Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Test Drive

Woman buying a car

Getting a new vehicle is an exciting experience but it can also be a stressful one. The key to ensuring you have a positive car buying experience is making sure that you are well informed and confident in your decision. Taking a car for a test drive is one of the best ways to see if the vehicle you are interested in is the right fit for you and can satisfy all of your wants and needs.

Before you go to the dealership for your test drive, do some research. Look up vehicle styles and models that you are interested in and that are in your price range. Narrow down your group to a handful of candidates that best suit your needs. Choose the ones you are interested in the most to see what you like the best. If you are stuck between two vehicle styles or models then test drive both of them and refine your options after. Be sure to keep in mind the features of the vehicle that are most important to you and take note of these during your test drive.

Make sure the vehicle is a good fit. Before you start driving, adjust the seat and mirrors and check your visibility.  Make sure you feel comfortable in the driver’s seat. Also, take this time to examine the gauges and controls and make sure they are easy for you to use and read.

Drive on different terrains. Test the cars suspension, handling and speed on various types of roads and in turns. If you drive on the highway a lot, be sure to take the vehicle on the interstate or if you regularly drive in the mountains, find a hill and see how the car climbs. Your test drive should match your driving requirements and will give you a better picture of how the vehicle will perform in your day-to-day life.

Park it – parallel, back in and nose in. Check your visibility and test how the vehicle maneuvers when you perform these tasks. If the vehicle has parking aids this will allow you to test those out as well.

Ask about an extended test drive. This is when a dealership allows you to take the car home overnight or for a weekend. This is helpful once you have narrowed down your options and are ready to make a final decision.

Bring your stuff. Make sure there is enough room in the vehicle for things and even people that you travel with frequently. This is especially important for families and children with car seats.

Take notes. Bring a notepad with you to write down what you liked and disliked immediately after the test drive so that you don’t forget. It can be hard to be objective when you are excited about getting a new ride.

Take your time. Make sure you designate enough time to take your trial spin. Test drives usually last about 20 to 30 minutes. You want to be able to take your time and get as much information as possible. It may also be helpful for you to drive all of your potential candidates back to back on the same day so you can make a better comparison between your options.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Ask your salesperson how to use key features of the vehicle and use your test drive to gain as much hands on information as possible. The more information you have the more confident you will be in making your final decision.


Shop online at Toyota of Plano or come in today for a great deal on a new Toyota!

Call 888-255-3154, and speak to our friendly staff today! Learn about our latest Toyota Specials, set up an informative test drive, get details on any vehicle, request a brochure, schedule a service appointment, discuss your trade-in or even talk financing on your next car. We are here to help you.

Toyota of Plano is your local Toyota dealer located in Plano, TX. Your satisfaction is our goal!

Still deciding on which Toyota you’d like to be driving? Searching for OEM factory rebates? Are you comparing lease programs or internet specials? Maybe you simply want our best price on a new or used car? For all of this and more, look no further than Toyota of Plano. Our team is made up of professional associates that offer you a no-pressure environment and operate with the quality you’d expect. We look forward to helping you with your next new or used car purchase.

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