When your teenager gets on the road for the first time, the one thing that always comes to mind is safety. While you can't be with them all of the time to make sure they aren't distracted, you can put them in a car loaded with safety features to help them make it home safely. This, along with a defensive driving course, is a recipe for success.
What Should I Look for in a First Car for My Teenager?
The number one thing you should be looking for when shopping for your teenager's first car is top-of-the-line safety features. Another thing you need to consider is your budget. You don't need to spend a ton on a car your teen will be learning to drive in and may damage. Looking cool can't hurt either, as your teen won't want to drive an old minivan. Check out a few of these models to get some ideas.
Three Best Cars for New Teen Drivers
The Subaru name is synonymous with safety and durability. This stylish small SUV has many advanced safety features to keep your teen safe. It has EyeSight Driver Assist Technology which warns you when you swerve out of your lane, helps steer you back in, and controls the cruise control. The Blind-Spot Detection system alerts you if there are any obstacles in your blindspots before you switch lanes.
The Crosstrek also comes with Automatic Pre-Collision Breaking, which can bring you to a complete stop in an emergency situation. It even has STARLINK Safety and Security, which will send out an alert if your teen is in an accident or if they need roadside assistance.
The Honda Civic has been redesigned over the years from a boxy sedan to a sleek, sporty car, which your teen will feel cool driving. The cool factor doesn't mean the car isn't safe. It is loaded with safety features like the Collision Mitigation Braking System, Road Departure Mitigation System, and the Sensing Suite, all of which will keep your teen safe. On top of these safety features, the Civic automatically locks its doors when you walk away with the keys in your pocket, in case your teen is forgetful.
The IIHS has rated the Civic with the Top Safety Pick+ rating which means it has superior performance at keeping its drivers safe in the event of a crash.
The Toyota Corolla is a great entry-level car for your teen that checks off both the stylish and safety boxes. This car comes with the total safety package in the Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 system. This system does everything to keep your teen safe including audio alerts and brake assist for potential collisions, lane departure assist to keep you centered in your lane, and dynamic cruise control, which keeps the car a safe distance away from other vehicles while using cruise control.
The Corolla even has a unique feature called Road Sign Assist, which detects and translates the meaning of any road signs you may come across, which is perfect for a new driver. The Corolla received both the NHTSA 5-Star Overall Safety Rating and is an IIHS Top Safety Pick, further making it a perfect pick for your teen's first car.
Drive Your First Car Safely
Once you decide what type of car you are getting for your teenager for their first vehicle, there are a few additional things you can do to ensure their safety. One of them is registering them for an I Drive Safely teen driver's course. This course will prepare your teen for anything they will encounter while driving and how to react to it. It may even help keep their first car out of accidents for years to come.