At Nanaimo Wheaton GM, we see plenty of test drives off the lot, and we encourage you to test drive your next potential vehicle as well. The test drive is what tells you if there’s something going on inside a vehicle that isn’t necessarily visible on the outside. Is a part beginning to go south? Does the brake stick when you stop? These are all problems your initial test drive will sort out for you.


Before you buy your next vehicle, go through these 5 test drive tips, and be sure you’ve got yourself a winner.



1. Clicks, Bangs, and Ratting


It doesn’t matter if a car is new or used, it can still have a few kinks to work out, and the test drive is exactly where you’ll find them. As you drive, listen for sounds that are out of the ordinary; if you can hear something rattling against the hum of the engine, something is wrong.


If you hear thumping, it could be the sound of an uneven tire, where tread has worn thin on one area. If there’s squealing when you brake, the brake pads need to be replaced. A clunking near the front end could mean a damaged ball joint, which will lead to further breakage if you hit a pot hole on the road.


Fortunately, sounds aren’t always the sign of a bad car; if caught early, all of these issues can be fixed and you could land yourself a pretty great ride for a discounted price.



2. Pulling to One Side



The test drive should be a fun and relaxing experience, but this isn’t always the case if your vehicle starts a game of tug-o-war with the road. There are a few different reasons why a car pulls to one side. It could mean that it’s time for a wheel alignment, or it might be unequal tire pressure in the wheels. Whatever the reason, it’s a sign that the car you’re testing needs to be fixed before purchase. Sometimes the pull is very slight, but if it isn’t looked at early, it could get worse.



3. Comfort on the Road


How do you feel behind the wheel of a potential new car? The test drive will tell you exactly how comfortable your ride will be on your next commute to work. Take the car through a few different parts of town to get a feel for how it handles on different levels of terrain. You want a car you relax and sip coffee in, not a car that’s going to result in your wearing your coffee by the time you reach the office.



4. Just Your Style



No matter how great that price sticker is, not every car works for every individual. A test drive will help you visualize yourself behind the wheel of a vehicle better than simply sitting in the driver seat will. Shift gears, take a few turns, and feel the road beneath your ride; This is the perfect time to find out what you really think of those leather seats and chrome trim. If it turns out that it isn’t your style, test drive another until you find one you like.



5. Safety First



A huge factor to consider during the test drive is safety; both for you, and your family. Is there enough space in the back for a rear facing car seat? How many airbags are located around the vehicle? Did you feel comfortable checking your blind spots and gaging the distance between your car and the car in front of you?


Your sales person can point out all of the main safety features before the test drive, but if you don’t feel safe behind the wheel, it may not be the right car for you.


For more information on Nanaimo Wheaton GM and our current vehicle lineup, visit our official page, and contact us today. Our friendly staff is always happy to answer any questions you might have, and help you find the best new vehicle for you and your family.