For highschoolers across America, graduation time is also when they receive their first car. It is a momentous occasion in the life of your child, and marks a major step towards adulthood. The decision of what car to buy for your teen, can be nerve-racking. As Atlanta car accident attorneys and parents, we know that this is not a decision that taken carelessly. It’s also not a decision taken under pressure from your teen.
Here is some advice for you as you decide to buy your teen a first car.
Don’t assume that the car your child wants, is the right car. Typically, boys prefer fast, high-performance sports cars. However, these vehicles may not be the best choice. Experts suggest that you buy a larger car for teen motorists. A larger midsize SUV or pickup truck is an ideal choice, because bigger vehicles have traditionally been found to protect their passengers better in an accident. There are technical reasons for this. You’re definitely safer if you’re sitting at a level higher from other fenders on the freeway.
However, if you’re planning on an SUV, know that these vehicles also come with a higher risk of a rollover. Traditionally sports-utility vehicles and pickup trucks have this issue, and also run a higher risk of ejecting their vehicle’s occupants during a rollover accident.
Look for cars that come with the latest safety features, like Electronic Stability Control systems. These systems have been responsible for saving thousands of lives over the years. Side airbags are another nifty feature that protects your child during side impact crashes. However, these features may not be available on older vehicles. If you’re shopping for a used car, look for a model that has at least some of the more advanced safety features that your car has. The more safety features, the better.
Look up the website of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and other organizations for crash test information. These can help you make a choice even if your budget only allows for a used vehicle.
However, Atlanta car accident lawyers and auto safety advocates would agree on one thing – no matter what make or model the car, it’s important that your child be equipped with the right driving skills, training and knowledge, in order to drive safely.