I was so impressed that currently I’m working on buying my teenage son a car. Like their commercial said the future of car buying is here. I’d like to personally thank everyone who worked on my deal. Just perfect! Special thanks to Tabitha Wells for going the extra mile for me.

    Pros and Cons:

    • The DocuSign
    • The Customer Support
    • The navigation of the website
    • No “cons” were specified in this review

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • 4 months later no registration

    • By Saul N.,
    • Dania Beach, FL,
    • Nov 21, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: 3–6 months
    Overall Experience:

    Everything has been fine up until the registration process. I received the car the first week of August and it is now November 19th and I still have no registration for my vehicle. And when you ask for an extension on the temp tag they require you to change your insurance to Texas minimum requirements which is a HUGE inconvenience. Also after they send the paperwork to your DMV, they just wipe their hands of the problem. I started with an excellent experience and I'm now left doubting if I'll use Vroom ever again or refer them to anyone.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Price
    • Sales rep
    • Delivery
    • Titles and registration
    • Lack of communication
    • No follow up

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Buyer beware

    • By Lynda B.,
    • Pennsylvania,
    • Nov 21, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    Love the process. Love the car...until the engine light came on 12 days later. Not covered under warranty. Vroom says the 7 days passed, not their problem. Intake air tube was glued as a cover-up and now I have to pay to get it fixed. The part is on backorder until January so after spending $20000 on a car I can't drive it for 2 months.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Ease of shopping
    • Nice car
    • Good price
    • It's a gamble, if you get a bad car you are on your own
    • Customer service sucks
    • Sold me a botched up repaired vehicle

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Terrible business with no communication, buyer beware!

    • By Sean W.,
    • Tennessee,
    • Nov 20, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    Very good experience until the car was delivered! The car was delivered at 11:30 at night to start. In looking over the car during delivery it was noticed that the car had been sideswiped on the driver's rear side. This was not noted as damage to the vehicle in purchase photos. I called Vroom first thing the next morning and agreed to exchange the car for the same year, make, and model car and thought there would be no issue. All paperwork and money had been done and I received a temp plate to drive until the car swapped out and the only difference in car trading is color and 4000 miles more than the car delivered. Also $100 higher in price (no problem). Was told no problem, just don’t drive over 350 miles on the car.

    Now after 5 weeks and 2 weeks into having the car they are saying they want an additional $3750 on top of the $2000 already given in order to exchange the car. I cannot list all the people I have spoken to from Maquala to Jamie, to Edward and many more. Up to 7 in one phone call. I still have the car that was delivered wrecked and they're wanting to charge me $600 for delivery of a wrecked car I don’t want. Who wants to buy a wrecked Mercedes Benz for their wife! I am at a loss with Vroom and warn anyone from purchasing from them. I will be fighting to get my $2000 back now and don’t feel this is going to be very easy. Buy at your own risk because they take no responsibility.

    VROOM responded publicly on 11/13/20 2:18 PM.

    Hi - we thank you greatly for your detailed and honest feedback - it's crucial for us to hear from valued customers such as yourself. We are very disappointed to hear that your experience with us has not been a seamless one, and we sincerely apologize for the communication challenges you have faced. To that end, we'd like to obtain more details about your particular situation so that we may look into this further and we will be in touch shortly to request your personal contact information.

    Thank you,

    -The Vroom Team

    VROOM responded privately on 11/13/20 2:18 PM.

    Hi - again, we apologize for the issues you've had with the vehicle purchased. It's certainly not the experience we want our customers to have, and we'd like to step in to help. Can you please provide the contact information (name, phone number, email) used for this purchase in order for us to look into this? We look forward to hearing from you soon.

    Thank you,

    - The Vroom Team

    I responded privately on 11/13/20 10:53 PM.

    For what good it will do as I’ve tried 3 times today a loan to correspond with Jamie who leaves a contact # that he cannot be reached at ! 855-865-1119 I call and call and call till I finally blew up on one of your employees and I do apologize but how much is one supposed to take when you given money to someone and then put off and avoided. I had 2 coworkers that were also very serious about purchasing a car from Vroom and we’re fixing to put money down till car war delivered and they have seen first hand how your costumers are not valued and constantly get run around and lied to along with just left wondering what’s going on day in and day out. 2 weeks now matter fact ! This purchase initially started Oct 16th and is still not complete and a loss for answers. Such a loss I even called the bank to see when my first payment was going to be due and they don’t even have a clue about me having a loan or applying . Yet I’ve had a car for 2 weeks that was delivered and if it wasn’t wrecked most likely wouldn’t have never even heard from us again. I honestly don’t think there is anything Vroom can due at this point as your company has brought my wife to tears and says she just knows we’re fixing to get severely ripped off now and stuck with a wrecked car ! Absolutely the worst transaction I have ever been through and so sick of hearing SORRY ! WERE SORRY ! SORRY FOR YOUR INCONVENIENCE! SORRY CAN YOU HOLD WHILE I TRY TO REACH SOMEONE! More like sorry you bought a car from us and now how can we get away with you taking a wrecked car ! Who wants to buy there wife a wrecked Mercedes!!! Our names are Sean & Bonnie and our #’s are xxx-xxx-xxxx I do have a job and have to work so if I don’t answer it would be nice to have someone reachable to call back. Not sure why private message was sent but it’s all saved and depending on Vroom as to weather this will be posted on Yelp , BBB , Facebook, Twitter Etc. we are really about DONE WITH VROOM !

