Best First Car For Teenagers And Top Cars For Teens In 2023

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The moment your son or daughter gets their driver’s license for the first time, many questions start to turn into your head that often cause major headaches such as: What is the best starter car for a teenager, Who are good first cars for 17 year olds, ​Who are good first cars for a 16 year old, Who are good first cars under $5,000, Who are best cars for teens under 10k, best used car for teenager under $3,000 …


So if you are looking for the best first car for teenagers or the best cars for teens, with this article we can help you and give you useful tips to make the right choice for you.


The main and basic feature that guides us when it comes to the best cars for teen drivers ​is Safety. One very important fact that we want to share with you is that in the United States is that the rate of fatal accidents per mile driven by young drivers aged 16 to 19 is almost three times higher than the rate of driver.


We must mention once again that the main factor is security. Before we present our list, we have to give you some useful tips in order to make your choice even easier.



Is It Difficult To Choose The Best First Car For New Drivers?



The answer to the question is very simple that it is not at all difficult to choose the best and safest car for teenagers. Because we live in a time wherein just a few minutes searching on the internet we can get all the necessary information to make the right choice of car that will suit you the most.

If for some reason you don’t decide on one of our car lists then you have to do it all yourself, but keep in mind that it can take time, but as I said above it will not be difficult.










How Much More Will It Cost To Add A Teenager To Car Insurance?



The answer to this question is very short: a lot. So if you add a teenager to your car insurance, keep in mind that you will pay much more.

So if you want to know exactly how much you will pay and how much your costs will increase, you can find all this information in our article: The Average Price Of Car Insurance In The USA.




How To Reduce Costs For Car Insurance For A Teenager?



There are certain discounts that can be taken advantage of and thus reduce insurance costs. For example, Progressive offers up to a 10% discount for students with a Grade B average ​or much higher. Also, some insurance companies give discounts if your teenage driver attends a driving safety course. For all these questions, be sure to ask your insurance agent.


Whether your insurance company offers a discount for attending safe driving schools or not, we recommend that you enroll your new driver in such safe driving schools, because in these schools young drivers acquire a lot of driving skills and also develop their conscience for driving safety.




All Cars Aren’t Equal For Teen Drivers



In writing this article, we have taken into account the standards of the vehicles that we considered to be the best first car for teenagers while taking into account the cost of the vehicle with the safety features it includes.


We also had in mind the fact that the new models will have many more features for driver assists and safety features than older models, but we also had in mind that the price of new cars for many families is not realistic. So when making a home budget to buy a car you have to take into account the potential costs for the bodywork and repairs.


But if your family budget allows you to buy a new car then do it and keep in mind that they come with many safety features including stability control, anti-lock brakes, and traction control.




safest car for teenagers - honda



Cars That Should Be Avoided



Sports cars look very attractive at first glance, but in any case, they should be avoided as the first vehicles of teenage drivers because as inexperienced drivers they can be tempted and drive far below their skills.


When it comes large SUVs or pickups can also be a problem for your teenage driver as they will certainly have a problem with parking and there is also the issue of fuel economy in these vehicles.


Also, cars with high horsepower must be avoided as the first cars of teenage drivers because they are too fast and need much more experience when it comes to this type of driver.Keep in mind that increased horsepower means a much higher insurance premium, and thus the possibility of very big trouble.



Basic Safety Features For Teen Drivers



What is true today is that modern safety technology is becoming too expensive. It is one of the main factors that increase the price of today’s new cars. Completely new technology whose primary purpose is to assist the driver is incorporated into the standard or optional features of each new car.


So if you are able to buy a new car for your teenager our recommendation is to look for a car with all these safety features. If you are looking for a used car you will not have all these safety features but still, make sure that there is as much level of equipment as possible because safety and life are priceless.




Advanced Driver-Assist And Safety Features



In addition, we will introduce you to the advanced technologies for safety and assistance to the driver, which is the basis for choosing the best first car for teenagers.


If you don’t think of some of these features as safety features that help the driver, we must inform you that all of these safety features work in tandem with each other and allow safe driving by a teen driver.


1. Traction control – enables controlled acceleration through the anti-lock brakes slowing a spinning drive wheel.


2. Stability control – allows the anti-lock brakes to apply braking to the appropriate wheel or wheels to help correct a slide.


3. Anti-lock brakes – are the basis of the above two systems. They automatically modulate the brakes to maximize stopping power thus allowing the driver to have as few problems as possible while driving.


