Nothing is more precious than our children. We try and protect them as long as possible, including when they get their first car.

When it comes time for that purchase we want the safest one possible at a good price, but buying solely on price could compromise their safety. Researching safety and price can be an arduous process but Consumer Reports has done the work for you. After looking at vehicles that have electronic stabilization control, good handling and stopping in emergency maneuver tests, and have blue tooth features to discourage using the phone while driving, they came up with this list of the 10 best used cars for teens under $10,000.

  1. 2009-2012 Chevy Malibu – described as solid, comfortable and safe, starting around $8,100
  2. 2009-2011 Ford Focus – which they call fun to drive with a good view of the road, starting around $6,000
  3. 2010-2012 Ford Fusion – bigger and more sophisticated than its smaller cousin with better handling, starting around $8,000
  4. 2006-2014 Hyundai Sonata – which they described as comfortable and almost luxurious with good gas mileage, starting around $5,200
  5. 2010-2011 Kia Soul – a boxy vehicle that has lots of room and is considered “hip,” starting around $8,600
  6. 2011-2013 Mazda3 – safe, fuel efficient and fun to drive, starting around $9,800
  7. 2009-2013 Mazda6 – a sporty midsized sedan that parents may want to borrow, starting around $8,300
  8. 2004-2012 Toyota Rav4 – plenty of cargo space and all-wheel drive for inclement weather, starting around $7,300
  9. 2009-2010 VW Jetta – a sophisticated small car that handles well with good stability, starting around $7,200
  10. 2009-2014 VW Rabbit/Golf – some of the best selling cars that are still catching on in America with great room and secure handling, starting around $7,700

Most of these vehicles come with a 4 cylinder option, which the Insurance Institute for Highway safety recommends for younger, less skilled drivers.

Here is why safety is such a concern: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of injury and death for U.S. teens. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has found the risk of these crashes is highest among 16-to-19 year olds than any other age group.

California Casualty also has a commitment to the safety of teen drivers. We’ve partnered with law enforcement agencies, safety groups, educators and concerned parents to create and fund Impact Teen Drivers, an intensive campaign to inform young drivers about the dangers of distracted or reckless driving. The nonprofit provides training and powerful tools to help engage teen drivers and change their attitudes behind the wheel.

California Casualty can also make sure your teen drivers are protected with quality auto insurance. Contact an advisor today to learn about some of the best auto insurance rates for teen drivers, 1.800.800.9410 or visit

Sources for this article:

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