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to turn down this free car and offend the giver?

(185 Posts)
tygertygerburningbright Sun 20-Oct-13 18:12:54

I genuinely have no idea if I'm being a spoilt brat about this or not, so I welcome opinions!

I have taken about 20 driving lessons, I'm in my late twenties, and I'm fairly confident I'll pass my test before Christmas. I'm a lone parent and a student so don't have much money. My grandmother is paying for my driving lessons. Today she told me she would give me her car when I pass my test. Which of course is lovely! And I am most grateful for the offer. But... I'll try to list my hesitations..

It's a petrol, and I have learned in a diesel (had a few lessons in a petrol and honestly drove crap because I couldn't really get the hang of the whole needing the gas pedal to do manouvers etc when in a diesel its loads easier because you can just lift the clutch and go.) I know I may very well get used to a petrol in no time, but I am worried about it.

It's teeny tiny, like smaller than a Micra, smaller than any car other than a smart car I think. And I am 6 foot. There will be zero leg room in the back seat behind me. And I am training to work in a trade so I need a fair amount of room for tools etc, which there is none in this car.

It's not very nice... This is the crappiest reason ever not to want it, but basically I hate it and would never choose it in a million years.

All that said, I know it's very very nice of her to offer, and I do think maybe I'm being a bit ungrateful about it. A free car is a free car, and I don't think many people's first car is their dream car really. Also, she would be hugely offended if I said no.

I haven't said anything to my grandmother of course, because I think deep down even I know I'm being horrible...

DontmindifIdo Sun 20-Oct-13 18:30:33

Take the car, you can't afford a dream car with only a grand saved!

It might not be your long term car, but it's a start. Take it, if after say, 12 months it's still hard to drive and you are finding the lack of space an issue, trade it in for something larger, you can explain to her that you needed a bigger car for your tools, but by that point it has been yours long enough for it not be offensive to trade it in.

gordyslovesheep Sun 20-Oct-13 18:32:02

yes I am confused about the petrol thing - yabu op - take the car

candycoatedwaterdrops Sun 20-Oct-13 18:32:11

YABU, you would struggle to get anything decent for a grand.

It's your first car - even with the best will in the world chances are you will bump and scrape it during your first year or two of driving. Take it, run it into the ground, and then by the time it's ready for the scrap heap you will have had loads more experience, a couple of years no claims bonus (hopefully grin) and some money saved for your 'dream car'.

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 20-Oct-13 18:32:33

Any car you get will be different to drive than your instructors car.

Take the car. Its cheap to run, cheap to insure, cheap on repair and cheap on tax. Its not new so you won't mind getting a few dings on it, which are guaranteed in the first 18 months.You won't get a better deal anywhere else.

The only reasons I would turn down something like that if I was in your position would be if there were strings attached to the deal that were likely to strangle me.

LunaticFringe Sun 20-Oct-13 18:32:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

UniS Sun 20-Oct-13 18:33:09

There is not that much difference in driving. I flit between a petrol large hatch back, a petrol tiny car ( an i-10) andf a diesel landrover, and a selection of vans. Once you are a more confident driver its just getting used to the controls and the size of a different car , teh fuel seems pretty unimportant.

I'd be tempted to accept the car, use it and keep on saving for the vehicle of your choice a year or two down the line. By which time you can tell granny that you want to go for a bigger car to make it easier to cart your work stuff about.

ps- if it is an i-10, the boot is lot bigger than it looks. I can fit my folding bike in.

Bosgrove Sun 20-Oct-13 18:33:54

My first car was a fiat cinquecento, the only reason I gave it away 8 years ago was that I couldn't fit a stage 0 car seat in the back. It wasn't my first choice of car but I only had £1k to put down (my parents paid the rest). The first person we offered when we got rid of it, turned it down, didn't want that type of car, we weren't offended, did think beggars can't be choosers, but no skin off our nose. The second person, a 20 something son of a work colleague just loved having a car any car, drove it for years, probably wasn't what he was looking for but he couldn't afford a to buy a car.

