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The First Car List: A List Of Affordable, Safe Cars For Young Drivers

22 JUNE, 2010

MEDIA RELEASE: 22 June 2010

A list of the safest and most affordable cars for young drivers was released today by the Brumby Labor Government to help guide the purchase of safer first vehicles.

Roads and Ports Minister Tim Pallas launched the First Car List at Melbourne High School today with Member for Prahran Tony Lupton and said it would provide new drivers with a new resource when buying their first car.

“We understand Victorians are concerned about safety on our roads, which is why the Brumby Labor Government is taking action to improve community safety and drive down the road toll,” Mr Pallas said.

“Young people make up just 13 per cent of drivers, but they account for around 25 per cent of all driver fatalities. Among other factors, poorly informed vehicle choice accounts for a large percentage of the risk confronting young people on our roads.

“The First Car List provides new drivers and their parents with the safety information required to make an informed decision when purchasing their first vehicle.

“This list demonstrates that you do not have to spend a lot of money to make sure your first car is safe, with all the vehicles listed being under $15,000.”

A study by the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) revealed over 60 per cent of incidents where young drivers were killed or seriously injured could have been prevented had they been in a safer car of the same age as the one they were driving.

“This is a very strong incentive for young drivers and their parents to refer to the First Car List to provide greater safety on the road,” Mr Pallas said.

“It’s important all drivers have the best safety advantages when they set out on the road, and safe driving practices will be boosted by driving a safer vehicle.”

The First Car List, developed by VicRoads with support from the TAC and RACV, is part of the Brumby Labor Government’s arrive alive road safety strategy, which aims to reduce road deaths and serious injuries by 30 per cent by 2017.

Mr Lupton said the Government was committed to improving safety on the road for new drivers and choosing the right vehicle would give young people a head start.

“My advice to all drivers, but especially young people, is to check out the safe cars list to ensure you have the best possible start before taking to the road,” Mr Lupton said.

The First Car List is based on the Used Car Safety Ratings, which rank cars using a five star rating system, according to its ability to protect drivers and passengers in a crash. Developed by MUARC, the ratings are based on analysis of over three million crashes on Australian roads.

The five safest cars in the small, medium and large car range include –

Small: Ford Focus LS/LT 2005-07; Volkswagen Golf 2004-07; Ford Focus LR 2002-05; Holden Astra TR 1996-98; and Mazda 3 2003-07.

Medium: BMW 5 Series 1996-2003; Mazda 6 2002-07; Honda Accord 1999-2002; Peugeot 406 1996-2004; and Saab 9000 1986-97.

Large: Holden Statesman 1999-2003; Holden Caprice WK 1999-2003; Mitsubishi Magna TL-TW 2003-05; Mitsubishi Verada KL-KW 2003-05; and Ford Fairlane 1999-2002.

UPDATE: The first car list is no longer available. Check out this website to search for a safe car in your budget.

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