4. Blind-spot monitoring uses cameras and sensors, with a target to detect cars in adjacent lanes that may not appear in your side mirrors.


5. Forward-collision – warning with front automatic emergency braking is a very important security system that uses sensors for what is happening in front of the vehicle taking into account the speed of your car. If the system itself assesses that the accident is inevitable then it starts to give an audible signal, and if you do not respond to this warning the system itself starts to brakes automatically.



Other Important Features That You Should Also Consider



Also, other very important features that the vehicle should have are the following:


1. Tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel

2. Adaptive cruise control

3. Airbags, at least six

4. Outboard mirrors with turn-signal indicators

5. Auto on-off headlight

6. Automatic climate control

7. Power-adjustable driver’s seat

8. LED headlights and taillights

9. Infotainment system with voice recognition

10. Hill-start assist

11. Automatic high beams








It is also very useful information that some car manufacturers such as Ford, Chevrolet, Lexus, Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai, and Kia offer programmed driving monitors that allow you to track and set restrictions on your teenage driver.


For example, Chevy has General Motors’ Teen Driver Technology and Ford has MyKey to help parents monitor their teen’s driving habits.


The maximum speed limit in the system itself can also be set here and this is one of the most important functions when it comes to the safety of teenage drivers.



Are Crash Test Ratings Important?



These results are very important in choosing the best first car for teenagers. Our research is based on data obtained from independent crash-test testing organizations such as National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).



6 test areas for IIHS



Many car insurance companies support IIHS, which is basically a non-profit organization. In addition to publishing and evaluating crash tests, it also uses other data and qualifiers on the basis of which it awards its annual awards Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick+. At this point he has the grades Good, Acceptable, Marginal, or Poor and that in six testing areas.


1. Passenger-side small-overlap front

2. Roof strength

3. Driver’s-side small-overlap front

4. Head restraints and seats

5. Side

6. Moderate-overlap front



3 areas of testing for NHTSA



NHTSA performs only 3 tests and evaluates each test with stars. The worst result is with 1 star and while the best result is with 5 stars.


1. Rollover crash

2. Frontal crash

3. Side crash



The Best New And Used Cars For Teens



If your budget allows you to buy a new car then we recommend that you do so, but buying a used car is also a good option for most people.


In the case of used cars, we must mention that they all come with advanced driver assistance features as well as the most advanced safety features described above. The lowest rating for all used cars is a “Good” rating in at least five of the IIHS crash tests but almost all the vehicles here are a Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+. These vehicles also have a great economy when it comes to fuel consumption.



2022 GMC Terrain Amazing Styling And Appearance Value / Best First Car For Teenagers $29k to $37k


The GMC Terrain is an amazing SUV and comes with a large list of safety features. If you select the basic version SLE trim whose price is $ 29,095 and you pay only $ 695 to get the GMC Pro Safety Plus Package then you get this real beauty with forward collision warning, lane keep assist, automatic emergency braking, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, and blind-spot monitoring.


This GMC Terrain comes standard with GM’s Teen Driver technology, which can track the behavior of your young driver behind the wheel. With this advanced feature, parents can set speed limits and see reports on their teen’s speed, any activation of the forward collision warning system, and distance.


By IIHS and the NHTSA, this beautiful SUV receives excellent safety ratings. The IIHS gave the Terrain highest score of Good in all six of its crash tests and NHTSA rate it with a five-star rating for the overall crash test.


If you’re looking for a safe, intuitive compact, and dependable SUV for your teenage driver then this GMC Terrain should be on the top of your list.



2022 - gmc-terrain





2018 Toyota Corolla / Best Used Small Car for Teens



The 2018 Toyota Corolla is a very safe and secure car. This car has received a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS, and the NHTSA has given it an overall rating of 5 stars for collisions.


This Toyota Corolla also has great numbers when it comes to fuel consumption, and it is 32 mpg combined, making this car a real choice as the best first car for teenagers.


The Toyota Corolla standard comes with several advanced safety technologies such as adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and forward-collision warning.


The price of this car ranges between $ 16,000 and $ 22,000 which makes it affordable for many people.






 2022 Ford Focus Has Big Appearance Value And Warranty Safety/ Best First Car For Teenagers $31k to $45k



The Ford Focus is also a very cool and safe car. He gets an EPA combined estimated 46 MPG and earned the IIHS’s Top Safety Pick distinction. This Ford Focus received an overall rating of 5 stars when it comes to security from the NHTSA, including sedans and hatchbacks.


