The Test Drive

The Test Drive

These days you can order a car online and it will be delivered to you, just like that. So efficient and convenient. However, the test drive remains as popular as ever and a great way to ‘try before you buy’.

To ensure the test drive goes smoothly, a bit of preparation is ideal. If the car salesperson is not accompanying you, have an idea of where you will drive the car. Taking your Kia for a run with a mixture of town and a bit of a stretch on a by-pass is ideal. However, don’t plan to do the big supermarket shop or take the family on a long trip up to John O’Groats — that’s not on. Also, don’t eat or drink on the test drive. You need to be aware of what you are trying out and it’s unfair to leave the steering wheel sticky.

It may be tempting to blast out the tunes on the Suzuki stereo during your test drive, but it’s advisable to listen to the engine and not have distractions. If the salesperson is with you, they don’t want to have to shout to you over the music and anyway, it might not be to their taste! Let them show you how the audio works in the safety of the showroom.

What is useful though is to take along when trying the Qashqai or Swift anything that you are likely to be carrying regularly. Items like a push chair, baby car seat or golf bag are some things not often considered in the excitement of the purchase. There is folklore among car dealerships of items that customers have brought along which have made their hair stand on end, including a 12ft snake, a complete drum kit, a Great Dane, a rifle, a mattress and a pair of slippers to drive in (Source: CarGurus).

Things you should do on a test drive are:-

Check you are insured, the dealer may have cover for this, but you do need to check.

Take your time and adjust the steering wheel and seating until you are comfortable.

During the drive itself, check the steering, suspension, brakes and gearbox. Listen out for anything unusual and monitor how the car behaves. (Source:

Finally, some anecdotes to make you smile (or gulp)! The one about the man who, halfway through the test drive, asked to swap with the salesperson so he can feel what it’s like to be a passenger, then claims to feel sick and jumps out at the next lights; turns out he just wanted a lift into town. Or the one about the couple who test drove a Mercedes, came back and complained the ‘check engine’ light was on and left; turns out they had removed $2,500 worth of engine parts to have their own Mercedes fixed. Finally, if you are going to stop and look at the engine, make sure you close the bonnet properly — a driver was going quite fast and the bonnet flew up and smashed into the windscreen — fortunately he was unhurt. (Source: Bryant Motors).

So, a few things to bear in mind, but an experience that can give you the confidence that you have chosen the right car. PS: We would advise that you do not drive in slippers!

To book a test drive with us, click here.

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