I love a test drive. Not that I’m a tyre kicker or anything but I like to try out a good few cars before I settle on the right one. So does my colleague Laura (hi Laura!), who I recently overheard tried out around 20 cars before buying her last one.
Well I don’t know about you but, as the legend that is Kylie Minogue sang during her Stock Aitken Waterman heyday, ‘I’ve got to be……got to be certain.’
Buy how do you know what you’re looking for? I have to say that I usually look at the interior first. I know, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, or in this case the inside dust jacket. But if it’s lime green pleather with pink stitching, I’m out. But a walnut dash and a gold gear stick, now you’re talking.
There are of course other things that you should be on the lookout for during your test drive and here is a selection of just some of them.
- Allow at least half an hour to get a feel for the car and drive along different types of road, motorways, B roads, the Nürburgring, you get the picture.
- Can you get in and out of the car easily? I’m not saying you’re a bit of a porker that can’t get in and out of a car without lubricating the door frames. No. It’s just some cars are smaller than others.
- Try reversing into a parking space to make sure you have all round vision. Though most modern cars cheat now and have sensors to help guide you in. Don’t know you’re born you lot. (Old man grumble).
- You might want to put the family in the back if this is part of your usual routine. And when I say your usual routine I don’t mean let your two year old puke in the back, get a speeding fine and munch on a McChicken Sandwich in the front.
- Is the boot sill low enough to get your shopping/ cow in? The car needs to be practical, so check this out
- Is it easy to fold down/remove the back seats when you absolutely just need to fit in an oversized Ikea flat packed wardrobe into your car? (Other Swedish furniture suppliers are available).
- Are the instruments clear enough or are you as likely to turn on the air-con as eject someone from the passenger seat?
As I say, I love a test drive, which is just as well as I have driven more than a few cars as the basis for this very blog. So much so that they have given birth to their own section of the blog. I hear it’s where Jeremy Clarkson gets all his banter from.
Here are just a few choice cuts to get your teeth into.
Audi enters the hybrid market with devastating results.
Has a kick-ass sat nav that lets you write out your destination with your finger (though Ashby-de-la-Zouch proved a bit tricky.)
Electric charge cap is revealed by a sliding Audi badge on the bumper. A bit like a James Bond car revealing a mini rocket launcher but less fun. (More on 007’s choice of runabouts in an upcoming blog).
Hyundai gets all sexy with the new model i20.
Extra room means it passes the Ikea flat pack challenge with flying colours.
You can fit a pack of pork chops and a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey into the glove box.
Renault takes the city car to the next level with the super funky and much loved Twingo.
Clever and affordable multi-media solution utilises your smart phone through the Renault R&GO app.
Handling revolutionised by rear mounted engine.
Has a bonnet that is smaller than a baguette.
Volkswagen creates limited edition car of the future and blows current MPG figures out of the water.
Most economical production car ever built.
The car of the future has Back to the Future DeLorean-style doors and TV screens instead of wing mirrors.
Brings the West End of Newcastle to a stand-still.
Well, I hope you enjoy these informative test drives and have enjoyed your journey in to the random recesses of my mind. Follow this blog, there’s just too much fun to keep to myself…….Seriously, I’ll go mad.
Take a look at all my past test drives here.