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Thread: The best sorts of cars for young drivers

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb The best sorts of cars for young drivers

    The world of obtaining car insurance at a reasonable price for 17 year olds is a daunting idea. I think that mandatory advanced driving courses could make other young drivers more aware of the hazards. However, my theory is that the insurance companies and government are doing the wrong thing. By only making it feasible for young drivers to drive hopelessly cheap, small and slow cars, the chances of accidents are higher.
    Consider this. If you give someone a slow car, then all they are going to do is try and make it go faster with hard driving and amateurish mods. This is the attitude that most will have probably :

    "My car only has a tiny engine therefore I can drive as fast and hard as possible and still nothing bad can happen because it's so slow and rubbish. If I do crash severely then it's no problem ; I'll just get another since it only costs a grand or two"

    This promotes irresponsible and dangerous driving. On the other hand, if young drivers were able to drive fast, large and expensive cars then this would be the attitude :

    "I am in control of a nice piece of machinery here, therefore I better be careful because this car has the potential to be dangerous if I over step the mark and my driving ability. If this were to be written off then I wouldn't be able to get another for cheap money, so I better not make any risky or rash decisions. I'll need to drive more conservatively"

    This promotes responsible and safe driving while still providing thrills when safe to do so. I hope you read this, BLASTED insurance companies and use your brains a bit more

  2. #2
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    Mmmm, I dont think so. I live in Mexico and the insurance for a 17 year old is the same as a 40 year old person so you buy what you can afford, and trust me there are a lot more accidents with the more powerful cars among guys my age.

  3. #3
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    Dude, definitely not. im 21 and i dont think i know anyone that would drive slower and more carefully in a bigger, faster, nicer car. That just doesnt make sense to me, nor would it to most people i know. since i got my license ive had 2 suvs (aviator(still have it) and mountaineer(gone)) and ive since moved on to my 350z. I obviously drive the z faster and more aggressively than i do in the aviator and to a greater extent, the mountaineer. but it has nothing to do with the price of the car, its just that the z goes faster and is much more fun to be driven fast. obviously the lincoln wasnt designed for fast driving but my point is that people are going to drive faster in a more expensive, more powerful car. i really wish that insurance was cheaper for people in my demographic, but for financial, rather than safety reasons. i dont think i know anyone my age that would be guilt tripped into driving slower in a more expensive, faster car. im pretty certain it would end up having the opposite effect.
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  4. #4
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    haha i can just imagine what would happen if i had my current car when i was that young. hell i already managed to crash a VN commodore at that age, all 132kw of it
    Andreas Preuninger, Manager of Porsche High Performance Cars: "Grandmas can use paddles. They aren't challenging."

  5. #5
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    Safe, economical, and at least 4 doors for your mates. Basically a typical family car would be good for most young people.
    www.flickr.com/photos/maestro_ng

  6. #6
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    Young drivers should be made to drive the scariest, most unpredictable and downright dangerous cars, so they're forced to drive sensibly or end up very dead.
    Buying a car and not driving it is like buying a meal and not eating it.

    "Oh sh*t, we're going..25!!" - A dear friend of mine.

  7. #7
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    The comaprison of "tiny engine" and "nice machinery" doesn't waork in the OP as it's taken from two different personal perspectives.

    Give the "nice" car to the idiot and he/she will curb it, scratch it, crash it, abuse it.
    Give the "tiny engine" car to an enthusiast and he/she will learn car control, maintenance and an understanding of what type of car they enjoy most and what limits it has and their ability to cope with it at those limits.

    As with motorbikes, I always recommend getting "enough power" to learn but not too much to get into trouble faster than you have the skills to get out of it.
    It's not a marriage, nothing stops us chaning cars every year so 2-3 years after getting a license then a 2nd hand performance car is then somethgin that the owners is skilled enough in to know the limits.

