A test drive is your opportunity to make sure all you have seen, read, and heard about the vehicle suits your needs perfectly and is, in fact, everything you hoped it would be.
CMH Nissan Hillcrest has compiled a guideline of what to expect on a test drive.
- Sit in the driver’s seat and adjust it( and the mirrors) to the perfect position for you. The seating position is vital for safer and more comfortable driving.
- Go through all the switches and controls. Understand what each one does and ensure you can reach them easily without taking your eyes off the road.
- Check forward, rearward, and side vision – identify where your blind spots are.
- Your drive route should include urban, rural, and highway terrains, preferably on familiar roads.
- The purpose of the test drive is for you to get a good feel of the full functionality of the car and check for any defects.
Test Drive Tips
- If you are in a manual car, check how hard it is to push in the clutch. Can you easily control the release?
- Is the pull-off smooth? This applies equally to an automatic.
- Do the gears slot seamlessly and accurately into place in a manual? Are you comfortable with the placement and action of the gear lever?
- In an automatic, are the changes up (and down) smooth?
- Do the brakes stop the car smoothly?
All of this should transpire on urban roads, in traffic, and with the kind of stop/start driving you would experience daily.
Importance of a Test Drive: Moving up to a rural road, you can check:
- How does the car feel over bumpy surfaces often found on rural roads? Does it ‘iron’ out the bumps, or are you being shaken about like a leaf?
- When you turn into a corner, does the steering respond accurately with the car going exactly where you have pointed it?
- Is there a lot of body roll during cornering?
- Does the seat keep you firmly in place?
The highway drive is an opportunity to check all of the listed items at a higher speed as well as look at:
- How is the vehicle affected by side wind?
- Does it track straight and true or tend to ‘wander’ on the highway?
- Are you easily able to maintain highway speeds?
This will indicate how you and the vehicle you desire will happily ‘gel’ together for many kilometres of motoring.