4 Best Cars for the New Teen Driver

Let’s face it-new teen drivers’ need cars with excellent safety features and crash-test results, but teens aren’t looking for the safest car like their parents. They want something cool and sporty that they can personalize and show off to their friends. Car safety technology has improved drastically over the past few years, so it’s now an ideal time to trust teens on the road. Luckily, there are cars that fulfill both requirements for teens themselves and their parents. Check out these great options for your teen driver.

Hyundai Elantra

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The Hyundai Elantra stands out as one of the best cars for new drivers. The Elantra received a five-star rating in government crash-tests for overall safety and side impact protection. It also earned for stars for frontal impact protection as well as earned the title of top small sedan by Consumer Reports.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gives the Elantra its highest score of side-impact and frontal-offset crashes. The car also receive a top rating for roof-strength test.

Those tests show you that the Elantra will protect your kid during an accident. You also need to know what features will help them avoid accidents.

The Elantra comes packed with standard safety features, including:
• anti-lock disc brakes
• traction control
• stability control
• active from head restraints

In addition to the Elantra’s ratings, teens love the sporty look of this car from the curved shaped headlights, aerodynamic roof line, and standard rims. The body style reminds me of the Pontiac Grand Prix I owned as a teen. As for the interior, consumers loves the gauge appearance with blue lighting and the steering wheel controls. Overall, this cars boasts style and safety, which makes it perfect for teen drivers.

Ford Focus

2012 Ford Focus Hatchback SEL

The Ford Focus comes in as a close second as it’s been one of the top selling compact sedans for years. It also receives excellent safety and crash-test ratings and comes with the safety features that can help parents relax when their kids are out and about.

Government crash-tests give the Focus four out of five stars in overall safety. That’s good score worth noting. The IIHS gives the car its highest rating in side and frontal-offset crashes. It also gets the top score for roof strength.

To make the Focus even safer, add the Ford Sync System. This system can notify 911 when a crash occurs.

Also consider setting the MyKey System, a standard feature, so you can control your teen’s driving behaviors. If they can’t speed, then they’re automatically in less danger.

Fuel efficiency is definitely a factor that teens should look at since they’ll be filling their gas tanks from now on. Lucky for them, the Focus has an excellent fuel economy at 28/38 MPG. This car has a sporty appearance as well with wrapping tail lights, crisscross bumper material, and a trunk lid lip and skirt.

Although consumers don’t like the steering wheel controls half as much as the Elantra’s, they do like the attractive blue gauge lighting. Not a bad car to look at, but I would still personally recommend the Elantra.

Chevy Sonic

2013 Sonic RS NAIS

Parents can’t go wrong with the Chevy Sonic. The Sonic launched in 2011 to replace Aveo and tied with the Fiesta for the 6th highest hatchback vehicle. IIHS designates it as a Top Safety Pick. The government gives it five stars in side, frontal, and overall protection. In other words, the Sonic can handle a crash.

The safety features will also impress parents. It includes:

• stability control
• traction control
• anti-lock brakes
• front knee airbags

A quick look at an informative car insurance blog will tell you that these features and ratings do more than protect your kids. They’ll also help keep your insurance prices low.

Okay, let’s get to the good stuff. Teens love the sound controls, aerodynamic front end, and the circular tail lamps for a sporty look. Since this has a hatchback, the back end is flat, which makes parking a breeze whether you’re pulling into a stall or parallel parking in the city. I would be interested in test driving this vehicle to compare its performance and handling to the Elantra and Focus.

Volkswagen Jetta

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The Jetta has a long history as one of the world’s safest cars. Although the appearance isn’t as sporty, it has the kind of styling that won’t embarrass your kids when they pull up to the school parking lot.
The government gives this car four out of five stars, but the IIHS gives it its highest rating in roof strength, frontal-offset collisions, and side collisions.

The VW Jetta comes in a large range of trim levels, so you can choose one that matches your budget and your safety concerns. Standard features include:

• active front head restraints
• side curtain airbags
• stability control
• traction control
• front side airbags

Teens will love the interior space with a roomy backseat and comfort when they’re cruising around with their friends. While the Jetta has a simple and understated design, it’s not a bad value for the money.

If teens wants to personalize their car, there are plenty of ways to make it burst with character, such as a new paint job, spoiler, shiny rims, modern headlights, grills and tinted windows. Just know that too much personalization may attract the cops like a magnet (I know from experience).

Luckily, there are some car options that will please both teens and parents when they normally don’t see eye-to-eye. Which of these cars would you prefer as a teen driver? Why? Any other vehicles that you believe should make the list?

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