Maybe you’re in the market for a new car, truck, or SUV. Perhaps a vehicle at a used car dealership is more your speed. Regardless, having a plan for your test drive can make the car shopping experience go smoother.

Here are a few tips.

Here’s What You Should Do for Your Test Drive

Make a checklist

Customers today have a wealth of research and knowledge at their fingertips to know exactly what they want in a new or pre-owned car. Are you craving an SUV with plenty of space for passengers and packages? Do you prefer a sedan with excellent fuel efficiency and driver-assistance features? Or do you want a rugged pickup with tons of towing capacity?

Whatever you’re looking for in a vehicle, make a note of it and tell the salesperson or find comparable models to test out.

Bring a buddy

When you visit the dealership, having a friend or family member with you can be helpful. They can chat with the salesperson before, during, or after the test drive. This will free you up to focus on examining the car’s build, features, and how it drives.

Inspect the outside

If you’re looking at a new car, there probably won’t be much to inspect on the model. But if you’re comparing pre-owned models, look for signs of rust or damage and more. This will give you an idea of any events in the vehicle’s past.

By walking around the exterior, you can get an idea for how the car will fit your life. Will the trunk be too small for your stuff? Are the running boards going to dirty your pants every day? These are small things you may not even realize until the vehicle is in your life.

Take it for a spin

Make your own route to truly get an idea of how the car drives. Taking a test drive for at least 30 minutes over different road surfaces and in a variety of conditions will help you get a good idea of how the car handles. Remember: This car will potentially be in your driveway, so you want a real-world evaluation of how it drives.

Bring the car to a stop, and then press the gas pedal to see how quickly the car accelerates when you need it. You should also warn the people in the car, and then hit the brakes to see how the car responds.

Test Drive Your Next Car in West Palm Beach, FL

Visit Schumacher Volvo of the Palm Beaches if you’re looking for used or new cars for sale in West Palm Beach, Florida.