    A good handling, low-ish power car is fine. A Smart roadster coupe manages twisties roads around south of Birmingham faster than a Mazda RX-8 with 3 times the power !
    First hand experience

    First cars shoudl be ones with few vices - be they mechanical, electrical, handling, performance or "image" ( NOBODY shoudl drive a City Rover )

    The UK situation is cr@p as they ASSUME that all young drivers are a high risk because OTHER young drivers crash cars. All "guilty" of bad driving when given a driving license
    Tough

    However, there is a chink in that armour. Kit car clubs negotiate insurance and there the assumption is the owner is an enthusiast and looks after the car, cherishes it and less likely to claim. So get a kit car ( no not a Caterham R500 ) !!
    "A woman without curves is like a road without bends, you might get to your destination quicker but the ride is boring as hell'

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matra et Alpine View Post
    It's not a marriage, nothing stops us changing cars every year so 2-3 years after getting a license then a 2nd hand performance car is then something that the owners is skilled enough in to know the limits.
    Let me just sit and think about a second hand performance woman.....
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matra et Alpine View Post
    Give the "tiny engine" car to an enthusiast and he/she will learn car control, maintenance and an understanding of what type of car they enjoy most and what limits it has and their ability to cope with it at those limits.
    This.

    Learning to drive fast in a slow car makes you a much better driver than learning to drive fast in a fast car. Driving fast a powerful car is easy, just press the right pedal a little bit further. Driving fast a slow car is an art, you learn to keep momentum, changing gear to keep the engine in its sweet spot, etc. Also if you overdo it, and you will, the consequences in a slow car are far less dangerous than in a fast one.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    This.

    Learning to drive fast in a slow car makes you a much better driver than learning to drive fast in a fast car. Driving fast a powerful car is easy, just press the right pedal a little bit further. Driving fast a slow car is an art, you learn to keep momentum, changing gear to keep the engine in its sweet spot, etc. Also if you overdo it, and you will, the consequences in a slow car are far less dangerous than in a fast one.
    my formation years were in a rear engined, rear driven Fiat 850 Coupe, with a whopping 47 BHP. Wow, have I become good.....
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by W.R. View Post
    Young drivers should be made to drive the scariest, most unpredictable and downright dangerous cars, so they're forced to drive sensibly or end up very dead.
    At last, someone who shares my point of view. If only more people of power would see it our way!

  12. #12
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    This.

    Learning to drive fast in a slow car makes you a much better driver than learning to drive fast in a fast car. Driving fast a powerful car is easy, just press the right pedal a little bit further. Driving fast a slow car is an art, you learn to keep momentum, changing gear to keep the engine in its sweet spot, etc. Also if you overdo it, and you will, the consequences in a slow car are far less dangerous than in a fast one.
    Don't think it makes much difference. Every week here in the UK you read about road deaths with slow and small cars. You can't be more dead by crashing a fast car. Besides, bigger cars offer more protection in heavy shunts than smaller ones. The cars are heavier, more space between the driver and the panels, more airbags etc. Big cars are just safer, end of.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by group c n b man View Post
    Don't think it makes much difference. Every week here in the UK you read about road deaths with slow and small cars. You can't be more dead by crashing a fast car. Besides, bigger cars offer more protection in heavy shunts than smaller ones. The cars are heavier, more space between the driver and the panels, more airbags etc. Big cars are just safer, end of.
    But, if you are in twisty country lane going fo it in you 60bhp supermini you may crash at 40mph. In a 200bhp hot hatch you'll be crashing at double that. Also it isn't the same trying to control a slide at 40mph than at 80mph.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  14. #14
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    group c'n'b .... bigger cars do worse on Scottish twisties !
    Small cars can steer and brake out of trouble that big cars plough threw

    More people survive incidents by AVOIDING the crash than those who survive the crash
    "A woman without curves is like a road without bends, you might get to your destination quicker but the ride is boring as hell'

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matra et Alpine View Post
    group c'n'b .... bigger cars do worse on Scottish twisties !
    Small cars can steer and brake out of trouble that big cars plough threw

    More people survive incidents by AVOIDING the crash than those who survive the crash
    Absolutely true. On the twisty roads in the area here I outran big cars often in my 60hp Fiesta. On the straights they blazed past though.

    In my own experience, a small car is best for starters. 9/10 kids feel as proud of the Alto / Corsa / Fiesta / korean shit-box as they do later of their bigger cars. Most will be careful, especially if they paid for it themselves. This went for me anyway..
    The rich kids in the 5-series their mummy bought them crash all the time around here. There used to be this kid that totaled 5 cars in 2 weeks time here, all vehicles in the 3/5-series price range.

    For myself I have always been very careful. I tried to find the limits of all my cars, however on a abandoned parking lot at night. Worst that could happen was hitting a sand wall or a rabbit. IMO this made me a better driver and made the challenge of finding them on the road obsolete.

    I did crash my car though, this week, on a slippery road. Totalled.
    Last edited by drakkie; 10-11-2009 at 02:53 PM.

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