Get the most from a test-drive

Practice stopping

Try out the brakes at a variety of speeds and circumstances. Go somewhere quiet and away from traffic. Pick a stop sign or a tree, and use that as a measurement point. Get the car up to 25 mph, and when you cross your measuring point, hit the brakes. You can try it again at 45 mph or even 60 mph, if it’s safe to do so. You can do a full panic stop (where you slam the brakes as hard as you can), but also try braking like you would while driving normally. Notice how much distance it takes to stop at various speeds. Also try a deceleration test, like 50-30 mph, to see how the car slows down. Do the brakes feel comfortable and confident? Some vehicles have a very firm pedal feel, while others are more soft and mushy. Brake pedals on hybrids and electric cars tend to feel much grabbier than those on their non-electrified counterparts because of their regenerative braking systems.