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Tips for testing a car before purchase

For over two decades, the friendly staff at Werribee Mitsubishi have been selling and servicing new and used vehicles in Hoppers Crossing, Werribee and surrounds. When it comes to buying a new or used vehicle, we know that there’s nothing more important to our customers than peace of mind – and it all starts with a test drive.

It’s usually not enough to browse online and find out what specs suit your needs. By coming into our modern showroom and seeing the car in person, you can find out whether the car really does meet your needs. You might find that the vehicle seems a lot smaller in real life, or the colour looks different than in photos. Or maybe it handles too light or heavy for your driving style.

We’ve put together our most important tips for testing a car before you purchase, so that when you arrive at our Werribee dealership, you’ll know exactly what to look out for and how to make your test drive count.


When you decide to buy a new car, it’s often a long-term investment, therefore it’s important to get the most out of it every day. Is the car easy to get into and out of? Do you normally have a few children in the back? What about those weekend camping trips? Thinking about your needs for right now as well as for years to come will ensure that you make the best choice possible.

Comfort inside the car is equally as important. Make sure you test out the adjustability of the seats, the amount of legroom, and how easily you can reach the steering wheel and pedals. What about visibility and mirrors?

If you have to do headstands and body twists just to get in and out of the car, maybe consider a larger model.

Test out special functions

Our next tip for testing a car before purchasing is to poke and prod around inside. Every car has a slightly different dashboard, so you need to make sure that you’re happy with whatever you choose. If something feels awkward to you, it’s good to think about whether you can easily get used to it or not. Check to see if the vehicle has enough (or any) charging ports or special functions. If in doubt, ask one of our friendly team to explain it for you.

Vehicles like the Pajero Sport offer cutting edge technology, Apple Watch connectivity and LCD display. Are those things too advanced for your needs? Or are you looking for extra features?

Plan your route

Seeing how the vehicle fairs on different types of roads will give you the best idea of how it really handles. It could feel perfect on a freeway, but what about at slower speeds and on different surfaces? How about turning corners? Planning your preferred route in advance to include roads that you normally drive on can be a really great idea too.

Make a list of your needs

Some people are old school and prefer popping a CD into their car, whereas others want to connect their Bluetooth. Making a list of your ‘must haves’ before coming along to the dealership can be a good reminder and means that you won’t get caught up in the moment. Whether you can’t live without a sunroof, you can’t stand the thought of not having leather seats, or you just have to have a digital speedometer – bringing a list to your test drives means you won’t miss out.

Examine the exterior

Sure, you’ve had a smooth test drive in the most comfortable vehicle you’ve ever been in and you’re officially in love - but do you like how the car looks from the outside? For those buying a used model - are there any noticeable bumps or dents that you didn’t expect?

Bring a second pair of eyes

If you’re already invested in a new vehicle purchase, it can be hard to approach your test drive with an unbiased view. Bringing a friend or loved one along can help provide a second opinion and be particularly useful if they’re someone who may also drive the car. They might notice things you’ve missed – especially if they have good car knowledge.

We’re here to help

We understand that buying a new or used car is a big decision and it can often feel overwhelming. Before making your next exciting purchase, we encourage all of our customers to ask as many questions as possible and never rush into any decision.

Whether you’re hoping to stop by our Werribee Mitsubishi showroom for a test drive, or just for a browse, we’re always happy to help you make a decision that’s right for you.