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Old 10-13-2009, 7:22 PM   #1
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Test Rides

Uh... how do you get a test ride in America? I'm 20 (live in PA), I've been riding 2.5 years (almost 3 complete summers). I have a clean car & bike driving record. I completed MSF Basic & probably will take MSF Experienced this summer. I started on a 250 ninja for like 2 months lol... And had an SV 650 ever since.

I've saved up enough cash to pretty much avoid financing. Looking to upgrade to a 1000cc. Either a cbr1000rr or the gsx-r 1000. Last summer, i tried to get a test ride at my local planet honda & they said we don't do that kind of thing (even on the 600cc's) because insurance costs would be ridiculous. They said they would let me ride a shadow 750 up and down the road off the dealership. But I'm not interested in cruisers at all.

Help? Thanks
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Old 10-13-2009, 8:03 PM   #2
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Re: Test Rides

Honestly, most dealers are gonna say no. The insurance thing is prolly a bluff since they'll let you take out a Shadow but not a 1k. You can try plunking down the full cash for the bike (not financed) and signing an agreement that you break it you buy it. And most would prolly be more willing to let you take out their daughter after force feeding her roofies. They might get more willing as the season winds down but then its a weather issue too.

If you're dead set on trying:
1) Bring the full asking price (no haggles)
2) Bring full gear (preferably not the helmet you slid down 95 with)
3) Bring (if possible) temporary coverage for the bike from your insurance carrier
4) Bring proof of medical, AD&D and life insurance (if possible)

All will show you're completely serious and understand the risks.
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Old 10-13-2009, 8:17 PM   #3
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Re: Test Rides

check honda's website, it shows which dealers actually offer test rides. if it says they do online, they do, even if a salesperson says they dont. i was told they dont after looking online so i asked another salesperson a few days later and he said they did.. wat a jerk. but not all of them up here do it so definitely check.
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Old 10-13-2009, 8:41 PM   #4
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Re: Test Rides

I had this issue when I got my first bike (new 2003 Yamaha R6) and understood that any person can get a learners/license without much if any riding experience. In North Carolina, you can ride by yourself (just not 2up or out of state) with just a 25 multiple choice test. Dealers are like any other person selling their own bike. you arent going to let others just ride it without payment up front. There are too many factors in riding an unfamilar bike. If I didnt buy the bike then, someone else would walk in a pick it up (well high demand back then).

Now when bought my 2004 Aprilia Factory, I was able to ride the demo bike to make sure I liked the V-twin, bike set up and feel. I also wasnt going to spend 18k on a bike if I didnt like it.

kuroshio had good advice...if they dont want to take you serious then find another dealer
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Old 10-13-2009, 10:01 PM   #5
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Re: Test Rides

In Okielahoma (at least it used to be) that if you had an "M" for motorcycle endorsement on your license, pretty much any dealer would let you test ride if they had a demo available. The endorsement meant you passed a written AND riding exam, but my personal experience was a few years ago so things may have changed since then, plus my local honda dealer was much more into personal service as opposed to just moving inventory. It was much the same as car dealerships where a copy of your license and a signed waiver would get you going...
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Old 10-13-2009, 10:58 PM   #6
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Re: Test Rides

Thanks for all the great advice!
I'll try it out at a much bigger dealer. I think this dealer actually doesn't usually let people do test drives. They are pretty small. But like you said, they aren't very personal either, so it's probably best not to buy from them. They just happen to be 2 miles from my house. I'll check the website to confirm.

I have full gear: pants, boots & all, license (obviously lol), insurance on bikes that aren't mine & medical...

But how do I bring money? I'd rather not withdrawal 10k+ in cash. Is there an easy way to prove I have the money? I don't have a full time job at the moment, because I'm still in college. I've heard people say "bank statements" but my bank is in Texas... lol... USAA.

& I was planning on trading in the SV650 at the same time... so I was hoping for 2k or so to help ease the price of the 1000cc's.
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Old 10-14-2009, 4:37 AM   #7
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Re: Test Rides

I'd say if you went in to a dealer with your bike, all your kit and insurance documents then they should allow you a test ride. Even if it means having a coffee with a sales guy to show you are the real deal. Would you buy a pair of shoes without trying them on? Then why expect someone to part with cash for something that they haven't tried.
I know where you are coming from and when I was younger (OMG I sound like an old git ) I found that it was easier getting a test ride from a dealer which I called in to on a regular basis and built up a bit of rapour, that way you don't have to do a "cold sell" of yourself they will be more than happy to help you out as you will seem to be less of a risk. Good luck
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Old 10-14-2009, 6:46 AM   #8
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Re: Test Rides

It could be that they dont have a demo on that model.
Any bike they let you test ride they cant sell as new.

Bigger places will allow for this and put aside 1 of each model for demo rides (and salesmen getting to take home one each night!)
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