Birthdays and holidays are great when you’re a kid, aren’t they? Relatives who don’t know what to get for you go for the easy way out – they give you cash. Unsolicited cash is the best kind!

While it is certainly tempting to rush out and buy the latest video game or trendiest new jeans, there is something better you can do with that cash: save it to purchase a car.

Getting your driver’s license is a long-awaited milestone for any teenager. Once you have your license you can go out more since you don’t have to rely on family to take you where you want to go.

However that new-found freedom is seriously crippled when you don’t have your own car. How lame is it to have to ride the bus because you can only borrow your parents car when they don’t need it? Plus, do you really want to be seen in your mom’s soccer mom van?

Well, if you start saving early this does not have to be a problem. A new car doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Take the Subaru Outback for example. Starting around $25,000, this vehicle has it all for a new driver. With the roomy yet chic design, you can fit plenty of friends into this baby. Plus the extra cargo space will be perfect for that move out of your parents’ house. You will likely not keep those trendy jeans or video game for more than a year, but this investment could easily last for the next decade!

Buying a car isn’t only about the sticker price, You must also consider maintenance costs, fuel economy and insurance cost. Gas prices are not too outrageous right now, but there is no way to know for sure when that will change. Maintenance costs are something to research before making any car purchase. Most luxury vehicles not only have a higher purchase price, they also come with a hefty maintenance cost. Again, 2017 subaru outback is a winner here, costing thousands less per year to maintain than a Kia Sedona or Nissan Quest.

Higher-end vehicles will cost more to insure as well since they are more likely to be targets of theft. What’s the point of saving up to buy your own vehicle just to have to work like a dog to pay the insure it? Here your best bet is to go for a non-luxury, less sporty vehicle.

The cooler the car, the more attention it draws. Having a cool car is great, but thieves think so too. Since luxury and sporty cars are more likely to be stolen, or driven in a less-than-responsible manner, they are more expensive to insure. Thus, some of that new car freedom is going to be eaten up by working more hours to pay the bills.

Yes, the boots in that store window you just walked past are super cute. And that new gaming system would be awesome to have in your room. But, in the long-run, isn’t the freedom to be able to go out in your very own car better than trendy fashion or electronics? To have a better idea please look at the list of the new cars 2017