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Things to Keep in Mind When Test Driving a Car

By: Louise Mosqueda0 comments

Before you buy a car for yourself, you will want to know everything about it, especially if it is a second-hand vehicle. Aside from its history, body and engine condition, you should also know how well the car handles.

This is where test driving comes in. You will take the time and effort to drive the car around, get a feel for how it handles to know if you think the car is worth the price the seller is asking for it. The question now is, what do you look for while driving? Here are a few of them:



Do you have a car in mind? Take your time to do your homework on it. Find out what others are saying about it and what to expect from the specific model. This is where resources like car forums, Youtube video reviews and more can come in handy.

That’s because they can give you an idea about the car even before you see it in person or sit behind the wheel.

If you’re undecided, research at least 2-3 vehicles to give you a vast selection before going to see the dealer.

Set an appointment

set an appointment

Once you’ve jotted down notes about the cars, the next step is to find a reliable dealer. You can see one near your home, or you can ask for recommendations from friends and family.

Give the dealer a ring and ask about the cars you are looking to buy. At this stage, ask them if you can take the cars out for a spin before you decide to buy.

You can also ask the dealer about the mileage and when they got the car. It’s also important to inform the dealer that you are also looking at other dealers’ offers.

Once you’ve asked everything you needed, set a date with the dealer and spend that day test driving the vehicles you are considering to buy.

Get acquainted

get acquainted

On the agreed day, meet with the dealer and let him show you the car you want to drive. Check it out and look it over. See how different it is in person versus online pictures. Go over the vehicle inside and out.

Some of the things to check during this stage include:

  • Doors and trunk space. Are the doors easy to open and are in excellent condition? What about trunk space? Is there enough space in the trunk for you?
  • Legroom. It’s important to be comfortable in your car. So, make sure that it has enough space for your legs and your passengers. Another thing to check is if it is relatively easy to attach a baby seat especially if you have young children.
  • Safety features. Lastly, check the safety features available. Check the seatbelts if they are functioning correctly. It’s also important to ask about the airbags and about any other electronic-safety feature the car may have.



After you’ve taken all the time you needed to check the car inside and out, it is now time to get behind the wheel and drive it around the block a few times.

Before you take off, observe the inside of the car from a driver’s perspective. Check to see if the features laid out will be comfortable for your day to day drive.

Another thing to check is the features inside. Do you think they are worth it regarding the price, or you can do without them?

While you’re driving the car, check how the controls feel. Is the steering okay? What about the brakes and other pedals? Is the gear shift sticking? Is the AC keeping everything nice and fresh? These can make or break a deal on the car.

Also, keep an ear out for any strange sounds you feel shouldn’t be there as well as controls. Make sure you are comfortable with everything and have made some mental notes to say to the dealer once you get back to the lot.

Give feedback

Once you’ve tested out the cars, give your feedback to the dealer and tell him which car you would like to take home.

If the car has minor issues like small scratches, ask them if they will take care of it. If not, ask for a lower cost.

When you both agree on a price and are both happy with the outcome, congratulations! You have just successfully test driven and are about to buy a car of your own.

If you decide that you like the vehicle enough to drive it yourself every day, then don’t wait and get it with the help of a reliable car financing service. Talk to us, and we can get you in a car within at least 24 hours.

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