The Best Used Cars for Teen Drivers
Life + Money

The Best Used Cars for Teen Drivers

© Mazda / David Dewhurst

Getting a driver’s license is a rite of passage, but one that many moms and dads don’t look forward to. Parents worry most about their teens driving without supervision, according to a recent survey from General Motors.

Slideshow: The 15 Best Used Cars for Teen Drivers

When buying a car for a new teen driver, parents should carefully balance safety concerns, budget constraints and their child’s wish list of desirable features. For many parents, a used car makes sense. Here are some things to consider:

  • Get the newest, most dependable used model with the most safety features you can afford.
  • Look for cars with advanced safety features like electronic stability control (available in all cars made in 2012 or later) and curtain airbags.
  • Check crash-test results.
  • Avoid large pick-up trucks SUVs that are prone to roll over, and sports cars that increase speeding risks and have higher rates of accidents.
  • Anti-lock brakes are a must.
  • Inspect used cars thoroughly since regular maintenance and care can affect performance and reliability.
  • Check for recalls that affect the car model.

In its annual rankings of both new and used cars, Consumer Reports highlights some vehicles as particularly good picks for teens and other new drivers. The list includes small cars, wagons, hatchbacks, sedans and small SUVs. Click here to see the  “CR Good Bets” for teens.