These are the 18 best new cars for teens, report says

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Following up on their list of affordable used cars released over the summer, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and Consumer Reports have teamed up to recommend the best new vehicles for teens to drive.

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The auto safety and testing organizations compiled a group of 18 cars and SUVs with the highest crash test ratings, automatic emergency braking, solid handling and braking performance, easy to use controls and high levels of reliability.

Vehicles lighter than 2,750 pounds, large SUVs and models with high average insurance costs were left off the list, which ranges in price from $22,000 to $37,000.

“It can be tempting to buy a tiny, bare-bones model for a teenager, but we know that teenagers are among the riskiest drivers, so it’s important not to skimp on safety,” IIHS President David Harkey said in a press release on the report.

“Spending a bit more for state-of-the-art crash protection and crash avoidance features is a worthy investment in your child’s future.”


The list isn't just meant for shoppers buying a car for a teen, but also for families with a young driver who'll share the car or get it as a hand-me-down one day.

Here is the full unranked list categorized by vehicle type.


Honda Insight: $22,000

Mazda 3 (sedan and hatchback): $22,100

Toyota Corolla (XLE/XSE sedan + Advanced Lighting; XSE hatchback + Preferred package): $23,400


Subaru Legacy: $22,100

Honda Accord (excluding Touring 2.0T and Touring Hybrid): $23,300

Mazda 6: $23,800

Nissan Altima (SR, SV, SL and Platinum trims): $24,900

Subaru Outback (built after October 2019): $25,900


Mazda CX-3: $20,700

Subaru Forester: $23,900

Mazda CX-5: $25,200

Chevrolet Equinox (LT only): $27,000

Honda CR-V (Touring and all hybrid trims): $27,900

Lexus UX (with Triple-Beam LED Headlamps with Auto-Leveling): $32,800

Kia Sportage (SX Turbo only; built after September 2019): $33,000

Toyota RAV4 (Hybrid Limited only with Adaptive Front Headlight System): $36,900


Hyundai Santa Fe (SEL trim with Premium package or Limited trim): $32,700

Mazda CX-9 (built after December 2019): $32,700

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