Gene LaDoucer (701) 282-6222

14 August 2008

The Summer months are the prime time for parents to purchase vehicles for their teens. AAA encourages parents to factor safety, affordability and reliability into picking the best vehicle for their teen.

Selecting the right vehicle can prove challenging for parents as they balance safety concerns, financial constraints, the teen’s preferences and their own emotions.

AAA’s So Your Teen Wants a Car? A Parent’s Guide to Choosing a Vehicle brochure provides parents and teens with important details to consider when in the market for a vehicle. AAA emphasizes three categories for parents to consider during the vehicle selection process: safety, affordability and reliability.

Safety – Automobile crashes are the leading cause of death for teens, and teens are more than twice as likely to be involved in a crash as adult licensed drivers. Parents should consider vehicles with the latest safety features that can reduce the risk of a crash and the likelihood of injury should a crash occur. Such features include antilock braking systems (ABS), daytime running lights, electronic stability control (ESC), airbags and adjustable/lockable head restraints.

Affordability – Parents are encouraged to work with their teen to determine the best investment. A new vehicle may exceed the family budget, so a previously-owned model with good safety features might be the best option. Insurance, fuel and maintenance costs should all factor into the decision making process as well.

Reliability – Selecting a vehicle with a warranty, purchasing an extended warranty, checking the vehicle’s maintenance and crash histories, conducting a pre-purchase inspection and avoiding vehicles with excessive mileage are steps parents can take to ensure the purchase of a roadworthy and mechanically sound vehicle for their teen.

For more information on AAA’s So Your Teen Wants a Car? A Parent’s Guide to Choosing a Vehicle brochure and other AAA teen driver safety resources contact any AAA North Dakota office or call 1-800-342-4254.