Choosing your teenager’s first car can be rough. You want something that is safe, reliable, easy for inexperienced drivers to use, and not prohibitively expensive. The following top five picks all have average or above average reliability, key safety features, are moderately priced, and more. Whether you choose to buy your teenager’s used car at a dealership or elsewhere, it is important to have your car thoroughly checked out by qualified technicians at a Volkswagen Service Center to ensure safety and reliability.
1. Chevrolet Malibu 2009 and 2010 models. This redesigned sedan handles responsively, operates quietly, and makes for a good ride. Its four-speed automatic transmission paired with a 169 horsepower, 2.4 liter four cylinder engine delivers a respectable 23 mpg. While not the most exciting of cars, it is a solid vehicle at a solid price. Additionally, it comes standard with great features like anti-lock brakes, traction control, six airbags, satellite radio, and an auxiliary audio jack.
2. Ford Focus Sedan 2009 and 2010 models. Not always known for its cars, Ford’s Focus Sedan is a welcome exception. With a spaciously plush interior and agile, responsive handling, it is a great choice for teenagers. The Focus is a bit noisier than other models on the list, but its 26 mpg overall makes it a good economical choice.
3. Volkswagen Jetta 2009 model. Just as the Volkswagen Service Center is known for high quality, the VW Jetta is a sharp-handling premium vehicle. It comes in either an efficient diesel engine or 170 hp, 2.5 liter five cylinder engine delivering 24 mpg. Specifically, the 2009 Volkswagen Jetta model has been rated with better than average reliability and offers key safety features. Standard features include keyless entry, air conditioning, and eight-speaker radio, often with MP3 playback capability and USB connectivity.
4. Mazda6 2009 and 2010 models. For teenagers wanting a sportier look, the Mazda6 might just be your best pick. It has a quality inside feel with nimble handling that makes it a fun drive. Standard safety features include six airbags, traction control, anti-lock brakes, and stability control. On some Mazda6s, you might find a blind spot monitoring system, a great feature that is often only seen on more upscale cars.
5. Hyundai Sonata 2008, 2009, and 2010 models. If safety is your main concern, the Hyundai Sonata has you covered with standard electronic stability control and curtain air bags. While the 2008 model gets an average 23 mpg, an engine redesign in 2009 models deliver a more impressive 26 mpg overall. This is a quieter car that has simplified controls. While the Hyundai Sonata models received average reliability ratings for its vehicle class, it constantly topped with safety gars. This is the car for those looking for practicality and space, but not perhaps for those wanting something with a bit sportier or sleek design.
Buying your teenager’s first car can be nerve wracking. No matter what model you choose, consider taking it to a Volkswagen Service Center or similar quality full-service shop. Be sure that the chosen car has been kept well-maintained and is complete with the necessary safety equipment. With the right car and the right maintenance, your teenager’s passage into car ownership will be a safe and enjoyable one for the whole family.