How to Find the Best Cars for Teenage Drivers

Passing the license test is only the beginning. The next step is to get an all around loveable car and find cheap car insurance for young drivers. It is understandable that parents’ and teenagers’ choices may clash here. Most moms and dads would want to look at safety, reliability and costs while youngsters may want a hot ride. Both parties can get something as close to what they want as possible with a little research. So, there is a little bit of work to do in order to find the best automobiles for teenagers that will satisfy both parties.

A recent survey carried out by USAA Insurance Company confirms that the majority of parents (80%) puts reliability first in the checklist followed by safety ratings and affordability. Those automobiles generally increase the chance of getting cheap auto insurance as well. You still have to make sure not to get an auto that will embarrass a teen in front of friends. The good news is that most parents do the research as well. Therefore, you would be surprised how many of the teen’s friends actually have highly recommended vehicles.

Here are some tips as to how to pick an automobile that will fit in budget, offer peace of mind and still be loveable.

Question of New or Used Auto

You can pick up a used automobile at a very reasonable price these days. However, you may find that they lack the technological safeguards you want to see. New cars come with Electronic Stability Control (ESC), side airbags as well as front, collision intervention solutions and many more protections that are highly desirable. Also, you can probably get additional savings on automobile insurance because underwriters like those and additional security features against theft.

The problem with older vehicles is that you cannot fix those extras on them. You cannot add airbags or ESC on an older vehicle and some of the security features you can add may not qualify you for premium discounts. Perhaps, a happy middle ground may be to go for nearly new second hand cars depending on the budget. Generally, you want to look for the ones that are not more than two years old.

What to Look for when Buying Cars for Teen Drivers

Safe Cars for TeenagersIt may take some time to research all the options but getting it right is important for the well-being of young drivers and parents’ peace of mind. Furthermore, The choices will affect the auto maintenance, fuel and insurance costs as long as you keep the vehicle. Here are a few points to watch out for and how to deal with them.

  • Price is always an important factor regardless of buying a new or old car. There are a few online car shopping websites that can help you find what you are looking for. You need to first find out how much the market price of the auto you are considering is. Then, you can start negotiating for a lower price and free extras. For example, this car buying research tool offered by USAA can help you find the right price and connect you with the dealers.
  • Reliability is one of the most important factors considered by parents. You need to look at the warranties offered to decide about reliability. Generally, manufacturers that are confident offer longer warranties and it is cheaper to extend the warranty of such models. Warranty offers peace of mind due to the fact that any technical issues will be sorted out by the company. Also, some models are known to last a lot longer and keep their value better. You may want to find out about them too.
  • Safety is extra important when you are buying the vehicle for a high risk driver. Generally, safer cars have lower insurance ratings and are cheaper to insure. Checking crash-test results and ratings is a good way of judging it. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety publishes their findings under Top Safety Picks each year.
  • Practicality is something you should consider especially if you are living in city centers. Small cars are great for the city residence as they are easier to park. Some countries, states or cities charge lower tax for smaller and low emission autos that there may be tax benefits as well.
  • Style is always the key attraction and this is truer when you want to be a fashionable teenager. Recent surveys suggest that most of them like small cars anyway. For example, the Fiat 500 is very popular with girls thanks to its cute look and style. Parents would need to discuss what type of cars children think is cool.
  • Running costs should not be ignored too. Sometimes it may make sense to spend a little bit more to get a more economical one. Usually popular models are cheaper to get serviced and repaired because most garages deal with them and the parts are widely available. Cars with lower engine sizes are normally going to burn less petrol. And cars with good ratings will be cheaper to insure.
  • Used Cars require a little bit more checking before purchasing. You should check their history by getting a report from companies like CarFax. These auto history reports are generally cheap to order and can prevent many issues in the future. Another problem is cars with flood damage and you should take extra care when they are coming from recently flooded areas. Also, it is highly advisable to ask a mechanic to have a good look at the engine and for any signs of crash repairs before you pay the seller.

Top 10 Cars for Teenagers

There are several websites that publish research or opinions as to which cars are the best for various categories and groups of people. Here are our top 10; Hyundai i10, Seat Mii, Nissan Micra, Fiat 500, Volkswagen Polo, Renault Kadjar, KIA Stonic, Mazda CX-5, Škoda Citigo and Volkswagen T-Cross, based on insurance costs, price and reliability. Obviously you will have an opinion on the matter as well but it is helpful to look at those lists. You can find a few of these lists on the Internet. Just make sure that they take all three points of reliability, safety and affordability into account when they come up with their picks.

Other Resources

There are plenty of other resources for teenage drivers to check. They can carry on driving education, learn how to look after automobiles or become a good defensive driver. You can even find a contract to sign with them outlining his/her responsibilities and the terms you agreed. They should know that they are responsible and there will be consequences if they fail. They should also know the laws and regulations and what would happen if they break them.