Decline in Test Drives Amongst UK Drivers Uncovered in Recent Study

An independent study has unveiled that one in three British drivers (29%) did not arrange a test drive for their latest new car lease or purchase, shedding light on a diminishing trend.

Mobility provider SOGO conducted research to gauge attitudes towards the traditional test drive’s popularity. Surprisingly, although 88% of motorists acknowledged the benefits of test drives when acquiring a new vehicle, only a third of them actually went ahead to schedule and experience a test drive.

The findings from the research* shed light on various reasons why individuals opted out of test drives before finalising their vehicle selection. For one in four respondents (25.2%), the presence of a salesperson during the test drive was off-putting. One in ten believed that most vehicles drive similarly, thereby deeming test drives unnecessary.

While 7% expressed full confidence in their vehicle choice and saw no need for a test drive, 5% considered test drives inconvenient and time-consuming, and 1% simply did not prioritise the driving experience. Notably, 40% of 18-24-year-olds found test drives enjoyable.

Interestingly, the attitudes towards test drives were remarkably similar among male and female drivers, with 29% of men and 27% of women foregoing the experience. However, younger drivers were more inclined to skip test drives, as 34% of 18-24-year-olds opted out, compared to 21% of drivers aged over 65.

SOGO, as a mobility provider, has adapted to significant changes in vehicle use and ownership by offering leases as short as four weeks. This flexibility allows drivers to change their vehicles regularly, even monthly, if desired.

The company believes that short-term leasing will play a crucial role in promoting the mass adoption of electric vehicles, particularly with the approaching 2030 ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars. Electric car sales are predicted to soar in response to the government’s ban.

Karl Howkins, the managing director of SOGO, commented on the research findings, stating, “While the majority of drivers see the value in test drives, our research shows that a significant portion chooses their cars without going through the trial process. This aligns with what we observe at SOGO, where short-term leasing allows dissatisfied customers to switch to a completely different vehicle with a new, flexible lease.”

He further emphasised, “Considering a short-term flexible lease provides an excellent alternative to longer commitments. With the 2030 ban on petrol and diesel cars on the horizon, a shorter lease on a new, environmentally friendly, and cost-effective vehicle holds immense appeal.”

SOGO leverages cutting-edge technology to offer a digital-led service that allows customers to order a vehicle within minutes. Additionally, the company has established a customer service centre in Milton Keynes to ensure that all customers receive prompt assistance, with the option to speak to a team member over the phone.

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