The new Focus has many advanced driver assistance features which include Rear Occupant Alert, Blindspot Assist, Intersection Assist, Active Park Assist 2, Speed Sign Recognition, Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Pre-Collision Assist with Active Braking and Lane Centring.


So if your family budget allows you to buy a new car then of course our recommendation is this new Ford Focus.








2018 Honda Accord / Best First Car For Teenagers




The Honda Accord was named the best car of 2018, and all this is thanks to the large number of safety features, which also makes it the best first car for teenagers.


This Honda model has several important driver assistance features: rear cross-traffic alert, automatic emergency braking, a rearview camera, and lane-keep assist blind-spot monitoring.


On the Touring trim, there are many important functions that parents can use to control teens through speed limits and geofence alerts.


Also, this car boasts very high safety ratings, so it has received 5 stars from the NHTSA and earned Good ratings in all six IIHS crash-test categories.


Honda Accord еarning up to 33 mpg in combined driving, which is a real choice when it comes to fuel efficiency. The price of this Honda ranges between $25,000 and $32,000, so you will not go wrong if you decide to buy this car for your teenager.







2022 Hyundai Elantra Hybrid / Best First Car For Teenagers $24k to $28k


The Hyundai Elantra Hybrid is also a great car choice for your new teen driver as it has many safety technologies as well as great fuel economy.

This vehicle offers many safety features such as rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, and has reverse automatic braking.


In addition to these safety features, this car also has green powertrain equipment that enables the Elantra Hybrid to get up to 56 mpg on the highway and 53 mpg in city driving.


Hyundai Elantra Hybrid has received high marks as a safe and secure car five-star rating in their side and rollover crash tests as well as a five-star overall rating from the NHTSA.


This Hyundai Elantra Hybrid is the right choice for the first car for your teenager, taking into account its price and all its safety features.








2022 Nissan Altima / Best First Car For Teenagers $25k to $35k



Nissan Altima has some of the most important safety features you can find in all new cars. If you decide to 2.5 Platinum trim with all-wheel-drive, you get the following functions: adaptive cruise control, forward and reverse automatic emergency braking, 360-degree camera, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, rear cross traffic alert, and a forward collision warning.


If you as a parent are concerned about how your teen is driving we can tell you that the car comes with NissanConnect, a tool that lets you set speed alerts, locate your teen, and curfew.


In addition to all these good features, it must be mentioned that this Nissan Altima has high mileage in terms of fuel consumption. It is estimated that in combined driving on the highway and in the city it reaches up to 32 mpg.


Nissan Altima has received the highest possible marks on all crash tests conducted by the IIHS, also NHTSA gave the Altima rating of five stars for overall crashworthiness.


If you decide to buy this car then you have made the right choice for your teenager.



2022 Nissan Altima





2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid / Best First Car For Teenagers $30k to $35k

Kia Sorento Hybrid is one of the best electric and hybrid SUVs, which comes fully equipped, with many security features, and gets good gas mileage as well.


If you decide to choose the base trim, keep in mind that you will get many standard security features such as lane departure warning, emergency automatic braking, blind spot monitoring with rear cross traffic alert, forward collision warning, and lane-keep assist. You will also receive standard technology such as reverse automatic braking and Kia’s UVO Link Remote Connectivity which is very important because it can send warnings to parents if their teenager has crossed any of the safety limits set.


2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid has received its highest rating of Good in all six crash tests by IIHS. In addition to all these safety features as well as fuel efficiency, the Kia Sorento Hybrid is the right choice for the first car for your teenage driver.



2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid peg




2017 Toyota Highlander / Best Used Midelsize SUV For Teens



When it comes to used mid-size SUVs Toyota Highlander is at the top as the best choice for your teenage driver. Its interior provides great comfort, and elegance, but what makes it special is that it offers great safety features.


This Toyota is coming with the Safety Sense suite of technologies, which includes equipment such as lane keep assist and automatic emergency braking. It is also equipped with a 360-degree parking camera, blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert. All this shows that this Toyota Highlander has good equipment in the midsize SUV category.


Toyota Highlander has received the highest recognition for collision endurance. Тhus received a total rating of 5 stars by the NHTSA as well as Top Safety Pick+ distinction by IIHS’.


This powerful beast has also received the award for the Best 3-Row SUV for 2017 and is the right choice of car for your teenager. The price you have to pay for this powerful SUV ranges from $29,000 to $38,000.









