One of the most exciting parts about shopping for a new car is the test drive. There’s nothing quite like hands on experience to see if it’s the right car for you. Before you head to the dealership to do some test drives, taking some time to prepare will go a long ways to make sure you end up with the car that will provide you and your family many years of happy driving. Here are some tips the get the most out of any test drive.
Before your get behind the wheel for a test drive, it’s important to take some time to figure out exactly what you want your car to do for you. If you can answer these questions, you’ll be well on your way to your dream car!
ASSESS YOUR NEEDS
- How Do You Plan on Using Your New Car? City driving? Long distance commuting? Carpooling? Family road trips?
- How Many People Does the Car Need to Fit? Just you? You, your spouse, your 4 kids and your dog?
- How Many Miles a Day/Month/Year/ Do You Plan on Driving?
- Do You Need 4 Wheel Drive or All Wheel Drive? Do you plan on driving off road? In the mountains? To go skiing?
- What Style of Vehicle? SUV? Coupe? Sedan? Minivan? Convertible?
- What Options are Important to You? Leather seats? Upgraded wheels and tires? What colour?
CLOSELY INSPECT THE VEHICLE
Before you take it for a spin, take some time to give it a good inspection both inside and out, especially if it’s a used vehicle.
- Outside Appearance. How’s it look? Is the paint in good shape? Any dents or dings? Any rust?
- Interior. How does the interior look? Is the upholstery in good shape? Are there any stains or off smells?
ON THE ROAD
When it’s finally time to get behind the wheel and take it for a test drive, it’s important to remember to drive it like you normally drive. Remember that you’ll be driving this car every single day, so you want to make sure you’re going to like it.
Try to keep an analytical approach when test driving the vehicle. Keep an eye out for any potential problems or anything draws concern. Here are some things to consider while you go on your test drive.
- Ride Comfort. How does it feel? Are the seats comfortable? Can you see well out of all sides of the vehicle? Do you feel safe driving the car?
- Noise. Are there any strange sounds coming from the engine? Any rattles, squeaks or buzzes?
- Power/Acceleration. Does the car accelerate smoothly? Does it feel like it has adequate power? Does it shift smoothly?
- Braking. When you step on the brakes does it slow down smoothly? Does the brakes stick at all? Do you feel like you could stop in an emergency situation?
- Handling. How does it handle? Does it steer smoothly? Do you feel like you can control the car easily?
ASSESS THE DRIVE
After your initial inspection, after the road test, take some time to reflect on your experience with the car. Do you see yourself happily driving that car everyday? Did it successfully meet your requirements and desires? Or were you underwhelmed?
Buying a car is a very big financial decision to make, so its absolutely crucial that you’re honest with yourself about the cars you test drive. If you loved the car the moment you saw it and the test drive blew you away, you should get it! If not, keep searching, test drive some others.
The perfect car is out there for you. If you’re ready to start searching for your perfect car, stop by Orangeville Honda to go for a test drive in one of our new or used Honda cars.