These are the safest vehicles for young drivers, safety group says

A nonprofit has released a list of safe vehicles for teenage drivers.
A nonprofit has released a list of safe vehicles for teenage drivers.

In an effort to curtail teen deaths in vehicle crashes — the leading cause of death for U.S. teens — a nonprofit has compiled a list of the safest vehicles for new drivers.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety updated its criteria for safe vehicles Wednesday, and it lists dozens of used vehicles offering what it considers the best safety choices.

Bigger and heavier vehicles with lower horsepower, electronic stability control and high safety ratings were prioritized.

“More powerful engines can tempt (teen drivers) to test the limits,” the nonprofit stated on its website. And bigger vehicles provide more protection in a crash.

The list was published three days after the death of two teens in Lenexa in a vehicle crash. Seven others, all believed to be teens, were injured.

Purchasing a vehicle from this list may give parents some peace of mind when handing the keys over to young drivers.

teen safe driving
A list of safe vehicles was published by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Wednesday. File image

Best choices (used vehicles under $20,000)

Large cars

Volvo S80, 2007 and newer

Toyota Avalon, 2015 and newer

Midsize cars

Dodge Avenger, 2011-2014

Chrysler 200 sedan, 2011 and newer

Small SUVs

Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, 2011 and newer

Mitsubishi Outlander, 2014 and newer

Midsize SUVs

Volvo XC90, 2005 and newer

Ford Flex, 2010 and newer; built after January 2010


Kia Sedona, 2015 and newer

Honda Odyssey, 2014 and newer

Toyota Sienna, 2015 and newer


Toyota Tundra extended cab, 2014 and newer

Good choices (under $10,000)

Large cars

Ford Taurus, 2009 and newer

Mercury Sable, 2009

Midsize cars

Saab 9-3, 2005–2011

Suzuki Kizashi, 2010–2013

Small SUVs

Mitsubishi Outlander, 2007–2013

Nissan Rogue, 2008–2013

Midsize SUVs

Ford Taurus X, 2008–2009

Saturn Vue, 2008–2009; built after December 2007

Large SUVs

Saturn Outlook, 2008–2009; built after March 2008

Chevrolet Traverse, 2009 and newer


Kia Sedona, 2006–2014

Hyundai Entourage, 2007–2008


Toyota Tundra extended cab, 2007–2013

The IIHS also advised researching past recalls before purchasing a vehicle.

For more safe vehicles that made the list and their price estimations, visit IIHS’s website.