The test drive is the most important part of the car buying process. Whether you are buying a brand new or pre-owned car in the UAE, you need to take the time to take the vehicle you are eyeing for a test drive.
This is because the test drive will help you answer two crucial questions: can you see yourself driving this vehicle, and does it have any issues? When you know the answers to these questions, you will be one step closer to buying the right car.
Test Driving a Pre-Owned Car
Taking a pre-owned car out for a test drive is more than simply driving it in and around the car dealer’s parking lot.
To ensure your test drive will enable you to make the right decision, follow these tips:
1. Bring a test drive buddy
If you are buying a car for your family, bring your spouse or another family member with you who knows how to drive.
Although you have the primary responsibility of evaluating the vehicle, it can be easy to become too excited while test driving that you may miss some issues. Your test drive companion can help you spot any red flags while you are off and on the road.
Your driving buddy can take notes for you during the test drive. And if they will also be using the car you end up buying, make sure they get their turn to test drive it as well.
2. Get comfortable
Once you have the key, take a few minutes to feel comfortable in the driver’s seat first before turning on the engine.
Start by moving the seat to a more comfortable position. Adjust the mirrors, check the position of all the controls, and make sure you can use the pedals, the shifter, and the turn signals correctly. Turn on the air conditioner to check if it is working properly, too.
Additionally, try the vehicle’s infotainment system. Adjust the radio and try pairing your phone with the system using Bluetooth.
Although these details may seem trivial, if you want to get the most out of your car, make sure all components are working properly before buying it.
3. Plan your route beforehand
A day or two before your scheduled test drive, plan your route. Look for routes that cover a mix of different roads or environments: a highway, bumpy road, stop-and-go traffic, etc.
By doing so, you will be able to drive at a range of speeds and allow you to get a feel for how the car handles different surfaces.
Additionally, take the vehicle through one or two crowded parking lots. Don’t forget to practice parking to get a feel of how the car handles.
4. Take note of anything out of the ordinary
While driving the car, be on the lookout for strange sounds such as squeaks, squeals knocks, and grinding sounds. These are sounds that you should never hear if you are buying one of the best cars for sale in Dubai, or wherever you are located.
When you’re on a rough road, listen for any upsetting squeaks or groans from the chassis. If you’re on the highway, pay attention to how noisy the car is. When you get off the highway, take note of the car’s steering and handling, and observe for any excess vibrations.
If the car is emitting a lot of unusual sounds and the wheel isn’t turning as smoothly as expected, make sure you take them into consideration come decision time.
In case you notice a lot of things that are out of the ordinary, it may be best to look at and test drive your other options.
5. Test drive the car again
If you really like the car, take it out for a spin again.
Test drive it at night. By doing so, you will be able to try and see the vehicle’s headlights and experience how the car runs at night.
The test drive will play a huge role in helping you decide whether the car is right for you or not. Even if the whole process will only take 30 minutes or less, take it seriously. Inspect everything that you can check and always be alert. Only then can you be sure if you will be buying a good car.