With over half of all new vehicles in 2018 being company registered¹, the chances are that those driving for work will at some point come in to contact with a brand-new car. Although “running in” a car is not as critical as it was in days gone by, there are still a few considerations to bear in mind when you first get the keys.
- Allow the brakes to bed in. Adopting a gentle driving style by avoiding heavy braking and harsh acceleration will mean less strain on fresh brakes.
- Tyres are more likely to last if treated gently for the first few hundred miles. Doublecheck your tyre pressures and again ensure a gentle driving style to reduce unnecessary wear.
- Check the coolant and oil levels frequently. The oil consumption may be relatively high for the first 5,000 miles as the engine parts gradually loosen up, but it should then settle down.
- If possible, avoid long runs at constant engine speed for the first 1,000 miles or so. Varying the engine speed helps the parts to start working together over the full speed range.
- Fuel consumption will also gradually improve as the moving parts wear in, so don’t be too disappointed if your first tankful doesn’t take you as far as you hoped. It is quite normal for mpg to increase gradually over several thousand miles.
As vehicle leasing becomes more common throughout the industry, company drivers may be less concerned with the long-term performance of their vehicles. Even if you or your drivers do not intend to keep it long-term, following the advice above may improve the vehicle’s performance and reduce the environmental impact over it’s lifetime.
IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards, Richard Gladman said: “Buying a new car is exciting, but it is also a substantial investment. Treating it with a little restraint to begin with will help all the parts to perform at their best for longer and more reliably. This will also help you get the feel of the car before you fully exploit the performance.”
If you have employees who are new to driving, our Vehicle Familiarisation course can give them the skills they need to keep themselves, and your vehicles safe on the roads.