If you’re the parent of a new driver, you are probably wondering about finding the perfect balance between cost and safety for your upcoming vehicle purchase. CarInsurance.com has produced a list of the Best Cars for Teens that can help you make a decision.
The website’s editor Des Toups says that a late model vehicle with great safety equipment can cost the same for insurance as an older model. The new equipment, including improve airbags and electronic emergency braking controls, add up for great insurance savings. However, you will still spend more to insure a teen driver, no matter which car they are driving.
The best teen cars only add a small amount to the family’s insurance premiums for the year. Giving them their own vehicle will cost you about $400 more a year over letting them drive your current car, which breaks down to about $33 a month. Teen drivers are expensive to insure no matter what they are driving. This list was compiled with information released by the Institute for Highway Safety in 2008. Each year they choose some of the most safe vehicles available. Ratings from four years ago were chosen to give parents an idea of what is available in used, but relatively new, cars. All of the models on this list should be available for under $15,000 and get at least 20 miles the gallon.
The cars were ranked by the amount expected to cover insurance for a teen driver for five years. This would cover the period of time between age 16 and 21, when insurance companies drop rates for young adults. The Audi A3 came in first place, with an expected insurance cost of just under $2000. The Honda Accord four-door came in second, at $2040 for five years of insurance. Both of these cars are also especially noted for fuel efficiency and safety. Sporty styling makes them a hit with teens as well.
The Mercury Sable came in third place, but only with the optional electronic stability control package. It came with a quote of $2,610 for insurance costs. The Ford Taurus with ESC was just $60 more at $2670. These cars are not as popular with many teens, but come with plenty of storage space for young drivers with outdoor hobbies. They are also very reliable and affordable to repair.
If you prefer to pick up a SUV for your teen, the Subaru Forester made the 5th place on the list from CarInsurance.com. This models comes with the company’s reputation for making some of the most durable and long-lasting vehicles available today. With the ESC system, the Forester should only cost about $2750 for five years of coverage. The Mercury Milan came in 6th. This luxury sedan is surprisingly affordable at the three year mark, since the website recommends the 2009 model over the 2008. The company added significant safety improvements to the 2009 release that makes it a few hundred dollars cheaper to insure at $2790.
Quite a few other vehicles only made it onto the list when their 2009 models were considered. The Volkswagen Jetta and Rabbit, Subaru Legacy and Impreza, and the Ford Escape were all improved with new safety features that year. These vehicles ranged in insurance fees from $3400 to $4400, with the Impreza being the highest.
Only a few offered fuel savings comparable to the Honda and Audi models that topped the list. Between these vehicles there should be plenty of options that appeal to both cost-conscious parents and their teen drivers.
To get an idea of what the Top 20 list of best cars for teens looks like we’ve provided the top 5. You can see they’re organized with it’s ranking, make and model, price, repair trips per 100 cars, MPG and the 5-year added insurance cost. You almost have to wonder if some of these are the best cars for adults having to commute every day as well!
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