Picking the right car for you and your family can be difficult. Not all vehicles are family-friendly, and some that are may not be the most reliable or affordable. This is especially important if your family has recently expanded.

The good news is you don’t need to buy the latest models to get a safe car that accommodates everyone in the family. Even better, all vehicles manufactured after September 1, 2002 have been required to have a LATCH system to make fastening car seats easier.

Understanding LATCH Car Safety Ratings

Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) is a specific hardware used to keep car seats firmly attached in a vehicle. The majority of cars must have at least two rear seats with full LATCH hardware and a third with at least a tether anchor. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has a LATCH rating program that helps determine which vehicles have the easiest systems to use. LATCH systems are given ratings of Good, Acceptable, Marginal, or Poor.

LATCH ratings don’t indicate that the system is faulty – the ratings measure how easy it is to use with a front-facing car seat. For all 2015 models they tested, only three were Good, while 44 were Acceptable, 45 were Marginal, and 10 rated as Poor. So, keep in mind that if a vehicle has a Poor LATCH rating it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s an unsafe car for you and your family.

Best Used Cars Under $15,000 for Families

  • 2015 Volkswagen Passat2015 Volkswagen Passat

    Average Price: $11,540

    LATCH Rating: Good

    Fuel Economy: 24/35/28 miles per gallon (city/highway/combined)

    IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2015

  • 2015 Chevrolet Cruze2015 Chevrolet Cruze

    Average Price: $11,709

    LATCH Rating: Acceptable

    Fuel Economy: 22/34/26 mpg (city/highway/combined)

  • 2015 Hyundai Elantra2015 Hyundai Elantra

    Average Price: $12,155

    LATCH Rating: Marginal

    Fuel Economy: 27/37/31 mpg (city/highway/combined)

    IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2015

  • 2015 Toyota Corolla2015 Toyota Corolla

    Average Price: $13,074

    LATCH Rating: Marginal

    Fuel Economy: 27/35/30 mpg (city/highway/combined)

  • 2015 Honda Civic2015 Honda Civic

    Average Price: $13,414

    LATCH Rating: Acceptable

    Fuel Economy: 29/37/33 mpg (city/highway/combined)

    IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2015

Ready to Buy a Car for the Family?

Safety is one of the most important things to look for in a car, especially if you have a family with small children. While the LATCH system isn’t the most important safety system you need to pay attention to, it’s helpful if you need a vehicle with an easy-to-use car seat system.

If you’re in the market for a vehicle because your family grew, or are simply looking for a more reliable car, let Auto Credit Express help out. We work with an extensive network of special finance dealers that can help you get the lending you’ve been looking for. Simply fill out our auto loan request form to get the process started today!