If you're thinking about getting a new light commercial vehicle, the chances are you might have your eye on something that you like.

But have you actually been behind the wheel and had a chance to feel out how it handles? A good spec and attractive exterior is great, but if the vehicle is sluggish and difficult to manoeuvre you might change your mind about what you want to buy.

It can be difficult going for a test drive, especially as you might need to go from showroom to showroom, shrugging off advances from overly-enthusiastic salesmen in order to try out all of those that you like.

Unless you come to the DRIVEit event in July.

DRIVEit is the only UK exhibition which provides buyers with the chance to try out a wide range of different vehicles, all under one roof, allowing them to get behind the wheel and get a real feel for what's on offer.

 

The exhibition
A three day event DRIVEit brings together sellers and buyers with a range of vans, 4x4, chassis cabs, light vans and so on all on show. However, the real difference is that at DRIVEit, visitors will have the chance to get behind the wheel and properly test out the vehicle

All kinds of light commercial and light goods vehicles will be on display with plenty of room to try them out to see what you really think.

As well as vehicles, there's a whole host of accessory providers too. Shelving, racking, telematics, trailers, service, maintenance, fuel cards and livery can all be found at the exhibition too. Truly a one-stop shop for all your light commercial vehicle needs!

 

Driving licence requirements
Of course, you can't just roll up and jump behind the wheel of a vehicle; you have to be able to demonstrate that you are legally permitted to drive.
In order to take any of the vehicles for a test drive you will have to show a validated permit.

If you want a permit, upon arrival you will be directed to an area where the Driver Briefing takes place. Once you have completed your session you will need to show your driving licence. You will only receive a permit for the categories of vehicle that you are legally authorised to drive.

As a general guide, all full UK driving licences which were issued after 1997 will only provide an automatic entitlement to drive vehicles up to 3.5 tonne gross weight, and without any trailers.

You will also be asked to sign an indemnity form which provides confirmation that you agree to proceed at your own risk.

After this, you will be given a validated test permit which allows you to drive the vehicles on display. Simply go to the stands which catch your eye and book up a drive; you may need to come back later in the day for those that are the most popular.

Anyone who appears to be under the influence of alcohol will not be allowed to test drive any vehicles, regardless whether they are holding a validated driving permit.

 

The venue
The DRIVEit exhibition will take place between 10-12th July at Bruntingthorpe, opening at 8.30am every day.

The site was originally constructed in 1942 and was used as a WWII airfield, later acting as a base for testing and development on jet engines.

Since 1972 it has been used extensively for vehicle testing, with major names such as Peugeot and Chrysler making the most of the facilities.

Now owed by C. Walton Ltd, Bruntingthorpe is the largest privately owned vehicle testing facility in the UK. Offering one mile of motorway, five miles of test track, a 4x4 off road course, skid pan facilities, rough terrain and a handling bowl, it's a spectacular centre for putting any vehicle through its paces.