Took our leased car to CarMax

So, just took our '13 MKX to CarMax to see how much they would offer. We got a very strong offer, equivalent to our payoff (original lease was $0 down, $0 out of pocket) and we accepted. Which was great, until we called Lincoln Financial.

The lease is done through an offshoot of Ford (I believe), CAB East, and they would NOT allow the transaction. They said that we must buy the car from the original dealer, and THEN go back to CarMax to sell it to them. Obviously, that would be a stupid idea. The guy at CarMax was visibly surprised.

We have 2 months left on the lease, but just don’t need the car, so were hoping to be rid of the last 2 payments.

So, we’ll tough it out. Unless someone has found a way around this.

At any rate, very happy with the CarMax offer and friendly process, if anyone is considering doing something similar.

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What does it say in the contract itself?

That doesn’t make sense. Aren’t all Ford leases run through a subsidiary like that? Check your original lease agreement for the buyout/payoff terms. CarMax’s money is as good as yours.

Have you tried hanging up and calling again? Maybe just ask for the buy out without letting them know about selling it.

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Thanks for the replies. They said they would accept payment, but would NOT release the title to CarMax.

It is uncommon but not u heard of, some banks don’t allow 3rd party payoffs and some don’t allow lease assumptions either.

Ford (and Lincoln) has this weird policy of not allowing the sale of a leased vehicle to anyone but the dealer that originated the lease if within 120 days of lease end. Who knows why that is.


Case closed! Thanks bro1999

They want to ensure they give the dealer a chance to sell or lease you another one lol

Bmw will also not allow an assumption within 6 months of lease end.

This is good information, very desperate on Ford/Lincoln’s part and I would def take this into account when leasing a car from them. They’re basically trying to trap you into their system to make it harder to get out. I would probably think twice about leasing on of their cars given this information. Thanks for sharing.


If it’s any consolation, Ford’s august sales numbers was down by 5% lol

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actually now that you mention it…it actually does put a smile on my face

I had a similar situation happen in 2012 with a leased 2011 Maxima that I hated (long story). I went to CarMax, got my appraisal and confirmed with their business office that I could turn in a leased vehicle to them. I went shopping and leased my next vehicle the next day. When I returned to CarMax to turn my Maxima in they notified me that they couldn’t turn it in because Nissan would only release the vehicle to a Nissan dealer. I started to get pretty worried since I was going to be stuck with 2 cars (I was 9 months into a 36 month least on the Maxima and the new vehicle was a 24 month lease so I would have had the Maxima even after the new lease was turned in).

Anyways I got creative and realized CarMax has some new vehicle dealerships in Maryland. I brought this up with CarMax and asked if they could simply turn it in here and do the paperwork through their Nissan dealer in Maryland. They refused so I contacted their Nissan dealer, explained the situation, and was assured that if I drove the vehicle there (from Southwest Florida) they would trade it in at the agreed upon price even with the extra 1200 miles from the trip. I booked a one way return flight from BWI and made the 19 hour drive up there. Luckily everything went as promised, but it certainly was a sticky situation.

Long story short, if you are trying to trade in a leased vehicle to CarMax do it BEFORE you lease your new vehicle :slight_smile:


Or even better, at the same time you lease/buy a new vehicle. Some states (like MD), will give you a tax credit on the sales tax due on the new vehicle if you trade in your old vehicle as well. So if you want to buy a $30k car, and you get $15k trade in value on your current car, you would only pay tax on $15k for the new car instead of 30k.


Anyone know if Kia would allow me to sell the car off to carmax or some other company? I still have 11 months on the lease, but since I need an SUV, I figured I’d try.

I know I’m bringing up an old topic, but I was just told by Carmax that they would not buy out a Ford lease at all due to Ford not selling to them, not just within the 120 day period.


Wow, that’s good to know (and disappointing). I usually sell my leases back to Carmax a few months ahead of the end date and make a few bucks. I have a Focus ST lease ending in about 6 months, I guess I’ll find another way.

I followed up with Carmax corporate and got conflicting reports from them. I’m waiting to hear back from Ford Credit and I’m going to actually go into Carmax after talking to corporate. It’s possible my local location is incorrect about their policy, so don’t write it off yet.

Would love to hear the outcome of this as a current Ford leasee who wants to do this in a couple of years

I too would love to hear the outcome. Tried the very same thing on my end. 16k miles on the odometer on a 36month 36k mile lease that’s due back in 7 months. Set an appointment at Carmax. They called me within an hour and basically told me not to come in, they can’t buy fords.

I’m not sure how this carries over to a private buy/sell transaction though. I’m under the impression, due to lack of being able to get clear answers, that even in a private transaction, I’d need to finance the car first (…from the originating dealer) then I can sell it. A fiasco. This’ll be my last ford lease.