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The Safest Used Cars for Teens

June 30, 2016

If you're looking to buy a used car for your teenager, Consumer Reports recently put together a list of what they consider the best (and safest) used cars for teens.

All of the following vehicles performed well in road tests, have advanced safety features such as electronic stability control (ESC) and curtain airbags, as well as good crash-test results.

On the list are popular models such as the 2008 or later Honda Accord, 2011 or later Mazda3, Hyundai Elantra, and Toyota Corolla.

Top Used Car Recommendations

Make and Model
Acura TSX
Buick Regal (2012-2013)
Chevrolet Equinox (4-cyl., 2012 or later)
Chevrolet Malibu (4-cyl., 2009 or later)
Ford Focus sedan (2010-2011)
Ford Fusion (4-cyl. and hybrid, 2010-2012 and 2014 or later)
Honda Accord (4-cyl., 2008 or later)
Honda Civic (2012 or later)
Honda CR-V (2015 or later)
Honda Fit (2011 or later)
Hyundai Elantra (2012 or later)
Hyundai Santa Fe (2007-2009 and 2011-2014, non-3rd row)
Hyundai Sonata (4-cyl., non-turbo, 2006 or later)
Hyundai Tucson (2010 or later)
Kia Forte (2010-2011)
Kia Optima (non-turbo, 2011 or later)
Kia Soul  
Kia Sportage (4-cyl., nonturbo, 2011 or later)
Mazda3 (2011 or later)
Mazda6 i (4-cyl.)
Mazda CX-5
Mitsubishi Outlander (non-3rd row, 2007-2013)
Nissan Altima (4-cyl., 2010-2012)
Nissan Rogue (2010-2013 and 2015)
Nissan Sentra (2011-2012)
Scion xB (2008 or later)
Scion xD (2012 or later)
Subaru Crosstrek
Subaru Forester (non-turbo, 2009 or later)
Subaru Impreza (non-turbo, 2011 or later)
Subaru Legacy (4-cyl., 2009 or later)
Subaru Outback (4-cyl., 2009 or later)
Toyota Camry (4-cyl., 2010 or later)
Toyota Corolla (2010 or later)
Toyota Matrix (2010 or later)
Toyota Prius (2010 or later)
Toyota RAV4 (4-cyl., non-3rd row, 2004 or later)
Volkswagen Jetta (2009-2014)
Volkswagen Jetta/Golf Sportwagen (2009-2014)
Volkswagen Rabbit (2009) / Golf (2010-2014)
Volkswagen Tiguan (2013 or later)
Volvo S60 (2012 or later)

My Recommendation for Car Shoppers

TrueCar No-Haggle, Edmunds Price Promise, and 1-800 Car Show are the quickest way to see the lowest car prices in your area. These sites show you no-haggle prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually really good. This should be the first step you take when negotiating your car price. Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.

California Residents - Important:

There is a new online car buying service called Roadster, available only to California residents, which I highly recommend you try - especially if you hate the stress of haggling with a car salesman. They provide an expert concierge who negotiates the price of the car and delivers it to your home with zero hassle - you never have to interact with a dealership. Here is my in-depth review of Roadster and why I recommend it.

- Gregg Fidan

Gregg Fidan

About: Gregg Fidan

Gregg Fidan + is the founder of RealCarTips. After being ripped off on his first car purchase, he devoted several years to figuring out the best ways to avoid scams and negotiate the best car deals. He has written hundreds of articles on the subject of car buying and taught thousands of car shoppers how to get the best deals.

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