The Safest Used Cars For Your Teen Driver

November 4th, 2015 by

As a parent, one of the scariest moments is when you send your child off for their first independent drive. There’s only so much you can do at that point, but you can at least do you best to protect your kid by pursuing a safe and dependable vehicle for them to drive.

Before you head out to a Lexington, Kentucky car lot, see which used cars you should be targeting. Luckily, Benjamin Zhang over at Business Insider compiled his list of the best car’s for first-time drivers. The writer prioritized the used price, the safety score, and the vehicle’s performance and reliability.

2001-2015 Honda Civic


This vehicle is commended for its longevity and dependability, as Zhang claims the car can last for more than 250,000 miles without running into any issues. Furthermore, since the vehicle is relatively popular, it’s not going to cost you an arm and a leg to acquire some replacement parts (considering they’re common and readily available).

Starting at $5,000, the Civic received a ‘good’ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). If your kid isn’t thrilled with the color or look, the writer notes that the “large aftermarket support” means you can customize the car for little cost.

1999-2006 Toyota Celica


This car has everything a new driver would want: it’s “quick, fun to drive, reliable, and offers a surprising level of utility.” The driver can take advantage of the solid horsepower (140 to 180 based on the four-cylinder engine), and they’ll appreciate the solid fuel economy.

Meanwhile, parents will appreciate the price tag on the used car, which usually starts around $5,500. They’ll also like the ‘good’ rating from the IIHS. Considering it’s a sports car, Zhang warns that you should get a Celica checked out before making a purchase. You never know the kind of toll the previous owner may have put on the car.

1998-2004 Toyota Tacoma


Young drivers certainly like their pickup trucks, especially since they can haul as much junk around as they want. If your kid is begging for a truck, the Tacoma is essentially the only reasonable used option, as it was the only pickup to make the Business Insider list.

Coming in at $5,900, the vehicle received an ‘acceptable’ safety rating. Of course, parents won’t have much to worry about, as the ruggedness and ability to off-road should keep the driver and passengers safe.

2005-2014 Ford Mustang

Behind the Wheel 2011 Ford Mustang

You won’t see too many first-time drivers behind the wheel of this muscle car, but the Ford Mustang is actually a logical choice. Starting at $6,000, the reliable and safe (received a ‘good’ rating) vehicle should certainly be considered when you’re shopping for a used car.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that your kid will absolutely love the vehicle. Featuring an “elegant package with styling that withstands the test of time,” your child will be the talk of the school with their stylish ride.

As you can see, there are a number of logical options when you’re shopping for a first-time buyer. There were also a number of vehicles commended by Zhang that we didn’t include! Regardless, you can be comfortable in knowing that your child will be safe if they’re behind the wheel of one of these cars.