2022 Volkswagen Golf – Best Overall



For all new drivers looking for the best car, the Volkswagen Golf is it.

At first glance, the Golf may be a modest and simple car, but we must mention that it is one of the favorite cars for driving among teens, so owning this car is a real treasure.



The main specifications of the Volkswagen Golf are a front-wheel-drive compact hatchback, five-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic, and a 170-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine.



In the last few years, the Volkswagen company has invested a lot of money and effort to improve the appearance and make this golf functional and compact with an angled rear window and angular headlights. Its small appearance, large windows, and short hood allow you to simply live for this car every day.



The interior is very simple but very functional that perfectly showing the design perfection of this beautiful Volkswagen Golf.



The Golf received the highest marks from the two major safety rating agencies and a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), as well as Top Safety Pick+ distinction by IIHS



The basic price of the Golf starts at $ 29,545 with a basic package of equipment. If you opt for Golf Wolfsburg you have to pay an additional $ 15,095, but this model comes with more equipment such as Blind-spot Monitoring, Leatherette seating surfaces with heated front seats, and Rear cross-traffic alert, and Forward-collision warning with automated emergency braking. For this model, you have to pay a total of $ 44,640. The warranty that Volkswagen gives for the Golf is 72,000 miles or 6 years. But what is a big drawback and what many buyers don’t like is that no complimentary scheduled maintenance.



 Volkswagen Golf GTI





2022 Honda Fit – The Best Choice For Your Family Budget



The safety features that this car offers put it at the top as a real choice for the best first car for teenagers. The starting price of this car for the base model is $16,200, which offers many safety features that are standard, all of which allow this car to be a step ahead of its competition.


The NHTSA has given this Honda Fit a maximum 5-star safety rating, but it must be noted by the IIHS that this Fit was not subjected to its small-overlap crash testing, which must be considered for the Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+ rating.


This Honda Fit comes with a manual transmission (automatic transmission is optional) as well as adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and a sunroof making it a real choice as the first car for beginners drivers.


The standard warranty that Honda gives on its vehicles is 36,000 miles or 3 years, but for this model, the warranty is extended to 60,000 miles or 5 years.







2023 Hyundai Kona



For young drivers, the Hyundai Kona is a top-notch subcompact SUV that ticks all the right boxes. When it comes to safety and reliability, this ride is a champion, making it a perfect match for new drivers. Loaded with advanced driver assistance features, it steals the spotlight as the premier SUV in its affordable price range. The Kona scores big on safety with top marks in crash tests – a solid Good rating across six categories by IIHS and a full five-star overall rating from NHTSA.



Critics are singing its praises, applauding its responsive brakes and comfortable rides. And the good news doesn’t stop there – it boasts a high predicted reliability score of 83 out of 100 from J.D. Power, indicating it’s built to last.



Starting at just $23,950, the SEL trim pulls out all the stops. It introduces Bluelink, a special system that lets parents keep tabs on their young drivers remotely. Geofencing, curfew alerts, and speed notifications offer peace of mind. But that’s not all – the SEL trim is loaded with cutting-edge safety tech.



Expect forward automatic braking, driver-attention warnings, and lane-keep assist to ensure a secure journey. So, if you’re after the best SUV for teens, the Hyundai Kona SEL is the clear winner in the $20k to $25k range.







Discover The Ideal Car For Teenagers: 2023 Kia K5



When it comes to finding the perfect car that combines safety and comfort, look no further than the Kia K5. Packed with features and priced just right, it’s the ultimate choice for parents and new drivers alike. Safety is the name of the game here. The Kia K5 proudly wears the 2022 Top Safety Pick+ badge from the IIHS and boasts a stellar five-star rating from the NHTSA. And with a predicted reliability score of 84 out of 100 from J.D. Power, you know you’re getting a reliable ride.



Starting at $27,490 for the GT-Line FWD trim with the Premium package, the K5 is a powerhouse of features, making it a standout in its price range. It’s jam-packed with safety tech, including front and rear automatic braking, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert. Parents will love the Kia Connect infotainment suite’s “My Car Zone” feature, which lets them keep tabs on their teen’s driving habits using curfew, geofence, and speed alerts.



The Kia K5 is the ultimate choice for anyone seeking a safe, capable, and comfortable sedan for their young driver. No wonder it took home the title of our 2023 Best Midsize Car for Families. So, if you’re after a car that brings peace of mind and a host of features, the Kia K5 is the clear winner in the $25k to $30k range.









To Be Continued

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