The Best Used Cars to Buy If You Just Got Your License

If you are a new driver, congratulations on getting your license. Now, you need to think about what type of vehicle to buy. Ideally, you’ll choose a used car that isn’t overly expensive, and is reliable and safe while still being fun to drive.

With the new driver in mind, we have evaluated several used vehicles, and our choices are the Honda Fit, Mazda3, Toyota Tacoma, Hyundai Elantra Coupe, and Subaru Forester.

  • Honda Fit: Honda has long been known for small cars that are reliable, economical and still fun to drive. The Fit is remarkably roomy for a micro, and with the rear folding seats, you can actually carry quite a bit of cargo. If you’re moving to a college dorm, this is a great feature.

  • Mazda3: The Mazda3 is safe, reliable and affordable. It performs well in crash tests, and delivers significant fuel economy. The interior is very stylish, so if you like the look of a more expensive vehicle, but you’re on a budget, a used Mazda3 could be the perfect choice.

  • Toyota Tacoma: If you prefer a truck, but don’t want something quite as big as a Tundra or an F-150, the Tacoma is a great choice for a new driver. It’s not so big as to feel overwhelming, and you can park it easily. The Tacoma also shares the Toyota reputation for reliability.

  • Hyundai Elantra Coupe: You may as well enjoy an impractical car while you can, before you end up with kids and responsibilities. This stylish car is well-built and comfortable, and serves the main purpose of a coupe, which is basically to look good. You’ll like it.

  • Subaru Forester: Every Subaru, with the exception of the BRZ, features all-wheel drive. This little SUV goes pretty much anywhere you want to go, handles well in bad weather, and drives more like a car than an SUV, which makes it ideal for new drivers.

Every new driver is a bit different. Whether you prefer a zippy (but not too zippy - remember, you’re a new driver) little car, an attractive coupe, or a sturdy truck you’ll find the right vehicle for you on this list.


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Attila

19 years of experience
906 reviews
Attila
19 years of experience
Cadillac SRX V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Edison, New Jersey
Attila was great! Very knowledgeable and actually detected a fault during a pre-purchase inspection that would have cost me later.
Lexus ES350 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Fords, New Jersey
He is very good—offered all the significant details we needed from the inspection. Helped us figure out what needed to be fixed.

Shawn

12 years of experience
285 reviews
Shawn
12 years of experience
Chevrolet Impala V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Lansdale, Pennsylvania
Shawn was prompt, professional, and delivered the promised service as expected. This was a used vehicle pre-purchase inspection. Shawn also had to drive to multiple locations to perform the inspection, as the address listed that I provided him with was not accurate, but he still made it to the correct location within his time window and completed the inspection.
Toyota Sequoia - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Akron, Pennsylvania
Shawn was very prompt in communicating with me and was good at helping me decide whether to purchase a used car. He help me avoid a car with a repaired rusted frame that could be a danger to my family's safety since we were planning on using the car to tow a travel trailer!

Luis

18 years of experience
320 reviews
Luis
18 years of experience
Honda HR-V L4-1.8L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Warren, New Jersey
Luis was great. He showed up on time, acted professionally, and gave me confidence with a pre-purchase car inspection.
Acura RDX - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - South Hackensack, New Jersey
Luis did a thorough pre-purchase inspection for me, and found several major issues that made me pass on buying the car. Had I purchased the car, I almost certainly would have ended up paying thousands in repairs down the road. Thanks Luis!

Robert

20 years of experience
1089 reviews
Robert
20 years of experience
Hyundai Elantra L4-2.0L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Englewood, Colorado
He did a pre-purchase inspection for me. He was knowledgeable and fast, and knew what he was looking for. I really appreciate all the pictures and documentation he took of the state of the car before purchase. He noted potential issues with the car that I wouldn't have been able to notice. Would recommend.
GMC Savana 1500 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Golden, Colorado
I trust Robert. He gave me a list and we will take care of it the week of June 29. I will know then that my vehicle is ready for the winter and is safe to drive. I look forward to getting things ready for another winter of careful driving.

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