If you are a tall person, you are aware of all the different compromises you have to do throughout life. Even though they sometimes might be small and insignificant like not being able to sit comfortably in public transportation, or not being able to stretch out on a long flight.
Others might be more significant, like not being able to buy a properly sized bed, or not being able to buy certain car models. While most modern cars are able of fitting even the tallest individuals, some simply can not.
You ought to look for an SUV, a pickup, or a sedan, or even a minivan. Cars like the Toyota Prius, VW Golf, or the Ford F-150 are the most popular cars on the planet, and they can comfortably fit most tall people.
Buying a great used car for tall drivers is more or less the same as buying a car in normal circumstances, but it’s always a good idea to test drive the car in advance.
Best used sedans for tall drivers
You should probably opt for a mid-sized or a full-sized sedan, but numerous compact sedans are also more than spacious for tall people. A great used car for taller drivers is the Hyundai Sonata, it is fairly affordable, fairly well-equipped with 40.4 inches of headroom, and 45.5 inches of legroom.
Other great used sedan options for taller drivers are the Subaru Legacy or the Nissan Altima. Both of them offer 40 inches of headroom and 43 inches of legroom for the Subaru, or 45 inches for the Altima. These two are also fairly affordable, and common, spare parts are easy to come by, and they are cheap to run.
If you want a more luxurious option, a BMW 3-series GT is a great option for taller drivers because it offers 41.3 inches of headroom and 42 inches of legroom. A used, previous-generation S-Class is a behemoth, and it also offers 42.1 inches of headroom and 41.4 inches of legroom as well.
If you want an EV, a Tesla Model S offers a generous 42.7 inches of legroom, but the headroom is around 39 inches, which might pose a problem for the tallest individuals. You should probably test these out to figure out which one fits you perfectly, but the dimensions are surely adequate.
Best used SUVs for tall people
Let’s face it, an SUV is probably the type of car you are searching for. Even though sedans do offer more than enough space, they are fairly low, and this means that they are not all that easy to get in and out of. A mid to full-size SUV ticks all those boxes, plus, you will feel superior to the rest, just like you do on foot.
If you want a posh SUV, an Audi Q7 is a great option. It is a tad bit more expensive than your regular Japanese-made SUV, but it does ample luxury and comfort features. The Q7 offers 40 inches of headroom and almost 42 inches of legroom, and the boxy shape certainly makes it easy to get comfortable.
If you want more ‘’regular’’ SUVs, the GMC Yukon/Chevy Tahoe/Chevrolet Suburban offers 42.8 inches of headroom and around 45.3 inches of legroom. A Ford Expedition also offers ample space at 42 inches of headroom, and 43.9 of legroom.
Almost all SUVs offer enough space interior and cargo-wise, only if you opt for a sub-compact or a compact SUV you might have an issue fitting 4 larger adults.
Worst cars for tall drivers
As mentioned previously, almost all cars are spacious enough for most people. But there are a few options you should most definitely avoid if you are tall. Cars like the Mazda MX-5 Miata or the Toyota Supra are way too small for taller individuals, and if you plan on transporting multiple passengers, it’s almost impossible.
A Porsche Boxster is also way too small, the same goes for the Toyota Tacoma or the Chevy Bolt. A Hyundai Veloster is also fairly compact, the BMW Z4 or the Mercedes SLC/SLK. Even though you might be able to fit in these cars all by yourself, they certainly will not be comfy.
Pretty much every Lamborghini is not an option. The new Corvette offers way too little legroom, the Toyota Yaris is too small in every aspect, and the Lotus Exige is probably the single worst used car option for tall people.
What is the best type of car for a tall person?
To narrow the search down, you should probably avoid all hatchbacks. Even though they might be able to fit a larger individual, it will render the rear seats useless. The same goes for compact sports cars like the MX-5 or the Porsche Boxster.
You ought to look for an SUV or a sedan, a minivan will also do, but let’s face it, no one wants a minivan. Station wagons offer plenty of cargo room, but the interior space is more or less the same as in a sedan. A crossover could also be a valid option, but you should test drive it just to make sure.
What is different about cars made for tall people?
Well, the main deciding factor is the driver’s interior space. You should look for at least 40’’ inches of legroom or 38’’ of headroom, but these can vary depending on your height. It’s also important for you to be comfortable, and a safe distance away from the airbags.
You also need to consider safety, and choosing a larger vehicle, in general, provides more space between you and the rest of the car, and this might be a huge differentiating factor in an unfortunate event.
Why won’t car companies make cars specifically designed for taller people?
If you lower the product margin, the volume becomes a key to success. It just would not be profitable enough. Compact cars are made not with small people in mind, but rather to be more maneuverable and easier to live with within city centers.
But there is no need for tall people-specific cars because most modern car brands offer cars that are indeed large enough for 98% of people. It’s the same story for smaller people, you just have to adjust the steering wheel and seat position, and you are likely to be comfortable.