Best Sports Cars for Teens

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Best Sports Cars for Teens

Sports Cars for Teens

There is a reason why teenagers have high car insurance rates. Inexperience and youthful decision-making can be dangerous, even without a sports car.

Still, some teenagers are entrusted with the keys to a sports car. Today, we’ve evaluated some of our favorite options (focusing on comparably affordable models rather than luxury rides) to develop a list of the best sports cars for teens. We’ve been looking for excellent vehicles to satisfy young driving enthusiasts while controlling danger. Please keep reading to see the cars we’ve picked sorted alphabetically.

Sports Cars for Teens

2023 Chevrolet Camaro

The 2023 Chevrolet Camaro is best known for its vast V8 engines, like the 455 horsepower SS and 650 horsepower ZL1. Still, this rear-wheel-drive coupe and convertible has talent beyond its wild power. And that’s good news if you think your teen needs less performance potential.
Under the retro skin of the modern Camaro lie the premium foundations of a Cadillac sports sedan: an unexpectedly stable ride and remarkably balanced handling. We’d also enjoy the base 275-horsepower four-cylinder engine or the additional 335-horsepower V6, especially with the manual transmission. The interior is short on passenger space, but that’s fine for teenagers who don’t need extra distractions from the back seat. Next year could be the teenager’s last chance to own a new Camaro, with Chevrolet planning to end production of the model and possibly borrow its name for a future electric car.

2023 Chevrolet Camaro

Ford Mustang 2023

The 2023 Chevrolet Camaro is best known for its vast V8 engines, like the 455 horsepower SS and 650 horsepower ZL1. Still, this rear-wheel-drive coupe and convertible has talent beyond its wild power. And that’s good news if you think your teen needs less performance potential.

Under the retro skin of the modern Camaro lie the premium foundations of a Cadillac sports sedan: an unexpectedly stable ride and remarkably balanced handling. We’d also enjoy the base 275-horsepower four-cylinder engine or the additional 335-horsepower V6, especially with the manual transmission. The interior is short on passenger space, but that’s fine for teenagers who don’t need extra distractions from the back seat. Next year could be the teenager’s last chance to own a new Camaro, with Chevrolet planning to end production of the model and possibly borrow its name for a future electric car.

Ford Mustang 2023

Ford Mustang 2024

The Ford Mustang is not endangered. Ford’s “pony car” is redesigned for 2024 with styling, interior, technology, and engineering updates.
The overall experience is familiar and has made the Mustang popular for decades. Again, we’d steer the teenager toward the base engine, an already potent 315-hp turbo four. A pony who can dance—its appeal isn’t limited to straight-up shenanigans. We appreciate the standard safety equipment, which includes automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, and lane-keeping assistance.

Ford Mustang 2024

Honda Civic Si 2023

The Honda Civic Si has continually been a sleeper sports car. It is a thinly disguised financial system car with a bigger engine. In recent times, it’s even sleepier than ever, offered best as an anonymous-searching four-door sedan.
Still, the 2023 Civic Si has a 200-horsepower turbo engine and a six-speed manual transmission that sets it apart from regular Civics. The sport-tuned chassis makes driving even more fun than the standard version. Additionally, the Civic earned a Top Safety Pick designation from the Insurance House for Highway Safety and comes with safety features that include automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, and lane keep assist. We’d also happily buy a teenage turbocharged Civic hatchback with “only” 180 horsepower.

Honda Civic Si 2023

2023 Hyundai Elantra N

The Civic Si is a gentle-looking sports sedan with soft handling. Add the power and put back the polished refinement, and you have the 2023 Hyundai Elantra N—this is another economy sedan with a bigger engine but a different size: 276 horsepower.

Sold with a dual-clutch automatic transmission or a conventional manual, the Elantra N has tons of firepower for the money. It also has safety features, including front and rear automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, and rear parking sensors. And it’s another IIHS Top Safety Pick for excellent performance in crash tests.

