Universal Electric Vehicle Checklist


Need a printable EV buyer guide and checklist? — CLICK HERE


(A) Pre-pickup Items

  1. Check all paperwork for the correct name and address for all buyers.
  2. Confirm the actual vehicle’s VIN matches all of your paperwork.
  3. Verify that the vehicle’s body color, interior, options, and wheels match what you configured.
  4. Bring proof of down payment having been made if sent before, and the final payment, if required.
  5. Bring a printed insurance card if possible, if not, bring a digital copy.
  6. Call the pickup location to confirm the vehicle is on-site (no delay in shipping).
  7. Download the manufacturer’s associated vehicle App.
  8. Check for any outstanding recalls.

(B) Exterior Inspection

  1. Inspect body exterior paint for defects.
  2. Inspect under the car for signs of damage or scratches from test drives or transport.
  3. Check along all body panels for gaps or misalignment, especially the hatch gap, front trunk alignment, and general fender gaps.
  4. Inspect wheels for damage or paint defects, and confirm aerocovers (hubcaps) are in the vehicle if equipped.
  5. Inspect all glass. It should look clear with no damage. If the vehicle is equipped with double-pane glass, check for distortion at different levels.
  6. Check for proper windshield trim installation.
  7. Check the black triangle applique at side mirrors for proper fitment.
  8. Check for discoloration/rainbow hue of surrounding trim.
  9. Test all doors to ensure they open and close easily.
  10. Test opening and closing of the hatch with auto-close button, if applicable.
  11. Confirm the charge port can be opened from the outside with the vehicle unlocked.
  12. If available and purchased, confirm the tow package is installed.
  13. Check all exterior lights and cameras for condensation.
  14. Inspect all-weather seals around door gaps and windows for damage and fitment.
  15. Confirm the correct number of key cards/keys come with the vehicle.
  16. Test unlocking and locking of the vehicle using the key cards/keys.

(C) In the Driver’s Seat

  1. Verify the vehicle is charged at 80%+ (if required for travel to home destination).
  2. Set driver profile and seat memory system.
  3. Check for any error messages on the display screen.
  4. Bring up the menu from the main screen. Confirm proper VIN and Spec.
  5. Confirm any pending software updates are downloaded.
  6. Try navigating to a set location to confirm navigation is completely loaded.
  7. Test the wireless phone charger (you may need to remove your phone case).
  8. Check each window operation for speed and any noises.
  9. Make sure heat and air conditioning work at full power. Be sure to move air vents all around and follow the airflow to confirm proper function.
  10. Make sure heated seats/steering wheels are working.
  11. Test the sound system to ensure all speakers are working, including the amplifier if equipped.
  12. Adjust the vehicle’s steering wheel and mirror adjustments. Confirm that both are working and have full movement.
  13. Test the vehicle’s horn.
  14. Test the vehicle’s exterior pedestrian speaker (if equipped).
  15. Check the windshield for a distorted view from both the driver’s and passenger’s seat.
  16. Test the windshield wipers.
  17. Test the rearview camera and blind-spot cameras.
  18. Test the turn signals.
  19. Check side mirrors folding and positioning operation.
  20. Check sun-visor operation and mirror condition.
  21. Check the rearview mirror for clarity.
  22. Confirm the key cards/keys start the vehicle.
  23. Check the glovebox for fitment and opening/closing.
  24. Confirm that you can open and close the front trunk and hatch.
  25. Test voice command, if equipped.
  26. Make sure the software and maps are up-to-date.
  27. Test regenerative braking for possible issues.
  28. If equipped, confirm the functionality of the vehicle’s Adaptive Cruise Control and other Driving Assistance Systems.
  29. Test the touch screen for responsiveness and functionality, including menus and sub-menus.
  30. Check if the home-link for the garage door opener has been set up correctly.

(D) Interior Inspection

  1. Inspect the quality of carpets and floor mats.
  2. Confirm that all cup holders and storage compartments are in good condition and functioning correctly.
  3. Inspect interior upholstery and all surfaces for damage or issues with build.
  4. Check the windshield and windows for cracks, chips, or distortion.
  5. Check all seat belts for proper operation and condition.
  6. Check seats for noises and all directions of adjustment.
  7. Check that the rear seats fold-down properly and pull up normally.

(E) Connectivity Inspection

  1. Test power in USB ports.
  2. Check DC receptacle(s) for power if equipped.
  3. Pair your smartphone to your vehicle via Bluetooth.
  4. Confirm that you can connect to the manufacturer’s center’s WiFi.

(F) Lighting Inspection

  1. Check vanity mirror lights and front lights.
  2. Check dome light.
  3. Check driver & passenger door puddle lights.
  4. Check all door lights.
  5. Check glovebox operation, including light.
  6. Check trunk lights.
  7. Check headlights (low & high beam).
  8. Check front and rear turn signal lights.
  9. Check brake lights.
  10. Check the function of the ambient interior lighting.
  11. Check the lighted door handles for proper operation.

(G) Inspect Charging Ability

  1. If provided, check the charging cable and adapter(s) for any signs of damage.
  2. Check that the charge port door opens and latches correctly.
  3. Check charge port indicator light.
  4. Test the charger on-site.
  5. Test at level 2 and level 3 chargers, if available.

(H) App Setup And Final Items

  1. Sync the manufacturer’s App to the vehicle.
  2. If more than one driver, add them to the driver profile on the app and on the vehicle.
  3. Set the App as the vehicle’s key and confirm all actions work accordingly.
  4. Verify any additional items that were specified as being included with purchase:
      • Mobile charger
      • Floor mats

Disclaimer: Electric Vehicle Buyer Guides provided by EV Universe are for educational purposes only and do not constitute advice on the acceptability, performance, pricing or any other factor of the purchasing experience of a vehicle.


More on EV Universe:

  • Explore More EVs: Check out our comprehensive listings page for detailed information on top electric vehicles.
  • Shop EV Parts: We’re more than just a source of information. Browse our extensive marketplace for a variety of EV parts and products.
  • Insights & Updates: Stay updated in the world of electric vehicles with our insights section. Dive into our in-depth reviews, educational pieces, and the latest news.
  • Find Your Perfect EV: Harness our EV Matchmaker tool to explore a diverse range of electric vehicles, filter by your preferences, and discover hidden gems that perfectly match your driving style and budget.