Need to buy reliable used car for kids-suggestions as to make/model?

<p>Thanks all. I was thinking about what I think refers to collision insurance ( repairs or replaces you or the other persons car)....that liability part is very scary...Fortunately my H deals with all this so "we" are not as ignorant as I sound, but since I'm always quoting CC these days, I thought I might as well pontificate about car insurance too...</p>

<p>mini - you're a man! Sorry if that seems a bit random - until today I thought you were a female.</p>

<p>I would buy used, but new enough that it has all the airbags. I'd be looking for decent milage. We had a Ford for five years, and it always had something wrong with it. I'm happy driving a Toyota again. DH drives a Corolla. It's not sexy, but it has never given us a day of trouble.</p>

<p>Forgot to add - State Farm has a program called Steer Clear which involves documenting driving practice and looking at a DVD - the teen gets a discount if it is completed. Most companies give a discount for good grades too.</p>

<p>Well, you check on that with Mrs. Mini. :)</p>

<p>Oh man, that good grades thing will really motivate my son! He's been saving for a car since he was about 13 ( a series of CD's) but he knows how we worry about the insurance. Hmmmm...</p>

<p>I'll take your word for it.</p>

What about insurance on a new car for a teenage boy?


Expensive. The type of vehicle matters and a 4x4 will be more expensive as well as anything deemed a sports car. Note that SUV doesn't mean 4x4 since most of them nowadays don't actually have a low-range 4wd if they have a 4wd at all (my Tucson doesn't). The other factor assuming you'll get collision coverage is the value of the car and its cost to repair. The other big factor is the car itself and its safety features.</p>

<p>It's worthwhile checking with your insurance company with a specific model first, especially if you're open to multiple models. You can also check with them and see if they have recommended models and ask why they recommend those models.</p>

<p>If your insurance company offers it and you have your homeowners and car insurance with the same carrier, you can get lower liability levels and buy an umbrella policy that covers everything. Sometimes that is cheaper. You don't want to skimp on the liability coverage - the higher the better. You don't want to risk losing your home if your teenager causes an accident. It is best to get higher liability coverage and then get a high deductible to save some money.</p>

<p>I promise to do my own homework, but does anybody have a reccomendation that might appeal to a vain teenage boy that looks a little sporty but isn't a sports car but is safe and a good value? When I was in college I had a karmen ghia that I restored with porsche parts ( and was stolen and stripped the first time I parked on the street in Westwood) but he's not interested.</p>

<p>shrinkrap, collision coverage is for your own car only, not the other party's. Your liability coverage is for damage to someone else's property, and for injuries. The umbrella policy is an excellent idea. The other thing to explore is the cost savings which may be available if you have your car, homeowner, and umbrella policies all with the same company.</p>

<p>Shrinkrap, take a look at the Mazda 3 5-door. It looks zoomy on the outside, but it's a perfectly respectable economy car under the skin. (Actually it has better handling and brakes -- especially brakes -- than most similar cars. It's probably the coolest thing in its price range, either new or used.)</p>

<p>We sometimes make our own used cars ;) keep them for as long as we can and pass them down the "food chain".</p>

<p>We once had a cash-cow car like mini's: totalled b/c reattaching the bumper in a collision shop would have cost more than the car was worth at the time. A $40 purchase of a rubber mallet, Bondo and spray paint did the job (this was before the laws change; we did not have to re-purchase the title). The car was ultimately passed down the "food chain" and was totalled again by a crazy cab driver near MSFT campus. The new owner did not have to spend anything, he already had our repair kit!</p>

<p>I love this thread b/c I've got tired of all the political ones!</p>

<p>Here is a good site for you - top 10 cool cars for teens in 2006</p>

<p><a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>My D says the guys really like her Mazda 3 - they say it's "fresh." Whatever that means. They all want to drive it, but she won't let anyone near the driver's seat. She has the hatchback which we think actually looks sportier than the sedan. It is sporty but safe and I got a great deal on an '05 with 19k miles - got an extended warranty for good measure. Another guy friend of hers has a Passat that he likes a like. My D says the guys think the Jetta is a chick car but the Passat - not so much.</p>

<p>Well I know his dream car is/was a Mazda RX-8....</p>

<p>My dream car was the Mazda RX-7. I ordered one in 1983 and picked it up the day I took the bar exam and drove it for the first time after I bought it. I loved that car - so much fun, but not practical. It was rear wheel drive and it stranded me more times than I can count and we don't get that much snow in Maryland. It cost a fortune to repair but it is still going - my ex husband has it and it has at least 200k miles on it - that rotary engine never stops. I never really liked the RX-8 as much - the old RX-7s were the best.</p>

<p>Shrinkrap, put some pics of some ugly old boat-like cars on your desk so your kid can see them, pretend that you are researching a car for him. He will then embrace any one from cartera's list with burning passion!</p>

<p>A friend once bought an older Ford Mustang for his kid. I was shocked that this father was endangering his son's life by buying him a spots car! The father just laughed: that particular Mustang had such a puny engine it would never go over 60 mph. When parked at school, the car sill was a "chick magnet" effect.</p>

<p>Good idea. Of course so far we are talking bikes and busses. He is appalled by the idea we may pass down his sisters accura, since she will not likely be able to use it in her first year of college. Spoiled kids...I drove an old volkswagon 412 when I bought my first car in college. Didn't get the ghia until halfway through medical school.</p>

<p>Shrinkrap - tell him it would ruin his dream for someone other than him to
buy his dream car. My parents bought me a brand new Ford Pinto in 1975 - not my dream car but I was so proud. Except for the tailpipe falling off on a road trip, I never had a single problem with it and put about 150k miles on it.</p>

<p>I noticed the Scion xB on a couple of posts. The old micro-box xB is no longer available -- the new one is a much larger Element-type of vehicle. It's probably more useful but the "cool" factor has fallen off the table. If you are looking for used ones you should be good, but the new one is a old-farts car. (I never "got" the boxy xB myself, but I can make room for the passion of others.)</p>