How to take a proper test drive…

When you’re shopping for a pre-owned vehicle, it’s important to take the time for a proper test drive. This is your chance to get a feel for how the car or truck handles on the road. You’ll also want to check out all the features and make sure everything is in working order. Here are a few things to keep in mind when test driving your next vehicle!

  1. Bring a friend along. It’s always helpful to have someone there to help you check out the car. They can also help spot any potential defects as well as take notes for you when driving. It might help to let them drive it as well.
    Plan your drive route.
  2. Make sure to take the car or truck out on different types of roads. This will help you get a feel for how it handles in different conditions. If you drive on the highway every day to work, you’ll want to be sure and test it on the highway. You’ll also want to test out the brakes and acceleration. Can you pass easily if you need to? Try braking hard (in a safe place, of course) and make sure the anti-lock brakes function properly.
  3. Is it the level of comfort you expect? While you’re out on your test drive, make sure to focus on comfort as well. Is there enough legroom? What about headspace and storage space? Is the level of road noise acceptable?
  4. Check the features. Make sure all the features work properly. Test out the radio, CD player (if equipped) lights & wipers and other items in the vehicle .
  5. Can you park it easily? It can become a nightmare if you find out after the fact that is has a horrible turning radius, or is a pain to parallel park. Take the time to drive into the nearest shopping center and try it out.
  6. Bring a mechanic along. If you are really interested in the vehicle, it might help to bring your mechanic along with you on the test drive. They can check out any potential problems that may not be obvious as well as make recommendations for repairs or replacements should there be an issue discovered during inspection time!
  7. Don’t rush the test drive! A good test drive may take more than 30 or 40 minutes. If you’re in a hurry, you might want to come back later. Rushing can cause problems with your test drive and lead to missing important details such as how comfortable the car is or whether all systems work properly. Be sure you’ve got plenty of time before taking off for that long awaited test drive!

Taking the time to think about and plan your next test drive can pay big dividends. Any reputable car dealership will allow you the proper time to do your due diligence. If they don’t, move on to the next!