Here’s the reality when it comes to the vehicles our teenagers drive. Too often, budget takes precedence over safety.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting parents don’t care about their children’s safety. Of course they do. Probably more so than their own.
That being said, a recent study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found that more than half of all used cars purchased for teenage drivers were 2006 or earlier model year vehicles.
Also, the study found that two-thirds of teenagers who drove a vehicle already in the household were driving models from 2006 or earlier.
What Changed After 2006?
I know what you’re thinking. “What is it about cars from 2006 and earlier that make them less safe?”
The fact is that vehicles from 2006 and earlier aren’t likely to have safety features like Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Side Airbags – both proven in their ability to help keep drivers and passengers of all ages safe and sound.
Electronic Stability Control (sometimes referred to electronic stability program, stabilitrak or vehicle stability program) is a technology that improves a vehicle’s stability by detecting and reducing loss of traction.
When ESC detects loss of steering control, it automatically applies the brakes to help “steer” the vehicle where the driver intends to go. Braking is automatically applied to wheels individually, such as the outer front wheel to counter oversteer or the inner rear wheel to counter understeer.
A pretty impressive technology and I’m sure if you had the choice, you’d prefer your children were driving a vehicle that came with some form of ESC, right?
Once a feature that was mostly found on European Luxury cars, the technology quickly trickled down to all automakers by the mid-2000’s.
It became such an effective technology in preventing accidents, that in 2008 some form of Electronic Stability Control was mandated to be a standard feature on all vehicles weighing under 10,000 pounds.
Budget AND Safety
As a parent, we should never have to choose between budget and safety. Continue Reading…