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Test Drives

I'm curious about the Tesla test drive experience. Did y'all have to show any proof on income or employment before test driving a car like this? Do the salespeople allow you to test drive even if you have no intention of buying the car, and how do they determine this? Also, for those who have taken a test drive, did you get any kind of commemorative gift or thank you gift? Thanks everyone!

Chuck

A gift for test driving a car? LOL

Good questions, Chuck. My test drive of the roadster was to satisfy my questions about the electric car experiance, not spending that kind of money, but getting a Model S reservation later. Word of mouth advertising, and loyalty is going to get the Tesla product sold.

It would have been an inexpensive advertising gimmick to give us a lapel pin at the test drive, to get a network of free advertising by interested questions about it later, but the rep said that we had to order all products online. They missed a $5 chance to spread the word!

I went to the New York store when I was there on vacation. I got a ride without even asking for it!

I couldn't drive myself with my European drivers license (some insurance issue?), but it was a great experience!

A friend of mine who was there too and got his test drive is getting his Roadster in a few weeks, so it worked for Tesla by offering the test drive :)

If you have no intention of buying, Tesla reps do like to know that ahead of time. That way they don't waste your time, or theirs with sales pitches.

While I do agree a lapel pin or something would be a nice touch, I don't see it as being that big of a draw IMHO.

I was offered a test drive with ~10 minutes of entering the showroom (or what ever they call it). No effort was made to determine my financial ability or willingness to buy.

FWIIW - I passed on the test drive opportunity - I knew I wanted one!

The first time I saw a Tesla on TV I was interested. I live 150 miles from the dealership so I first contacted them via the web. After talking to a representative I felt that the car would not be practical in my area. That was the end of it; for a year.

The thought of owning a Tesla Roadster would not go away. In December I realized that the Roadster would actually be a good fit for my mountain driving and the range would be adequate so I arranged for a test drive. I knew I wanted to buy one but felt obligated to drive it before I committing myself. I do not recall them asking me anything about my ability to purchase. I placed an order a day or two after my test drive.

By happenstance I was back in Palo Alto last Monday. Since I knew I was going a few days ahead of time I called my sales advisor and asked if I could take a second test drive. When I arrived at the dealership, they had a lightning green Roadster (the color I ordered) waiting for me and let me drive it solo for a couple of hours. I really appreciated the accommodation.

They seem quite willing to let people drive the car. Anyone that drives it will be impressed and spread the word.

t1233;
was that really a "test" drive? Or just for fun!?

I test drove the car 3 times over 18 months before buying one. They never asked for proof of income or anything like that. Always very nice and a great sales experience.

If you have no intention of ever buying a Tesla, it would be nice to let them focus on people thinking about buying one but that doesn't mean they won't let you test drive the Roadster. The first 2 times I test drove the Roadster, I was just a Model S reservation holder and they still treated me well.

A little over a year ago, I had an afternoon to kill as my flight had arrived the day before a conference. I realized I was very near the Menlo Park store, and decided to drop in for a look.

The salesman I met spent a good deal of time showing me all around the car, and then asked if I wanted to schedule a test drive for the next day. Sure!

The next day I slipped out of the conference for a couple of hours, and had an absolute blast doing the test drive. It was at my request that the salesman accompanied me for the drive; I didn't know my way around the area. That was a good decision as he knew the best spots to, uh, have fun with the car.

*That* was when I seriously started thinking about getting one. And only after the test drive did the salesman casually ask a question that might have been interpreted as qualifying the sale.

I now have a Roadster in my garage.

Tesla knows that nothing sells the car like a test drive.

When I asked for a test drive over the Christmas break in 2009 the salesman in the Toronto store asked me a couple questions to ascertain how serious I was. He still emails me occasionally to see if I have changed my mind about borrowing the money I am short for the car, but I have so far refused to accept car payments again even though I love the car. When I can pay cash for the car I will get it. If that doesn't come to pass before the Model S ships I will simply get a Model S instead.

Tesla has a roadster in Portland, OR on January 15th, but when I asked for a test drive and mentioned I'd reserved a Model S, she said that the test drives were for folks serious about a Roadster. Which I understand, but it would have been fun to check it out.

The flexibility about getting to take a test driven when walking into a dealership may be a bit different since they're there all the time.

Yeah. When I test drove a Roadster in Vegas at the CES last year, they let me and my friend go out by ourselves and were told to come back in about half an hour in the loaded Roadster Sport.

They had a Roadster drive event around a track for 10 people but that was only considered for serious potential buyers. At the time, I wasn't planning on getting a Roadster so I didn't go but probably could have.

I was not asked for proof of income, nor was there any subtle vetting (i.e., 'what do you do?') before I took a Roadster out for a test drive in November.

(I bought one. It arrives in a few weeks. -smile- )

Brian H

The purpose of the second "test trive" was for me to get a better feel for range mode and some other details that I had overlooked the first time. I was already commited to my purchase so the only thing it was intended to do was satisfy my curiosity and, yes, have some fun.

However, it does illustrate how accomodating they are.

A word of caution to those that do not intend to buy a Roadster. If you drive it, you may end up buying one.


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