The Richmond Auto Mall Blog

Nov 1, 2018


Whether you’re a seasoned driver who has owned multiple vehicles or are a new driver and looking for your first ride, sometimes vehicle shopping can be a little intimidating. With so much choice, different features, and multiple styles to decide between, how do you know where to start?

The key to remember is that there really is something for every kind of somebody, it’s just about figuring out which car suits you best. What’s your driving style? Will you be doing a lot of city driving or more highway cruising? Are you looking for a solo ride or a family adventure? Is trunk space, safety, or the look and feel a priority for you? It’s important to find your kind of something, and we’re here to help! Here is our checklist for finding a vehicle that suits you best.


This is one of the first things to consider when choosing a vehicle. What will you be using this vehicle for? Is it just to get to and from work? Do you have a large family? Do you plan on hauling lots of camping gear? The number of seats, trunk space, and storage all matter. If you’re looking for a smaller vehicle just for you, something like the Mazda 3 is a great choice. But if you’ve got a bunch of children, dogs, or like to take road trips, you may want to opt for an SUV like the Toyota RAV4 or even a pick up with a truck bed with tons of storage like the Toyota Tacoma.

Fuel Economy

Fuel economy is the next thing that should be on your checklist. What kind of mileage do you expect to accumulate? If you’re someone who has to travel far for work every day, it may be worth considering an electric vehicle like the Nissan Leaf. Or maybe a vehicle with a green mode, like the ECON button in a Honda Civic, will do just the trick. Either way, considering fuel economy will help out your wallet, and the planet, in the long run.


For those looking to take on the great outdoors and push their vehicles to their limits, capability is vital. If you’re someone who stays on paved roads and are mostly using your car to get to work and run the groceries, move on to the next category. But if you’re someone looking for a truck or a rugged ride, considering the towing capacity, off-roading capabilities, and whether or not it has 4WD are all important boxes to check. Curious which vehicles do all this and more? The Land Rover Discovery, the Jeep Wrangler, and the RAM 1500.


Most of us have been riding in or driving cars for such a long time, that it becomes second nature and we tend to forget about the dangers on the road. But preparing yourself, and your family, for safe driving is very important. You want the vehicle you’re taking your kids to daycare, school, and extracurriculars in to be safe and dependable, just like the 7-airbag Hyundai Sonata. So keep an eye out for best-in-class safety features like back-up cameras, lane departure warnings, car proximity sensors, and more.


Now for the fun stuff. While you should love the way your vehicle looks on the outside, the true beauty is what’s on the inside. Besides, that’s where you’ll spending most of your time! Nowadays, there are so many features and add-ons to choose between. Some vehicles prioritize luxury, like the Mercedes Benz S-Class, while others focus on functionality, like the Ford Focus. You must decide on what matters most to you. From dashboard touch screens and Wi-Fi, to heated seats and panoramic sunroofs, these are all fun additions to look for and consider when choosing a vehicle and creating the perfect personalized cabin experience.


Last, but definitely not least, is handling. This may be one of the most important categories because, while you may find the ideal vehicle while browsing online, you won’t know how it feels until you get behind the wheel. Taking any car you’re thinking about purchasing for a test drive is crucial. Discovering how the car takes to the road, handles turns, changes gears, and simply just feels to drive will be essential for choosing a vehicle you love.

We believe there is something for every kind of somebody, and hope that this checklist helps you narrow down the right vehicle. And remember, we have tons of experts at Richmond Auto Mall who can help you, too. So come visit us for a test drive and find the perfect car that suits you best.