Buying a new car can be a difficult and worrisome event. Trying to decide what model and style car you want, what options you need, and how much you want to spend can take a significant amount of time and effort. Then once you decide on all those factors, now it's time to go to the car dealership lots and talk to the salesperson and take a test drive. Once around the block and you have to try and make up your mind if this is the car for you. Why not try renting a few models first and give them a more complete test drive? A car is something you are going to have to drive for a few years, so it should be the one that fits you best, not necessarily the one the salesman is trying to sell you.
Wouldn't it be nice to try out your normal commute to work as a test drive? If you rent the car for a few days, you can certainly do this. It's a good way to get a feel as to the gas mileage associated with your new car and commute. Since most people spend a significant amount of time in their car commuting to work, now is also a good time to determine if you can be comfortable in the car. Is the road noise too much while on the highway? Is the ride too rough or stiff for you to be comfortable? Does the seat and steering wheel adjust properly to your height and weight? These are all factors that should be considered when test driving your potential new car. This is the advantage of renting for a few days first.
In the past, most US based car rental companies would only have US model cars. So, if you were looking to rent a foreign model, you wouldn't be able to. More recently, the US car manufacturers have reduced the number of cars they sell to fleets. This means that the rental agencies have to supplement their fleet vehicles with foreign models. So you are more likely to find Toyotas, Nissans and Hondas on the rental lot than ever before. Most rental agencies also try to keep their fleet up to date, so your chance of finding the car you are looking to buy available for rent is very high.
The easiest way to find the model you are looking for is to call your local agent. Ask if they have the year model you are looking for on the lot today. If they do, be prepared to make a trip to the rental lot. Once you are in the car, you can compare the features of the car you are driving versus the car that you are looking to buy. There may be some minor cosmetic differences between the two models. Minor differences such as cloth versus leather seating can be a factor you can overlook in the rental. However, there is a significant difference between a 4 cylinder and a 6 cylinder and it should be a deciding factor that you can experience firsthand while renting.
If you can, you should definitely rent a variety of vehicles before purchasing anything. You may determine that a particular style of vehicle, while it may look good on paper and have all the features you want, might not fit into your daily driving needs.
Ashley Lena is a Business Consultant, Philanthropist and she runs a Think Tank, as well as do a lot of Traveling, Writing, Cycling, Flying, Volunteering & enjoy life to the fullest. Have dabbled in local and regional politics.
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