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Tips On Purchasing A Vehicle For A New Driver

By Expert Author: Mary Vaughan

The moment is here. Your teen has done their time sitting through hours of driving school. You also have done your time, sitting in the passenger seat, maybe white-knuckled, as they excitedly ventured out on the road for their first drives. They have passed the road test and now the moment is here; the moment you decide they need a car. There is much to consider when you start looking a car that not only meets your teens expectations but leaves you with a peace of mind.

Choosing the Perfect Vehicle

This is your teenís first car and it will not be the only one they ever own. It is more important that it be the perfect car for you, the parent, than for your child. What vehicle are you comfortable with your child driving? Research things like safety ratings, crash test information, performance, and reliability. This data is easily accessed through companies like National Highway Traffic Safety Association, Kelly Blue Book, and J.D. Power and Associates. Sports cars and vehicles with a high-center-of-gravity are more powerful and harder to handle. This makes them more dangerous and consequently, higher to insure. Unless your teen learned to drive on a manual transmission, it may be a good idea to stick to vehicles with automatic transmissions. Driving a manual, especially if just learning, is an unnecessary distraction.

New or Used

In most cases it will not be monetarily logical to get a new car for your teen. Though buying new does allow some peace regarding breakdowns and repairs, new cars are usually much more expensive to insure. There is also the possibility of small fender benders and the depreciation in value of a new vehicle to consider. If you do decide to buy new, check trends in depreciation for car companies and their car models. If you settle on a used car, look at the Kelly Blue Book for reviews and values of different cars you are considering.


Insurance is already expensive and a teen driver will increase the cost dramatically. So, it is important to do research to get the best deal possible. Should your teen be insured under your existing policy or on a separate policy? The answer to this varies greatly between insurance companies. It should be cheaper to insure a young driver under their parentís policy, unless the company requires that the teen be rated under all vehicles on the policy. In this is the case it might be a cheaper option to get a separate policy, thus the company is only charging this higher rate on one vehicle. There are some discounts to look for. Safety equipped vehicles get a discount, so look for cars that have features like anti-lock brakes and airbags. Many insurance companies also reward good grades; this gives you a two for one punch. It helps your childís motivation at school and allows you to take advantage of the discount.

Buying the right car for a teen is fraught with important decisions, but can also be very rewarding. By doing a little research, looking at all your options, and shopping around, you can make a, financially sound, final choose that makes you comfortable, and your young driver happy.

Mel Rapton Honda has a fully stocked lot with all the latest new Honda cars, trucks and SUVs. We proudly serve the entire Sacramento area. If you are searching for Honda dealers in Sacramento using the keywords Honda CR-V Sacramentos or Honda CR-Z Sacramento, visit our dealership today.

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