's Annual Young Drivers Guide


Every year compiles not only lists of the best new and used cars for teen drivers, but we also deliver tips on everything from financing to safety and the most common myths among young drivers. If you’re a teenager looking to get a new car, or if you know one, this is a must-read. Now when your parents start the inevitable inquisition about whether you’re ready for a car, you’ll have a lot of answers in hand.

Young Drivers Guide (

By David Thomas | June 4, 2007 | Comments (6)



I found the list of new cars for teens amusing. A Chevy Impala? A Volvo S40? A Mini Cooper? In a perfect world that may be so, but how many teenagers want to be seen in a family car? Why would they need that much space? How would they pay for the fuel? And how many parents want to invest $30k on a car for a brand new inexperienced driver? Realistically, if it's going to be a new car, it's probably going to be a sub $15k compact that's efficent, safe, and affordable. More so, many teenagers earn the money for a car themselves and can't afford a car that's worth more than $5k. There are many choices at this price range that are still reliable, safe, fuel-efficent, cheap to insure, and wouldn't be a huge loss if it's wrecked.

We listed a wide range of cars including the affordable Honda Fit, Scion tC, Corolla etc.
There are very few sub $15K new cars out there however.

The Impala was listed because we have gotten a lot of comments from young drivers complaining about the list not having a large sedan!

And we obviously couldn't list every used model out there or the list would be endless and not so useful.



Fuel is cheap and many midsize cars (4 cylinder Accords) do not use much more fuel than small sedans. Many teens use parent's fuel card.

Often parents can impose car choice for safety reasons.

Many parents are rich (especially parents buying new cars for kids). Often the difference between a well-equipped small sedan and a base mid-size is small.

If you only can spend $5, the new car list is not for you; check the used list.


The Impala is indefensible. It is really anti-cool.

Why not list a just as safe, but cool midsize sedan like a Mazda6? or maybe a Altima, Fusion or Jetta depending on your taste.

Some of those picks I can't endorse; such as the Highlander and Crown Vic. For a teen driver the dangers increase *exponentially* with the number of passengers. I happen to know for a fact that you can fit at least 11 people in a Crown Vic (plus three or four in the truck, but they don't cause much trouble). For this reason I don't think the MX-5 is really that bad.

Cool Guy

Might i also recommend the Nissan Xterra.. I am 19 i own one and i think its great. I know my friends and i love to camp and go over stuff for fun. I'm averaging about 19 mpg, and i was only getting 21 mpg in my Nissan Altima 3.5SE that i replaced for my X. My insurance is also $700 less than my Altima.. I did the math and that pays for the fuel difference and then some!


OK look my brothers a mechanic, he says change your oil every 3000-4000 mils, your car will last longer and run a lot better. 7500 miles is WAY to long.

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