Finding the right car for your teen driver can be an overwhelming task. The most important thing to consider is that the car should be five years old or newer, so you know it has the latest safety features. Here are ten cars for teens that have good IIHS safety ratings. The good news is that most of these cars won’t cost you an arm and a leg because they can be purchased for under $20,000.
1. Subaru Outback
This affordable wagon may deter your teen from trying to call attention to themselves by showing off because of its “mom car” look. It also takes 9.2 seconds to go from zero to sixty so racing is unlikely.
2. Honda Accord
This Sedan is family friendly with a roomy interior and superior ride quality and handling. The standard features that can help your teen be safe include a backup camera, Bluetooth phone, streaming audio, and touch screen control of Pandora radio. Your teen will like that it has two 12-volt power outlets and you’ll appreciate that it was a top safety pick for the insurance institute.
3. Honda CRV
With a roomy and comfortable interior, it’s a car the whole family will enjoy. When it’s time for your teenager to take the wheel, automatic emergency braking and blind spot warning put you at ease.
4. Ford Explorer
A midsize SUV that has safety features like a backup camera, touch screen controls for entertainment and navigation, and blind spot alerts on the side mirrors. It’s sleek, classy, and roomy.
5. Toyota Highlander
It’s spacious enough for a family but safe enough for that new driver. It handles turns nicely, has precise steering, and the Entune infotainment system means fewer distractions for a teenager.
6. Nissan Maxima
This larger model is economical and reliable. The Maxima usually has lower insurance rates which are helpful for your pocket book and makes it easier for teens to pay for their own insurance.
7. Volkswagen Passat
This midsize sedan has lots of passenger space and solid performance. Packed with features like dual-zone climate control, three 12-volt power outlets and automatic headlights, the Passat will please even the most discerning teen.
8. Toyota Avalon
It’s larger size, and heavier weight makes it an automatic safer pick for teens. Research shows they’re less likely to crash larger cars. It also has electronic stability control which helps drivers maintain control around curves and on slippery roads.
9. Mazda CX-5
A small, well-made SUV that doesn’t break the bank. If your teen doesn’t want to drive a dull sedan, this may be an excellent compromise. It’s weight, size, and height reduce rollover risk, plus it has sharp steering and brilliant cornering capabilities.
10. Subaru Impreza
If your teen will be driving on slippery or snowy roads, choose this car with a standard all-wheel drive system that helps inexperienced drivers learn car control. There’s plenty of power to enable the driver to get out of trouble, but not enough to abuse it.