It can be difficult trying to find a new car for your teen to drive. You want an affordable car and one that prioritizes road safety, so your teen is safer during a crash if the worst were to happen. Thankfully, U.S. News published its 2021 list of the best-used cars for teens, making the choice that much easier. One of the cars it chose was the 2018 Honda Accord, listed as the “Best Used Midsize Car for Teens.” Read on to find out U.S. News’ methodology behind its list, more about the 2018 Honda Accord, and tips to keep in mind when car shopping for teens.
U.S. News’ methodology behind its “Best Used Cars for Teens” list
Each year, U.S. News puts out its list of the best new and used cars for teens. U.S. News states that its criteria are “across five segments, and looks for a winning combination of several components. This includes overall quality, high safety ratings, strong reliability, low long-term ownership costs, and accident avoidance technologies.”
The cars also include relevant data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), which publishes its Top Safety Pick winners each year. Some of the models even earned the Top Safety Pick+, which is its highest honor. It also considers data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), another trusted source for safety rankings.
While U.S. News states that used cars don’t necessarily offer the best combination of features, they tend to be more affordable than newer models. The used model years it chose this year include cars from 2016-2018, where the 2018 Honda Accord was a notable pick.
Overview of the 2018 Honda Accord
Among its list, U.S. News chose the 2018 Honda Accord, which was rated as the “Best Used Midsize Car for Teens.” In terms of IIHS ratings, it was a Top Safety Pick in 2018 and scored ‘Good’ on its six different crash tests. The NHTSA listed it as earning five stars. Along with raw safety data, it also has numerous safety features which aren’t always found on older models. It has limited automation features, such as lane keep assist and automatic emergency braking. It also has a rearview camera, which is useful for parking.
The Honda Accord also earned its place on the list for affordability. It has a fuel efficiency of about 33 mpg, which is generally considered good. Choosing a vehicle with a greater fuel efficiency winds up costing you less over the long term since you don’t have to refuel as often. In addition, it retails at around $25,000-$32,000. According to Kelley Blue Book, the average price of a midsize car is $25,000. Depending on where you purchase it from, it will meet that average cost barrier.
What to avoid when buying a teen a car
Beyond the Honda Accord as a top pick, U.S. News has a few tips on what to avoid when buying a teen a car. The first is size. You don’t want to buy a car that’s too small because it’s usually less safe in crashes. However, you don’t want to buy a large truck either, as trucks require more driving skills.
The second is a high seating capacity. Teens shouldn’t have many passengers because each new passenger is at risk of injury if the inexperienced teen crashes. Increased passengers can also be distracting, especially with people who are rather loud or rowdy. This makes it increasingly difficult for the teen driver to focus.
The last is too much horsepower. Cars capable of reaching higher hp can be tempting for many teens, who may want to drive faster than they should. Cars with higher horsepower also have higher acceleration, which means they can also be more difficult to control at those high speeds.