• Apr 14th 2006 at 12:31PM
  • 48
Automotive websites Cars.com and DriversEd.com (a drivers education resource) have teamed up to determine the top new vehicles for teens this year. Criteria used included price, safety, size, and 'fun factor.'
The two sites top picks, broken down in categories, are:

  • Honda Civic      
  • Mazda MX-5
  • Mazda3
  • Mini Cooper           
  • Scion tC       
  • Subaru Impreza 
  • Volvo s40      
  • Nissan Frontier Crew Cab      
  • Toyota Tacoma Double Cab    
  • Hyundai Tucson 
  • Subaru Forester
  • Toyota RAV4    

[Source: PR Newswire via Seattle Post Intelligencer]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago

      How do you like your Civic?
      • 9 Years Ago

      But wasn't it scary when you got kidnapped?
      • 9 Years Ago
      My first car was a 91 Escort GT. It was a bit rusty and not that fast, but I loved that car. I bought it myself at age 15 (6 months before I could even start driving). Even though the car was 11 years old at the time, I treated that car like it was brand spanking new. You could not find a cleaner car in my high school parking lot.

      I eventually "upgraded" to an '86 MR2, which I also paid for, and now it is my pride and joy. I will be keeping this car for many years to come.

      When your parents buy you a brand new car as soon as you get your license, you learn absolutely nothing from that experience. You don't learn personal responsibility, financial responsibility, pride of ownership, etc. etc... Because I was made responsible for researching, funding, and buying my own cars, I have learned so many important life lessons. I learned how to effectively budget my meager income, learned the responsibilities car ownership and maintenance (w/o a warranty), learned important auto repair skills, and learned how to have respect for my property.

      I see those skills severely lacking in the youth I am surrounded by here at college. They have been given everything, and therefore know practically nothing. I feel sorry for them when they really have to experience the "real world" on their own, w/o assistance from their parents. But then again, I have no pity for them.
      • 9 Years Ago
      When my kid turns 16 (in 5 years), he will get my old '99 Accord. It's reliable, safe, has plenty of space (afterall, he does have to run the numerous errands I will be asking for), and for the few occassions he wants to have some fun, it has ample get up and go (200 horsepower is still a lot of ponies). I think that the perfect first car is a good ol' vehcile that has been in the family for awhile. My Accord fits that description and doesn't look that bad. If he wants, he can throw on some rims and a "kickin" system and be with the "in" crowd. But that would be a stupid reason to do such a thing. Then again, we all have to learn some way.
      • 9 Years Ago
      "20. What no Solstice? No H3? No Cobalt? No Caliber? I guess we have to buy imports? NOT!"

      Daddy works for GM huh?

      The cars suggested on the list would be nice to have but how many teens can actually afford them without financial help from parents? That should be called a list of cars for SPOILED/RICH kids. Not to mention insurance rate for a brand new Civic + 16 yr old driver = craziness!
      • 9 Years Ago
      I agree that a teens first car should be something cheap, safe, etc. I didn't get a new car. My dad gave me an 89 s-10 4.3L 5-sp junker and I had to rebuild the clutch. That made it mine. I had a sense of accomplishment. I treated it like it was new, eventually sold it and got a s-15 jimmy, still a pos, but a little bit better that the truck. And I paid cash for it at 17, on my own. I learned alot by HAVING to maintain a semi-unreliable vehicle. I was never stranded, I never felt unsafe. I traded my way up to a 99 TJ Sport by the time I was a senior in high school (it was barely used, had 10,000 miles). I now know alot more about how to care for a car that costs alot of money. I'm 23 now, and I appreciate my '01 S4 and my '04 Tacoma DC 4x4 alot more than any kid that got a new car as a "gift" for making B's.
      • 9 Years Ago
      If I ever have kids...it will be a while...they are getting a cheap POS. Well something reliable but not brand freakin new. I have to laugh though. There was a kid I went to high school with. Probably the worst driver anyone could meet. He wrecked four cars during his years there. The first one was a brand new Explorer. I am talking about a fully loaded Eddie Bauer. The second was a Focus. Fully loaded one, too. The third and this one was dumb, was a Lincoln LS. I cried when I heard that. The fourth was a Mustang. Of course, this kid didnt buy these cars himself, his rich mommy bough them for him.

      But it kind of makes me mad to see kids my age(21) and younger driving BMW's, Lexus, Mercedes, etc. And the majority trash them, too. I have no clue how many BMW's driven by kids I have seen with torn up leather interiors. Its sad. And what makes me even more mad are the parents who just go out and buy them a new one.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Screw fun factor.

      The kid is getting an old, slow, fugly tank-mobile so they aren't tempted to "show off" what their car can do and so there is no need to insure it for more than liability. Their spotty mileage will keep kids from wanting to drive too much... and should there be an accident they will be protected by the sheer massiveness.

      There is a reason millions of old Volvo 240s, toyota camrys, and Domestic midsizes exist, and it's to be a "first time" car.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Funny thing? The maker with the youngest age buyer, VW

      #8 Did you read the article or just the headline? From the article.

      Cars.com and DriversEd.com Announce Top New Cars for Teens
      CHICAGO, April 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Cars.com automotive experts, in
      conjunction with DriversEd.com, America's leading drivers education
      resource, have selected the top new cars for teen drivers. The list
      highlights this year's hottest new cars recommended for teen drivers based
      on a variety of criteria including safety, price, size and "fun factor."


      #2,3,6,7 Right with you

      • 9 Years Ago
      One big diefference.....you helped pay for it and you took care of it. Yeah, you're in the minority; the other 80% think it's a free ticket to get foolish or start a popularity contest. You have class my man and you deserved the beemer.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Reading the comments here make me smile, so had to add I started driving in 1963 at 15 1/2 my first car in 1964 (which I had to buy myself, and was the case with about 90% of the boys I might add) was a 1950 Chevy, slope back. About the newest with the guys in the parking lot was a 59 model.(And I lived in a preety weel to do area of Los Angeles) Reliable? Pretty, but the guys and I can't remember one who didn't made them reliable, we learned to fix them ourselves and pay for the repairs. You know paying for those things, learning how to repair things, built some character and made us appreciate what the real cost of things were.

      Yes, times have changed, the cars are more complex and above some repairs for the average person, but I know from my own kids, they had to go to work, earn their own money, have their insurance set then buy their own car. In the end I helped both out for something a little better on a loan, not a handout.

      Yep, character
      • 9 Years Ago
      My daughter is like a lot of other 17 year olds. Wanted a cool car even before she got her license. For those of you considering small cars--they are just not as safe as a young driver needs. For those thinking SUV or pick-up, teens tend to overcompensate and flip these three times the national average causing fatal crashes.

      That being said, we know that the safest car would be a mid-sized or full sized sedan, but we opted for a Volvo V70 wagon from 2002. Here's why:

      It actually looks cool (sunroof helps with that)
      It's a Volvo so I know it's safe and reliable
      The wagon allows her to move her crap to/from school.
      It has room for friends.
      And, as a 2002, it will last her a bunch of years until she can afford her own car. This will hopefuly get her through five more years.

      There is a line between cool and safe, the V70 might be it.
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