The biggest issue in finding the best cars for teen drivers is that there are two deciding factors involved: the teens driving the cars, and the parents paying for the cars (and those two factors often don’t see eye to eye). The best way to go about finding out which route to go is t explore both perspectives thoroughly.


Shall we?

We didn’t forget about price

Of course, when looking only at cost as a factor, going for a used car seems like your best bet. It’s definitely going to be cheaper, and you could be getting great value for an otherwise luxury vehicle. However, its important to note that if you’re looking for best first car for your teenager, used cars might not be your ideal route to take. He reason being that just because a car seems like it’s a good value, doesn’t necessarily make it one of the most reliable cars out there. In fact, used cars generally lack the necessary safety features and up to date hardware and software you need to sleep well at night.


A new car is your other option. If you’re going the new car route, you’re probably best served leasing instead of buying. You’d get a better make/model for cheaper and without the commitment of buying a car.

Teens needs

These needs can typically be broken down into two distinct categories: the best cars for teens who are girls and the best cars for teens who are boys. Generally speaking, a car needs to fulfill certain criteria to be considered a good car for teens. They should include a lot of space for friends, the newest tech, high performance, and a great sound system. Girls generally like cars that are more practical, where guys go for cars  that focus more on performance.

Parents needs

Parents are more likely to lean toward the most reliable cars for their teenagers. The best first cars in a parent’s mind has some safety features and is relatively cheap. Additionally, having a GPS system in a car is a plus for parents being that they can be reassured that their child will never be lost while driving.

Our top 3 picks if price isn’t a big issue

  • Lexus IS: this car is luxurious while also keeping up with young trends. It’s high performance, super sporty, and, most importantly, very safe.
  • Mercedes C class: this sporty car has an extremely luxury feel through and through, while also providing protection as it boasts an especially high safety rating.
  • Audi A4: this car offers a bunch of package options for you to choose from so you can have all the ad-ons you want in luxury. It also provides one of the highest crash-test safety scores out there.


Our top 3 picks for teens if price is a big issue

  • Nissan Sentra: this car is available at a great price point and will also save you a ton on gas. Also a huge bonus on this guy is that your insurance is probably going to be a little lower if your teen drives on of these due to its reputation for being a safe car.
  • Ford Mustang: this car is great for both sides of the argument. It’s definitely a cool car that drives fast and looks sporty, while also keeping within a budget. It probably lacks a little on the safety side of things but otherwise, it’s a great low cost option for a first car.
  • Honda civic: Honda civics are also super cost-efficient and have a widely loved body and interior. With all the money you’ll be saving on monthly payments, you could also get all the newest tech features with this car.

The safety features you shouldn’t cheap out on

Unless you’re driving a really old car, you can expect your kid’s car to come with anti lock brakes, seat belts, and airbags. An additional safety feature that will be sure to pay off is electronic stability control. It’s a preventative measure to stop accidents before they happen and are super useful for teens who don’t have full control of the car they’re driving yet. Collision detectors/avoidance systems, backup cameras, and blind spot monitors also all come in handy.