When kids pass their driving test and are legally able to take to the roads on their own, parents will want to make sure that they are safe. The cars that kids drive play a big role in their safety behind the wheel, and Vehix recently released its top eight choices for suitable cars for teenage drivers. The cars were chosen based on criteria that includes a price tag under $10,000, high crash-test scores, reliability and seating. Vehix suggests that less seating will discourage kids from piling too many friends into one car.
“Every parent wants a safe, reliable car for their teen driver,” said Michael Waterman, the executive editor at Vehix. “We identified eight vehicles from seven manufacturers that we would encourage our own children to drive due to their proven dependability, safety ratings and fuel efficiency.”
The 2005 Ford Escape got a five star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Edmunds reports that the car has an average resale price of $7,100, so it could be suitable for parents who are shipping on a budget with a used car loan. The crossover SUV also gets 27 miles per gallon in the city, so kids won’t bug their parents for gas money as often.
Parents who would prefer to see their kids in something smaller can consider the 2006 Hyundai Sonata, the 2004 Honda Accord and the 2003 through 2006 models of the Subaru Impreza. Hyundai’s sedan starts around $7,550, and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave it the highest safety rating it can assign. The Accord gets 31 mpg on the highway, got a five-star NHTSA rating and costs around $6,000.
Subaru’s Impreza is the more modest version of the sporty WR-X, so teens who have an affinity for tougher cars or just can’t get enough of racing video games might love to get behind the wheel of an Impreza. The prices range from $5,350 for a 2002 model to just under $10,000 for a 2006 version, according to Edmunds. The car gets an impressive 25 to 27 mpg on the highway and comes standard with all-wheel drive, which offers more safety on the road during inclement weather.
The other vehicles that made the grade were the 2003 Honda CR-V, 2008 Kia Optima, 2007 Mazda6 and the 2004 Toyota Highlander.