STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV)-- Typically smaller cars are less safe, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the group that gives out safety ratings to cars. This leads to parents giving their kids, typically the most inexperienced drivers, some of the least safe cars.
The report shows that a lot of cars teens typically drive are smaller and used. They tend not to have good crash protection and lack a lot of the safety features new cars have.
The IIHS says deciding what to get for a teenager's first car should be more than just a financial decision. But the reality is, for a lot of folks, that's a big part of it.
"Kids are going to drive whatever they can get their hands on. If they have enough money to buy a car, it's going to be an older car, which is less safe. Every year they're putting more, better, safer gadgets on cars," said Patricia Minami, a driver in the Valley.
IIHS has published a list of cars they recommend, and also tips of what to look for in cars. Click on the sidebar of this story for that list.
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