What to check for on your test drive
Before you make a final decision on which new car you want to buy, make sure you take it for a thorough test drive. It is a good idea to trial several similar cars so you can make comparisons.
Talk to the dealer before you head off to make sure you understand your legal liability in the event of an accident on your test drive.
A good test drive will take at least 20 minutes and cover at least 10km. If possible, your route should include some stop-start driving, rough roads, bends and highways. Test the vehicle’s steering and visibility with a U-turn and parallel parking.
Your new car may be with you for a long time, so make sure you the seats and seatbelts are comfortable.
You might also find it helpful to take a friend with you – they can offer a second opinion, and may pick up something you miss.
If you have young children, take a baby seat with you to test whether it is easy to install. It is also worthwhile taking the pram along to make sure it fits easily into the boot.
Ultimately, no matter how much you enjoy test driving your new car, make sure you stay composed. Keeping a level head will help you when it comes time to negotiate a deal.
And don’t forget to try the radio.