    Employees worked with

    Jamie, Edward, Maquila, MANY OTHER!

    I warn anyone from using this company, and at this point, I'm out $2000 with still no communication or even someone to call with an extension, just a name of Jamie that no one knows how to reach.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Polite and friendly at beginning
    • Thought was easy purchase
    • Paid easily
    • Zero communication after paying
    • Being misled
    • Can not get ahold of person needed

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Garbage customer service

    • By Kevin M.,
    • Farmington Hills, MI,
    • Nov 20, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    Upon initiating a purchase I got phone calls from 3 separate sales reps (after stating that email was my preferred method of communication). Vroom contracts out delivery, so I'm sure it's luck of the draw, but my delivery person called me 3 days before delivery date at nearly 7 pm on a Sunday and told me he was an hour away and wanted to drop off the car. No 24 hours notice. Fine, I suppose?

    Next, I decided I wanted to upgrade the trim, so I called them back and initiated a return/exchange for a more expensive model. That was it. Customer service over. I've called for days and days and every single time I'm put on hold for 15-30 minutes. No one can ever help me and has to transfer me. Meanwhile, the previous car sits in my driveway. It has now been a week and a half with zero follow up. I absolutely will not be using this service again, nor recommending it to anyone.

    Pros and Cons:

    • The price
    • Customer service
    • Slow response times, if any
    • No transparency
    • Endless hold times
    • Lack of regard for the customer's time

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Don't use Vroom!

    • By Dan S.,
    • San Diego, CA,
    • Nov 19, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    I don't recommend Vroom, a real dealership with real customer service would be better. They are horrible, I get better service ordering a pizza. They said that the car would get detailed before delivery, when I picked it up there were ashes on the dashboard and the car smelled like cigarettes.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Didn't have to leave my house
    • Didn't have to get dressed
    • They had the vehicle I want
    • Poor communication, slow follow-ups, if at all
    • Bad and unfriendly service most of the time
    • $600 for shipping was too much, the delivery driver was the best person I dealt with though

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Car buying made EASY!

    • By Iyran M.,
    • Silverton, OR,
    • Nov 17, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    Buying a new car for my wife was sooo easy with Vroom. The people who assisted us along the way (mainly Richard Marintette, but others as well) were amazing in walking us through the process and helping us to make sure everything was in order, while being genuine, kind, and professional.

    Thank you Vroom! My wife is VERY happy!

    Pros and Cons:

    • Convenience
    • Transparency
    • Supportiveness
    • No complaints

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Been there, wish I hadn’t done that.

    • By Cassy L.,
    • Texas,
    • Nov 15, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    The vehicle I purchased had no mechanical problems but it was grossly misrepresented. Seat colors were grey, not black. The car was never cleaned and had multiple scratches and scuffs that were not noted online. I called in and simply asked them to cover the costs to clean the car and get the scuffs and scratches out. They fought me very hard for $375, saying they would send me touch-up paint to fix it myself instead. It wasn’t until I told them to pick their car back up that they finally agreed.

    No one ever contacted me. I made every call, from following up after paying my deposit to trying to find out when my vehicle would be delivered. I was told to expect my vehicle on a certain date (2 days after the email promised). Imagine my dismay when I called just to follow up and was told that my vehicle was out for delivery that day (a week and a half before). To make matters worse, the driver was unreachable so no one had any idea if it was a mistake or technical error. The driver called me when he was 20 minutes away and I had to scurry to get everything together.

    I really wish that I had a better experience because I have followed this company for years and had such high hopes.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Ordering online
    • Lack of good customer service
    • Horrible communication
    • Vehicle was grossly misrepresented

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


  • Great service!

    • By Ron K.,
    • Raleigh, NC,
    • Nov 9, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    Each Vroom representative with whom I interacted was knowledgeable and friendly. They made the acquisition and financing process smooth and efficient. I enjoyed the convenience of transacting online and over the phone rather than in person. Vroom has great prices. I would definitely purchase another car from Vroom in the future.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Convenience
    • Professionalism
    • Entire transaction took a while

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend


  • Worst communication ever

    • By Avi M.,
    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Nov 6, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer
    • Length of Use: Less than 3 months
    Overall Experience:

    The most incompetently trained people, zero communication structure, no structure in place when being passed from department to department. It took well over a month to get my car. I even went through their finance department to make it easier. Nope. I had my deposit refunded, and had I not called, the car I was already financed for would have been sold a second time. Disaster.

    Pros and Cons:

    • Shopping online
    • Disorganized
    • No communication
    • Clueless workers

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend


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Vroom Review: How It Works, Pros and Cons, Vroom vs. Carvana