From driver's education classes to driving with a learner's permit and finally getting a license, the different steps needed to prepare your child to drive legally on the road can be challenging. Even though you may feel you and your teen are prepared for this rite of passage, having a teen with a driver's license can be stressful. Having your teen drive your own vehicle may be cost effective, but this can become a nuisance, since this requires juggling commutes to work, school, and other destinations throughout the family.
By purchasing a vehicle for your new teen driver, you can ensure everyone has a method of getting where they need to go. Of course, buying a vehicle for an inexperienced driver should be taken seriously. With this guide, you will know what to look for when it is time to purchase your teen's first car.
One of the most common misconceptions people believe is that a larger, bulkier vehicle is safer for inexperienced drivers. While a large vehicle, such as a truck or sport utility vehicle, does offer more protection, it is not necessarily safer for your teen.
Large trucks and SUVs are more difficult to maneuver, increasing your inexperienced driver's risk of getting into an accident.
Professionals now advise parents to consider a mid-size sedan for new drivers. These cars are larger than compact cars, adding some protection between your teen, other cars, and the road, but they are easier for an inexperienced driver to handle. When compared to a SUV or off-road vehicle and sport's car, your teen will be less likely to speed and drive aggressively in a mid-size sedan.
You should never allow an inexperienced driver to operate a vehicle that does not have anti-lock brakes. The anti-lock braking system is an imperative safety feature that could mean the difference between life and death when your teen is driving on roads that are wet, frosty, or icy.
Anti-lock brakes prevent the brakes from locking up when you try to stop the car on slick roads. If the brakes lock up, you will not be able to control the steering wheel or stop in an efficient, effective manner. Without an ABS, or anti-lock braking system, your teen driver will have a higher risk of an accident.
All new cars come equipped with an ABS. if you are considering an older vehicle for your teen, make sure it offers this feature.
While shocking to hear, 11 teen drivers die each day due to texting while driving. Watching your teen every minute of the day is not possible, but you should educate your new driver on the risk. Texting, making phone calls, streaming music, taking photos, and posting or scrolling through social media are all dangers your teen must avoid.
To reduce the risk of your teen using a phone while driving, it should be placed in the glove compartment box or trunk before starting the engine. With a Bluetooth feature in the car, your teen can safely answer important phone calls without taking their eyes off the road or hands off the steering wheel.
You may also want to consider installing an innovative feature that is connected to your teen's smartphone and the car's engine. The device places the phone in driving mode, which connects the phone directly to Bluetooth before your teen is able to start the engine. The feature also places a block on the smartphone, which prevents your teen from answering or replying to calls, texts, and emails.
With the right-sized car and important safety features, your teen's first car will be a smart investment.