US: top 5 picks for the first-time young driver image

Soon after entering adolescence, the biggest step in a young man’s life would not be getting into the right college, but rather opting for the best first car.

This is usually a major challenge for both the young people and their parents – who first have to reconcile differing views on the best car (yes, not the 1970s Dodge Challenger, nor the Toyota Prius) and then coming up with a budget. The thing is there is so much more to picking up your fabled first car – from important amenities to safety.

So, because everyone knows that the first car for a young driver would act as an experiment – prone to many mishaps – the best way to approach the subject is by going towards a used car, which would be a significantly easier investment then a new car.

From the myriad of options we went for models that are fun to drive, comfortable or/and attractive, economical and most of all, safe and not above a $10,000 budget.

2005- Ford Mustang V6 – the entry-level engine from the iconic muscle car is enough to stir things up, but without keeping the parents up all night. The car has a great retro look, is comfortable and best of all is among the safe picks, as Ford would not dare let us down on the chapter.

2000-2010 Honda Civic – this is an incredible choice for a young driver, but also for any conscious customer. If the car is well maintained it would live up to the fabled Japanese reliability even as you pass the 200,000 miles mark. Besides that, we have good engines, it’s comfortable, safe and best of all it’s design definitely stands out of the crowd.


1998-2004 Toyota Tacoma – pickups are in order for young drivers too, although they pose some additional problems – they have marginal fuel autonomy, they’re heavier and less nimble than an average sedan. Still, with Tacoma as one of the examples, they’re known to be sturdy and reliable and are a great choice for the active, outdoor prone young driver.

1997- Honda CR-V – we needed to hit the SUV segment as well, and one of the best choices (though certainly not the only one, if you dig deep) would be Honda’s well known CR-V. While the older ones come definitely way cheaper, the newer ones improve on the predecessors in every possible way – so you should balance out the pros and cons carefully.

1980s-1990s Mercedes-Benz – while Japanese models are well known for sturdiness, they had good teachers, mainly in the 1980s the German luxury guru Mercedes-Benz. The anecdote says that each passing generation was delivered slightly worse, because the engineers were slapped by the sales guys – the owners would go on to keep forever their old Mercedes and the new ones would lose customer base.