Shopping for a Vehicle

When it’s time to shop for a vehicle, you’ll want to look at more than the color of the car and the size of the engine. Here are some useful tips to help you make a decision you can live with.

Safety

  • Check safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
  • Choose a newer mid-size sedan with the following safety features.
    • Antilock braking system (ABS)
    • Daytime running lights
    • Electronic stability control
    • Side airbags
    • Adjustable/lockable head restraints
  • Look for a vehicle similar in weight, power and size to what you use for practice driving — or plan extra practice hours with the new vehicle.

Reliability

  • Look for a warranty.
  • Check the vehicle history and maintenance records.
  • Conduct a pre-purchase inspection.
  • Avoid vehicles with excessive mileage.

Affordability

  • Research insurance costs.
  • Don’t pay more than you can afford.
  • Weigh pros and cons of older vehicles.
  • Consider a certified used car.
  • Factor in gas mileage.