My one regret on the car front was that I turned down a car (friend of my Dad's car), because it was old and not what I was looking for - now looking back I can't believe I was so stupid to go just on what it looked like (it was also automatic and I wanted a manual)

RandomMess Sun 20-Oct-13 18:33:56

If you put the rear seats down the boot will be more than big enough for your tool wink DH is 6' 3" and fits in the fiat seicento...

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 20-Oct-13 18:35:03

Its not impossible at all to stall a diesel. My dads is a diesel and we have both stalled it. It has a funny gear ratio which is massively fuel friendly but not so driver friendly.

EndoplasmicReticulum Sun 20-Oct-13 18:35:15

Am I being thick? My husband's car is petrol, mine is diesel, I drive both and have never noticed a difference!

Fakebook Sun 20-Oct-13 18:35:32

Is there really a difference between a petrol and diesel car? confused. I thought the only difference was pushing the accelarator pedal down to start the car. I learnt in a diesel and my petrol car was easier to control.

YABU. Take the car.

gordyslovesheep Sun 20-Oct-13 18:35:35

You so CAN stall a diesel - I stalled mine the other day - again you mean automatic

RandomMess Sun 20-Oct-13 18:35:48

The best thing about small cars is you can nick those tiny parking spaces, I miss little car and it's low insurance and low running costs sad I'd love to get rid of my diesel tank - just need to get rid of at least half the dc first...

trixymalixy Sun 20-Oct-13 18:36:08

Take it if only to get a foothold on the insurance, as it will cost a LOT to begin with.

There's really hardly any difference between driving a petrol and diesel car, that's a very spurious reason to not take it.

Your grandma is being very generous and you should accept it graciously.


RandomMess Sun 20-Oct-13 18:36:52

I'm always stalling my diesel because you have to rev it so much to pull off and I like to be gentle...

Automatics drink fuel compared to manuals too.

LetTheBeatsRoll Sun 20-Oct-13 18:37:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

@LunaticFringe I so wish it was harder to stall a diesel! grin DH has had a diesel estate since May, and it's so flamin delicate we both manage to stall it regularly (and you can't bump start them, can you?)! Probably because it's the newest car we've ever had, and it way more sensitive than our usual rust-buckets!

lougle Sun 20-Oct-13 18:39:36

I can understand the petrol/diesel thing - when I first drove I had a diesel Vauxhall Corsa and I could pull away from a junction in third just by lifting the clutch. It won't take you long to get used to different cars though.

thenightsky Sun 20-Oct-13 18:40:12

Take the car! You'd be mad not to.

Can you tell us what model it is please? I know plenty of people over 6ft who whizz about in tiny Smart Roadsters - one is a 6ft 5in, 23st weight lifting champion!

sapfu Sun 20-Oct-13 18:41:19

Take the car. No difference ime between petrol and diesel.

Be prepared to give Granny a few lifts grin

Fakebook Sun 20-Oct-13 18:42:25

I stalled the diesel car during my test 3 times because I had to give it so much rev. The instructor didnt fail me though because I had an otherwise perfect test.

VeryStressedMum Sun 20-Oct-13 18:43:23

Ive driven both petrol and diesel and i have no idea what you mean about just lifting the clutch and go in a diesel??

HDEE Sun 20-Oct-13 18:43:38

I swap regularly between our large, diesel people carrier and small, petrol run-around and don't notice any difference due the the fuel they use. No two cars feel the same to drive and im surprised that with your 20 lessons experience that you can tell the difference.

Wish I had a granny like yours, you are very lucky.

WMittens Sun 20-Oct-13 18:48:03


Is there really a difference between a petrol and diesel car?

Not in normal everyday driving.

I thought the only difference was pushing the accelarator pedal down to start the car.

There shouldn't be a need to do that anyway. Some cars distinctly dislike you pressing the accelerator when trying to start them (Subaru Impreza for one). Some cars require you to press the clutch when starting.

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