Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - perleman
Hi All,
I went to look at a 3.0 Z4 - 2nd hand. The guy wouldn't let me test drive it as my insurance is 3rd party cover only - he said if I made a deposite he'd add me to his cover for a day. I can see where he's coming from as it's a fast car, but is this normal? And as I'm about to sell my 4 year old Golf GTI is this the norm when people come to see it? I remember when we went to buy my mate's car (a 10 year old VR6) the bloke was pretty free and easy about letting us drive it although obviously it was only worht 10% of the BMW's value.

Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - stunorthants26
As much as it may seem he was being arkward, he was actually using good practice and protecting his asset - he has no idea who you are afterall.
If I was you, I would have the car fully inspected at that sort of value as they will be insured to drive his car and also will do all the other checks aswell.
If you havent driven that model, use main dealers to test the model and an inspecter to do all the checking for your chosen car.

I dont let people test drive any car im selling ( unless they have proof of full insurance ) but im always happy to take them on a long test drive and do any tests they wish me to - this was after some idiot who drove my car like a maniac on test drive and I refused to sell the car to him in the end.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - perleman
Thanks for this - also, if I give him a deposit to secure it is it reasonable to ask it not to be driven any more / or driven over an agreed milage?

Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - local yokel
Bear in mind that while you are clearly a sensible and serious buyer, there are those out there who'll see it as an opportunity to play at "test pilot" for an hour. A year old Z4 is a rather different proposition to a nearly worn-out Golf.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - bell boy
you can get a days insurance fully comp for £14 from norwich union apply online, download your cover note.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - Simon
You have insurance, but it only covers the damage to other peoples property and not his Z4 that you will be driving.

This is a common problem in the private sales of motorcycles. You can't exactly be a passenger on a test drive whilst the owner of it drives it and operates it to show you that it all works etc, well not with any reasonable effect anyway. Obviously with bikes there is also the greater potential to damage them, by dropping them or crashing etc.

So a common solution to this is to leave the owner of the bike with the full asking price in cash in his hand. That way if you trash the bike, then you have automatically bought it. Once you arrive back from your test run in one piece, the owner gives you your cash back and then you can either do a deal on it or walk away from it.

This is more practical in the biking world because generally you are talking only up around say £5000 tops, depending on what you are looking at, but with cars, especially a Z4 then you will be talking about a damn sight more. Maybe though you could propose a deal of somekind along these lines with the seller of this Z4.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - local yokel
I can see the above working, but I can also see some major problems with it if a clever con-artist was to use it to best effect.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - Simon
>>I can see the above working, but I can also see some major problems with it if a clever con-artist was to use it >>to best effect.

Yes, so can I. I think its a case of keeping your wits about you as much as anything else. You have to satisfy yourself that the seller is genuine, it is his vehicle to sell and that he will stick to the agreement of giving you your cash back on return from the test run.

I have never used this method myself, but I can relate to a number of people who have. I have never heard of anyone having any problems using this method. But there's always a first!
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - NARU
you can get a days insurance fully comp for £14 from
norwich union apply online, download your cover note.


Just checked this out - excellent scheme. My main car is a company one, and looking to buy a private one. .This will allow me to get instant cover to get my new purchase home. Just need to find a good one to buy now!
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - No FM2R
He wants a deposit before he'll let you test drive it ? Does he mean a refundable deposit subject only to any damage to the car ? In which case it seems safe enough but somewhat daft to me and certainly not ideal customer service. Its hardly your fault that he is unable to judge potential customers viability reliably enough.

If he means any level or type of non-refundable deposit then I would suggest he needs to go away. A long way away.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - Cliff Pope
I haven't bought many cars, but my experience has always been that one gets a better impression of the condition by being a passenger and letting the owner drive. If you hear or suspect anything, get him to hold it in gear, try the brakes again, or whatever. As the driver of a strange car you are in a state of confusion and excitement, so not best placed to judge. Unless it's a complete wreck, which you would probably notice anyway.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - L'escargot
I haven't bought many cars, but my experience has always been
that one gets a better impression of the condition by being
a passenger and letting the owner drive.


The only time I've done this was with my second car (1936 Citroen, bought in 1956) when I was young and foolish. By careful use of the clutch the owner cleverly concealed the fact that the car had got a badly worn driveshaft coupling. Never again.
--
L\'escargot.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - Cliff Pope
Good point. But you'd have spotted that when you crawled underneath looking for chassis rot?
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - yorkiebar
Private seller ? protecting his interest

Trader? Buy somewhere else ?
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - L'escargot
Private seller ? protecting his interest
Trader? Buy somewhere else ?


In 1956 secondhand cars for sale were few and far between, and in my price bracket they were very few and very far between.
--
L\'escargot.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - L'escargot
Good point. But you'd have spotted that when you crawled underneath
looking for chassis rot?


Like I said, I was young and foolish. And naive. And ...........

--
L\'escargot.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - Mike H
I haven't bought many cars, but my experience has always been
that one gets a better impression of the condition by being
a passenger and letting the owner drive.


Not sure about this one. Even my own car, which I and my wife have had for 5 years, feels different from the passenger seat. I notice everything when I'm driving (the odd hesitation, sticky gearchange, occasional suspension bonk, etc), yet from the passenger seat it feels smooth, responsive, quiet etc! This may cut both ways, as familiarity may just mean I'm sensitive to changes, but I really would not buy a car without driving it. For example, you can ask the driver to do what you like, but as a passenger you would never know about the spong brakes, the sticky gearchange, the clucth that bites right at the top etc.

I do agree you need to drive more than one in an ideal world, so that you have some basis for comparison.
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - madf
I haven't bought many cars, but my experience has always been
that one gets a better impression of the condition by being
a passenger and letting the owner drive.


Hmm. The ONLY time I did not drive a sh car I was looking to buy was when the owner of a tuned 1972 Lotus Elan Sprint refused to let me becuase of his insurance and drove me instead. He drove like a madman. I discovered the passenger seat was not propelry bolted down when it tipped back (with me in it) under fierce tyre burning acceleration from a start!


I decided not to buy it:-)



madf
Etiquette for test driving 2nd hand cars - MVP
If you allow someone to drive your car without insurance, you have committed, and can be convicted of an offence - it is up to you to ensure they actually have it.

One to think about.

Mark
 

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