Every U.S. teenager looks forward to getting a car – the first and very important sign of independence and becoming adult. But this is also a primary concern for parents. The question is: are they ready to drive their first car when going to school? Is it safe?
According to scientific studies, teens are the highest –at-risk group when we speak of road accidents. Vehicle collisions are the primary cause of death for drivers ranging from 15 to 20 years old. And the highest thread of accident for teens is in the first months after getting their licenses.
Buying a new car for a teen driver is a real headache and, of course, this is the theme worth to be mentioned. At first let’s turn to money side as a car for a teen driver can be expensive in a number of ways. The car itself costs a considerable sum of money; add to this sum insurance costs, the eventual repair and maintenance costs.
But if you try to save money on the car it can cost you in other ways. Safety is often the second or third consideration, but it should be equal if not leading. You have to consider the main points: reliability and safety. This is particularly complicated for those who are analyzing the possibility of used vehicle judging to its lower price and lower insurance costs. That means you’ll have to consider not which car, but what model year you want to look for.
Intending to buy a car for their teen, parents often think that a bigger one means safer. That’s the common mistake. A bigger car can offer greater protection in a collision, but it can also mean a greater likelihood of getting into a collision in the first place. Generally, it is more difficult to handle big cars and, consequently, to get out of tight situations such as urban traffic, especially for inexperienced young driver. Also, the vehicle’s sheer mass can make it harder to keep under control in emergency situations. Besides, you should take into account the insurance rates, which are very high for big vehicles as a bigger, heavier car will also do more damage to whatever it hits.
Young drivers should avoid big SUVs as their added ride height only increases all the problems of a large car, especially risk of a dangerous rollover accident. Furthermore, don’t forget that larger cars get poor fuel economy and this will increase the car owing expenses. We advise your teen to start with a safe midsize or small car.
Nowadays almost all vehicles, new or used, are equipped with front impact airbags. So, in no case get a car without them. Look for ones with side impact airbags, as well, particularly head-protecting side airbags. They will help to protect passengers in the event the vehicle is struck from the side by an SUV or truck.
Anti-lock brakes also play a very important role in car’s safety. They are available not only in new but also in most of used vehicles as well. Electronic stability control, which helps to keep a vehicle under control during abrupt maneuvers, has been available for only a few years. So, you’ll hardly be able to find it in used cars. But if you are going to get a SUV, electronic stability control is absolutely necessary.
Also avoid getting a performances car for a young driver. Be sure that your teen will have enough temptations to speed and drive aggressively. Don’t provide him her with a car that practically begs for it. The faster you drive the more likely you’ll get into road accident.
In addition to all this, the performance vehicle costs more to insure. We have already mentioned in one of the previous articles that the insurance costs for young drivers are rather high. Why increase them buying an expensive car?
But this doesn’t mean that your teen’s car should be old, shabby and boring. Among cars highly recommended for teen drivers are the Honda Civic, Ford Focus and Mazda3, all of which are engaging, quick, and enjoyable to drive.
Today, with 88 percent of teens using cars to drive to school now is the time for parents to consider the safety of their teens’ vehicles according to the modern technologies. It is vital for parents and teens to choose cars carefully and, while doing that, safety should be the number-one priority.