So, car looks great, you can picture yourself in it .. and now, most important part - it is time for a test drive.
Don’t dismiss test drive as just part of sales process, taking a test drive is most important part of buying a car. Yet so many people dismiss it as formality!
And if you don’t believe me, I (embarrassingly!) write from experience! The car that I’d lusted over, that ‘dream’ car that I’d so avidly researched, I sat in it in car dealers, fell in love and signed up on dotted line (without taking a test drive – I didn’t feel I needed to)!
Sadly, my ‘dream’ car, that I used for a 60 mile round trip twice a day for next three years had a blind spot! The day I part exchanged that car, I test drove every possible replacement for my ‘dream-turned-nightmare’ car!
So, how do you get most from your test drive?
First of, if you are refused a drive, don’t buy car. Do you want to be stuck with a car that you are not comfortable in; one where seat is too low and gives you backache? One that has a blind spot?!
The ideal road test should ideally be at least five miles to give you a chance to experience different speeds and road types and for mechanics to warm up properly.
What to check When test driving from a car dealership, most do have their own insurance – but do double check!
If buying privately, check on your own policy that you are insured and check that car you are looking to buy has an MOT and up-to-date road tax.
Check condition of car – look for any dinks, dents, scratches. Look at condition of tyres and look under bonnet. (It is always best - wherever you are buying a car from – to have someone who knows a bit about them to come with you and give you a second opinion).
First of all, watch current owner drive car – this will give you a feel for how car is treated. For example, someone who ‘rides’ clutch means that if you do buy car, you may have to fork out for a new clutch soon.