I can drive cars

Discussion in 'Català (Catalan)' started by lfc1990, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. lfc1990 New Member

    Hello guys,

    I've just started learning Catalan and need some advanced/native speakers to help me out (I've no one to practice with!). So these are the basic sentences/questions I want to say/ask and they all based on the same thing (having the ability to drive - i.e. a car):

    1. I can drive cars (a car)
    2. Can you drive cars (a car)?

    My translations:

    1. Puc conduir cotxes (un cotxe).
    2. Pots conduir cotxes? (un cotxe)

    I'm just wondering if these sentences are ok (make sense) even though they're very basic. Any alternative ways to say them would also be greatly appreciated.

    moltes gràcies!
  2. Lurrezko

    Lurrezko Senior Member

    Junto al mar
    Spanish (Spain) / Catalan
    Welcome to the Catalan forums, lfc1990.:)

    In Catalan, as in Spanish, we use saber (know) instead of poder (can) to convey the meaning of having the ability to do something:

    Sé conduir (cotxes).
    Saps conduir (cotxes)?

    Usually sé conduir/saps conduir implies that you are referring to cars, so it sounds more natural to my ears if you omit that part.

  3. Ssola Senior Member

    Català - Barcelona
    Your translations are grammatically correct, :thumbsup:. However, the verb "poder" ([jo] "puc", [tu] "pots") means 'to be able' or 'to be available'. "Having the ability to drive" should be said with the verb "saber" ([jo] "sé", [tu] "saps"), which means 'to know' or 'to know how to'.

    1. Sé conduir cotxes.
    2. Saps conduir cotxes?

    We usually say:

    1. Sé conduir.
    2. Saps conduir? / Que saps conduir?

    And it is understood it is refered to cars.
  4. Angelo di fuoco Senior Member

    Russian & German (GER) bilingual
    Just to give an example: Sé conduir, però ara no puc: m'he trencat un braç. I can drive (have learned it), but I cannot do it just now because I broke an arm.
  5. germanbz Senior Member

    Benicàssim - Castelló - Spain
    Spanish-Spain/Catalan (Val)
    If you translate literally "to can drive" in "poder conduir" the meaning is not the same in Catalan that in English. In Catalan "poder conduir" means that you have driving licence. I mean, you can say:
    (Jo) Puc conduir camions de fins a 15m.

    But this sentence doesn't mean that you have the skill of being able but you are legally allowed.

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