Test drive your next new car confidently with these 8 tipsBy Kijiji Autos
You can do all the research in the world and read everything the experts say, but there's really only one way to find out if a car is right for you: Take it out for a spin. Here are eight steps for an effective test drive!
When testing vehicles, car journalists often drive for several hundred kilometres. But that’s hard to do when you’re shopping for a new vehicle. That means you have to arrive prepared, know what to check for and have some time set aside.
Before you get behind the wheel
1- Inspect the vehicle
Even if the car is new, it’s important to look around and make sure everything is in place. This also gives you an idea of the dimensions of the vehicle, which is essential in traffic. Be sure to inspect the tires since they affect road performance. Low profile tires, for example, will generally mean a less comfortable ride.
2- Inspect the passenger compartment and electronic accessories
Take a look at the accessories to make sure you understand how they work and that using them won’t mean taking your eyes off the road for too long. Also, use the opportunity to connect your phone to the multimedia system (Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto) to check the quality. Ask the dealers for explanations. They can demonstrate all the on-board systems and comfort features that you didn’t notice right away.
3- Check the space
4- Plan your route
Ideally, travel the same route you do every day, including parts of the city and the highway. This will allow you to better judge the handling of the car in the situations where you’ll drive it the most. The dealers can also guide you. They know the cars and their potential and can show you the roads that will get the most out of the one you’re testing. They’ll also answer all your questions along the way.
Once you’re behind the wheel
5- Find your driving position
Place both hands on the steering wheel at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., rest your shoulder blades on the backrest and make sure to keep your arms at a 90-degree angle. This is the ideal position. Adjust the mirrors and position the steering wheel correctly.
6- Listen to the sounds: engine, exhaust, etc.
Also, listen to the car’s rolling noises, such as the sound of tires on the road. If the noise is so loud you have to turn up the radio, imagine what it would be like trying to have a conversation with passengers on board.
7- Test the brakes and accelerator
A quick test at the beginning will give you an idea of how responsive the car is. More forceful braking will tell you how it behaves in an emergency. Remember to try the hand brake too. Take the opportunity to ride on rough roads to see if the suspension meets your expectations.
8- Check the steering
Check that the car is responsive when driving in a straight line. If not, there could be a problem. Also try parallel parking, and you’ll have a better idea of the vehicle’s handling and size. If you can, do a full turn of the wheel and drive in a circle to test the turning radius.
Once you’ve completed these eight steps, you’ll know if the car is right for you. But don’t rush to buy it. Test other vehicles as well, and compare them to make a more informed choice. Kijiji Autos can help you choose the car that’s right for you.
Easily find your next ride on Kijiji AutosSearch now
How to buy your next car online in Canada
As manufacturers and dealers recognize that the global pandemic is a long-term reality, the auto industry is rolling out more services to buy a car online in Canada. From the comfort of your own home, you can easily browse the latest models, apply for financing, make a purchase and get your brand...
10 popular SUVs and crossovers in Canada
There's no doubt that Canadians navigate a wide variety of weather and lifestyle conditions every day. This makes a fun, practical and comfortable SUV or crossover a solid vehicle choice, from coast to coast. Listed in no particular order, check out these 10 popular SUV and crossover models to...
The best features of 10 popular hatchbacks
If you are in the market for a hatchback, you'll want to check out this overview of these 10 models and the features that make them so popular. Kijiji Autos will help you confidently choose between the best hatchbacks, including used, sporty and hybrid models – whatever is a priority for you.
10 popular vans in Canada
Cargo vans and minivans can meet the needs of many drivers. There are plenty of models to choose from at various price points, which can make it difficult to pick the van that's right for you. Whether it's passenger capacity or cargo space you're after, Kijiji Autos is here to help with your search.
Top 10 popular pickup trucks in Canada
The pickup truck has always been a symbol of utility and strength, and lately, many models have become luxury family vehicles that leave nothing to be desired. In no particular order, these popular brands represent a range of available features, engine types and towing capacities. Check out the...
10 popular sedans in Canada
Sedans are versatile vehicles that meet a variety of driving needs. Are you looking for a sedan in your area? With so many different styles, sizes and price points to choose from, it can be difficult to pick a model from such a long list of award-winning vehicles. In no particular order, these...
What you should know about these 10 popular wagons
If you are looking to buy a wagon, explore Kijiji Autos list of these popular models, and the features that make them a great choice for your next car. This list is in no particular order and will help you easily choose between great wagons, whether you’re looking for luxury, affordable, small...
9 popular coupes in Canada
Sporty and sleek, the coupe is a popular two- or four-door car that puts the fun back into driving. Fuel-efficient and compact, this body style is designed for performance. Are you looking for a coupe for sale near you? In no particular order, here is a list of 9 popular coupes in Canada...
7 popular convertible cars in Canada
Convertibles are fun and adventurous cars that are perfect for cruising around when the weather is great. Are you looking to buy a convertible? From roadsters to off-roaders, convertibles (or cabriolets) are a great choice for those who love driving for its own sake. Can't decide which...
Things first-time car owners should know
A car can seem like a complicated machine, and most maintenance jobs are best left to a mechanic, but if you’re a first-time car owner about to buy that perfect first car on Kijiji Autos, here are some things you should know. Editor’s note: This article has been newly updated. However, there...