Summertime is usually a busy season for teen drivers as many prepare to get their driver’s license during the school break. A new driver in the family can also mean that a new car is needed. However, as new car production has dropped over the past year and the prices of used cars have skyrocketed, teens and novice drivers may find it harder to buy safe cars to drive.
A global shortage of microchips has caused a drop in the production of new cars. Simultaneously, prices of used cars shot up in 2020, making used cars very expensive for parents of young teen drivers. Typically, parents of teen drivers prefer to buy used cars so that their children gain experience driving in an affordable car before they move on to a new car of their own. This has also traditionally been the thinking of parents in the Atlanta area for decades.
However, the market for used cars has ballooned in 2021, and prices for some models have increased significantly. This means that many teens now have a much smaller range of models from which to choose. The danger is that many parents might neglect the importance of safety features when buying a car for their child. Many older cars do not come with key safety technologies, and it is likely that in a seller’s market parents may feel the pressure to choose a car that is within their budget but not necessarily the safest one for their child.
Consumer Reports and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently updated their list of most affordable and reliable first cars for teenagers in 2021. The list asks families to put safety on top of their priority list. Key safety equipment like adequate airbags must be on top of your list even if this costs more. Strength, stability and structure are also key points to keep in mind while buying an automobile for your teenage child. Unfortunately, you might be expected to pay more for these features in this market.
Larger vehicles like SUVs are much safer for teenagers, but may not be affordable. If you can find it within your budget to buy a larger car for your teenager, do so. According to the Consumer Reports study, many used car models this year are more expensive than they were at the same time last year. Consumer Reports was able to identify at least 61 models in the used car market that meet safety and reliability parameters.
Buying a safe car for a teen driver is key, mainly because these drivers lack the skills and experience to avoid accidents. A car with the right safety features can protect inexperienced drivers from injuries in an accident. Teens and new drivers are especially vulnerable to being in serious accidents due to their relative limited time of navigating all the challenges of driving. Equipping them with the safest vehicle possible may help prevent them from suffering serious injuries.
If your child has just begun driving, refer to the Consumer Reports list here to find affordable vehicles that are also high on safety and reliability.
If your loved one has been injured in a car accident, talk to an Atlanta car accident attorney at the Katz Law Firm to determine your legal options for a claim for damages. You could be eligible for damages that include medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and other types of compensation. Talk to an attorney at our firm, and discuss your case. Initial consultations are free.