Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
August 14, 2012
A new study conducted by Maritz Research finds that 11.4% of new car buyers are skipping the test drive. The implication for skipping the test drive are due to more consumers doing their research on the internet (8 out of 10 consumers the study found) and the universal dislike of the car sales practice.
"I just find it quite fascinating and a little baffling. As cliché as perhaps it sounds, there's that new-car smell that needs to be experienced firsthand and cannot be experienced over the Internet," said Chris Travell, vice president of strategic consulting for Maritz Research.
Dealers aren't happy with this news. The test drive is one tactic used to get people excited enough to part with their hard earned cash.
"My manager said, 'The feel of the wheel will seal the deal,' " said Philip Reed, a former dealership representative who now serves as senior consumer advice editor for Edmunds.com.
The test drive can also tell a potential buyer whether they're making the right decision or not.
"Everything that you read isn't necessarily true. There's nothing online that tells you how that car feels. I enforce it with the salespeople that they have to at least offer a test-drive with every customer," said Ken Thomas, general manager of Telegraph Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Taylor, MI.
Source: Detroit Free Press
William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.