2023 Hyundai Elantra N

Mazda 3 from 2023

It’s hard to find cars with sleek looks that don’t also have potentially dangerous performance—the 2023 Mazda3 bucks that trend, especially with its five-door hatchback. In the world of SUVs, this low, comprehensive, and humped hatch is elegant and subtly aggressive.
It’s also amusing to force, with peppy engines and responsive steering and dealing with. Even the base engine delivers a respectable 191 horsepower, and the optional turbocharged unit cranks it up to 250. There’s a choice of manual or automatic transmissions (on certain trim levels), while available all-wheel drive improves traction when sprinting from a stop or just trying to get home in slippery weather. And it’s another IIHS Top Safety Pick with a long list of safety features. The Mazda 3 isn’t quite a genuine sports car, but it’s a fun, stylish, and safe ride for teenagers who appreciate a good driving car.

Mazda 3 from 2023

2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Once upon a time, a “sports car” was narrowly defined as a small, open-top, rear-wheel-drive, two-seat roadster. By that metric, the 2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata is the best sports vehicle on our list of nice sports cars for young adults. And by many metrics, it’s also the funniest.
The Miata’s genius is that it feels fast even when it’s not. With the wind blowing overhead, the pavement just below the driver, and the 181 bhp engine whipping the lightweight bodywork, it provides an intimate connection to the road, mainly thanks to its manual gearbox. Some parents may balk at the idea of their teenagers in such a small car, but at least the Miata doesn’t inspire them to chase at absurd speeds if they want a few smiles. They also only fit one passenger. And between its first-rate coping with and widespread computerized emergency braking, lane departure caution, and blind spot tracking, they also stand a first-rate threat of heading off an accident.

2023 Mazda MX-5 Miata

2023 Mini Cooper

Here’s another sports car for teenagers who think they’re small: the 2023 Mini Cooper, a brash British hatchback or convertible that rides on solid BMW bones.
The Mini’s responsive steering and handling are clearly about fun. And when you buy it new, the Mini gives you endless options to customize its look. We’re also happy to see the Mini available with a manual again after a brief switch to an automatic transmission. The base 134-bhp engine is reasonable for teenagers, but some can trust the 189-bhp and 228-bhp models. As with the Miata, the convertible’s intimate connection to the outside helps it sense fast without having immoderate speed. But unlike the Mazda Roadster, which has plenty of room for a backpack but not much more, the Mini has a back seat. And if you fold it down (at least in the hatchback version), you get a functional enclosed area.

2023 Mini Cooper

Subaru WRX year 2023

The 2023 Subaru WRX is another compact sedan with plenty of standard safety features, excellent crash test results, and a big engine—in this case, 271 horsepower.
However, this Honda Civic Si and Hyundai Elantra N rival has a helpful trick: like most Subarus, it comes standard with all-wheel drive. That’s because the WRX has a history as a competition car that races in bumpy conditions rather than on carefully smoothed race tracks. This engineering decision can also help it withstand everyday stress better than most sports cars. And like the Mazda 3, AWD means the WRX has a better chance of maintaining traction in bad weather. Most WRX trim levels also choose manual or automatic transmissions, while Mazda limits the stick shift to front-wheel drive and the base engine.

Subaru WRX year 2023

Toyota GR86 year 2023

Back to small, lightweight rear-wheel-drive two-doors, the 2023 Toyota GR86 is something of a Mazda Miata with a roof. Along with its mechanical dual, the Subaru BRZ, the GR86 favors crisp handling and pure riding delight over top-line pace.
This small sports coupe remembers safety. Like many of the best teen sports cars, the GR86 has a long list of safety features. But it’s also the only car of the 10 to earn the highest possible IIHS Top Safety Pick+ designation. And as with several other cars here, its relatively modest 228 horsepower is safer for many teenagers than a massive engine.

Toyota GR86 year 2023

2023 Volkswagen GTI

We wrap up our list of the ten best sports cars for teens with a classic: the 2023 Volkswagen GTI. This hot hatch has been delighting American drivers for over 40 years, and its international history goes back even further.
The 5-door GTI isn’t a sports automobile. And it has no hair trigger that urges the driver to speed. It’s a comfortable, relaxed, practical car driven gently, with added performance potential when pushed. This stalwart 241-horsepower hatchback is also another IIHS Top Safety Pick. As a final reminder, only some teens can operate a sports car safely, whether it’s the driving skills or the ability to use it safely. But if they’re getting behind the wheel of something beyond sensible transportation, one of these ten sports cars could serve them well.

2023 Volkswagen GTI

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