Your Teen’s First Car: Shopping Tips for Nervous Parents

teens first car

You’ve watched them take their first steps, enter high school, and now it’s time for them to get behind the wheel.  Parents never retire from being concerned for their kids, but when it comes to teen’s getting on the road, a bit of nervousness is warranted.  Here are some tips to ease anxiety and to ensure you’re making a wiser investment.

Dated Model

Teens dream of getting a new car the day they get their license, but when it comes to insurance, a new car is not the most economical decision.  Insurance companies are skittish when it comes to new drivers, and statistics reinforce the reluctance.  On the other hand, investing in an old car means that you may have to pay for more maintenance in addition to worrying about dated safety features.  For these reasons, it’s best to invest in a car model that is a few years old.  Doing so gives parents a break on high insurance payments while easing concerns about obsolete or limited safety features.

Limited Power

A few manufacturers have a reputation for issuing fast models of cars, such as Mustangs, Corvettes, etc.  While your teen is likely to get excited about driving a fast machine, it’s not a very practical purchase considering the teen’s limited experience behind the wheel.  Therefore, it’s suggested to invest in a model with a four-cylinder engine.  The car may not sound as loud and powerful, but teen drivers will stay in better control.


As with the age of the vehicle, it’s best to consider investing in a model that is somewhere in the middle of the road regarding size.  A larger vehicle poses difficulty regarding steering and parking while a small car will offer less protection in the event of a crash.  However, a mid-sized sedan will be relatively easy to control and park.  Moreover, a larger car will better protect the driver and occupants in a crash.

Safety Features

Of course, you can’t put a limit on the number of safety features you want in your child’s vehicle, but make sure the model they drive has the basics like anti-lock brakes, stability control, and driver/passenger-side airbags.  Also, consider paying for added driving lessons, which will teach your teen to be aware on the road and a defensive driver.  Lessons can lessen the chance of your teen getting into an accident.  Of course, you can’t control how well others drive on the road so maintain the information of Chiumento Selis Dwyer.

Reasonable Price

You must be practical and consider the cost of a vehicle.  Some families have more of a budget for additional cars, but regardless of your economic status, it’s important that your teen learns the value of a dollar.  If a car is something, they want then consider having them pitch in towards the car, insurance, and paying for gas.  Some teens begin working jobs after school years before they are old enough to drive.

Educated Assistance

Lastly, don’t be shy about asking for help or added insight.  You can speak to a representative at your insurance agency about best choices.  Agents can help keep your premiums affordable and can draw on experience in working with other moms and dads.


Leo Pickering is Dad to 3 boys ranging in age from 17-22. Right now, when he’s not at work, his life revolves around driving lessons, driving tests and going out to look at used cars. He has decided to share his knowledge with other parents!

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