Perhaps because real customers don't enjoy beating on brand new cars they have no intention of buying.
Also the "award winning salesman" allowed test drives, he didn't allow self professed "stunt drivers" to break the law and beat on new vehicles. Dealership's insurance companies frown on that nonsense.
What if you were a salesman at a Jeep dealership, and somebody wanted to test drive a bad ass rugged new Wrangler 4x4, and during that test drive they wanted to take it off roading? I mean after all, it is a 4x4 and they are built for off road use.
I have no idea where many of the commenters live, but in my area any dealership that refused customers a test drive would be out of business in a week. How can anyone be expected to buy a car without having a clue as to how it performs?
There is a huge difference between a test drive (driving within the legal limits) - NOT driving to endanger & beating on a vehicle that you do not own.
Folks who really think that way should just spend the money and go to a movie, because contrary to that belief, nobody has the right to beat on a dealership's vehicle.
If you want to beat on it after you own it, go right ahead, but prepare to have your warranty voided. That's what is called "Poetic Justice" for all you "stunt drivers" out there.
In answer to comment 16:18, I once worked for a dealership that sold rugged 4X4 vehicles. The customers were not only allowed but were actually encouraged to try out the off-road capabilities of these vehicles. Other area dealerships had a similar policy, and if we expected to sell vehicles, we had to allow customers to determine how suitable the vehicle was to their needs. I just wonder where all these people live that test drives are not allowed.
Funny how the reactionaries twist and distort - I have not read anywhere but from the reactionaries that "test drives" were not allowed - as has been pointed out in other posts that those seem not to choose to read, it is the beating on or the abuse of a vehicle that is not allowed.
Just shows how society now refuses to take responsibility for their actions, and how so many have grown up to feel entitled to do whatever they want. Guess what - you're not.
My uncle bought new Mopars every year in my small town. That's right, every year and no leases He was allowed to bring them home solo for the day from the same dealership. The dealer never batted an eye. But today I am certain insurance companies will not allow that anymore.
How about a blue Superbird; sticker was 5k, and is now well in the 6 figures today. He traded some to die for. There are auto brokers that will ship a car and you have a short period to return. But you still pay the shipping, which can be sizable. I was allowed to bring a motorcycle home though.
So trying out the performance capabilities of a vehicle is "abuse"? Sorry, but I'd never shell out 30 grand or more for any vehicle without knowing how it stood up to the competition. Without a test drive, how can you compare vehicles?
It appears that various localities apparently have different standards for test driving cars. In our area sales personnel seldom even accompany mature adult customers during test drives. On three occasions, my wife and I have been invited to take new cars home for an entire weekend to check them out. I can't fathom being limited to a few minutes at under 40 mph. I'd never buy a car under such ridiculous conditions.
As for the warranty being voided, no car maker on Earth voids the warranty for accelerating, cornering or braking!! I once mentioned to a service manager that my new truck was cutting out at 110 mph. I was simply told that the manufacturer had installed rev limiters to limit speed. I was told that the dealer could not disable it, but that I was free to do it myself or have a speed shop do it for me. There was not a word about voiding the warranty. Both of my new Fords are rev limited to 120 mph, but there are devices readily available from speed shops to disable the limiters. It is certainly not illegal to do so.
Abuse is abuse - and it seems there are plenty of people who just love to abuse cars they don't own. Hopefully the ones they end up buying were subject to the same kind of abuse from other people. :)
I find it odd that so many commenters regard testing a vehicle's acceleration, cornering, braking or ride as abusing or bashing. Various car magazines routinely perform these exact same types of tests in order to inform their readers of a car's performance capabilities. After the tests, the cars are returned to the dealerships and sold as new cars. They are in no way damaged, nor is their warranty voided. Since automotive magazines test only the most expensive, high-performance models, a consumer desiring a less expensive or powerful model can only evaluate their chosen vehicle with a hands-on test drive.
No one can be a truly competent driver without a knowledge of how their vehicle will handle emergencies such as sudden braking, swerving to avoid a car or obstacle, or rapidly accelerating to avoid being hit by a rapidly approaching vehicle on a freeway entry ramp. Our biggest highway hazards are drivers who are clueless about how to avoid accidents, because they haven't a clue about basic physics or how their car will perform in emergency accident avoidance maneuvers.
I was quite fortunate to have grown up in a family of automobile enthusiasts. I have had a defective tire blow out at over 100mph and kept the car straight and under full control to a safe stop. I have been forced onto a grass median at 110mph by another vehicle, and safely maintained control until I was around the other vehicle and could steer safely back onto the pavement. One of my cars suffered total steering failure at over 70mph, and again was brought to a safe stop without mishap. I have safely driven one older vehicle of mine on a 100 mile trip with absolutely no brakes due to a failed master brake cylinder with not a single close call. On snow or ice my front-drive car is impossible to steer in the normal way, so I corner by skillfully applying the emergency brake to swing the rear end around.
Our greatest danger is not drivers who speed or accelerate rapidly, but those who haven't the slightest idea of how to actually drive a vehicle. The average American driver is far more dangerous at 45mph than a well-trained driving enthusiast is at 150mph. I have now been driving for over five decades. In that time I have never been responsible for a single accident, and I have gotten only two speeding tickets in those 50-plus years. I seriously doubt that a single one of those arguing against allowing test drives can boast of such a record.