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Best Vehicles for Taller Larger Drivers

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  • Well, my search for a tall person vehicle has been ongoing for years. I keep looking and still drive my 2000 ford f-150 until we find something else. The worst, as a group, are vehicles with sunroofs- no headroom. Also, the mid-size cars seem to be worse than smaller cars.

    You would think that pickup trucks would be the best-think again. Some trucks are good- the ford f-150 being one, and the fords older than 2003 are best. Some trucks have enough headroom but the windshield is too short, or the roof slopes down too far. Examples : NissanTitan, Toyota Tundra after 2007, Chev Silverado. I can't see stop signs from these vehicles.

    In suv's the Subaru Forester has OK headroom but the seats are terrible. The Honda CRV in models without sunroof have decent headroom and good windshield visibility. I would have bought one if they still came equipped with a manual 5 speed. The Honda Pilot has enough headroom in models without sunroof, but I didn't find the seats to be very good- the lumbar is too low for a tall guy.

    In cars, it's hard to beat the headroom in the Volkswagen new Beetle. Otherwise, I haven't found a passenger car I can sit in- either as a passenger or a driver......cheers, 2Grumpy.
  • hey you should look into the mini cooper as long as u dont push it to the max it is fun to drive handles nice an is roomy. You have 3 more inches on me but i test drove one an am now looking into buying one also the kia soul is a comfy car for us taller guys. I hope this helps u out. peace
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,950
    A reporter would like to interview anyone who has used Edmunds.com's Car Match.

    Please email pr@edmunds.com by November 4, 2011 with your daytime phone number and a comment about your experience.
  • I'm 6'7", 300lbs and recently traded in my 2008 Toyota Camry Hybrid (which was surpisingly comfortable but tough getting in and out of) for a 2012 Chevy Equinox 2LT. I absolutely love this car. It has a moonroof and I still have plenty of headroom, enough to do the fist test and pass. The rear seat slides back and reclines to give passengers more leg room if you typically have the drivers seat pushed all the way back. I have tons of leg room with the seat all the way back, but I can comfortably move it forward a few inches if I had to. Even with my seat all the way back, I had a 6'1" adult sitting behind me with no issues.

    Very comfortable leather seat with lumbar and heat, nav system is terrific and the dash lights up in an Ice Blue color that looks fantastic at night. Throw in the power liftgate and backup camera and I was sold! I was between this and the 2011 Subaru Outback, but this had more legroom and was more comfortable overall. I'm averaging 26mpg so far, which isn't bad for an AWD vehicle. My right knee doesn't rest against the center console like in my Toyota, there is plenty of room. Overall I couldn't be happier and I get tons of compliments. Great option for a tall person that has decent fuel economy, all wheel drive and lots of room, even with the moonroof!! :shades:
  • After my previous post, We went back and tried another Honda Pilot. We ended up buying one, an EX, ( no sunroof ) and all I had to do to get comfortable is put a pad behind my back to make the bulge from the lumbar support hit me a bit higher. The rest of the vehicle is so good, that this is a small inconvenience. We are enjoying the utility of the Pilot, and no headroom problems at all. By the way, it is a better driver than most people would guess.....2Grumpy.
  • Well, I am 6'6" and 270 lbs. Long torso so headroom is premium. Best car I ever had for fit was my 2006 BMW 330I but too expensive to own.

    I traded the BMW in for a 2011 Kia Optima. This is a GREAT car for the $'s. VERY roomy both leg room and head room and still room in the back seat. Only drawback is that the seats aren't terrific for thigh support (a little short). But all in all, for the $'s, you should really check it out.

    Oh, and a 200 hp 4 cyl that gets 35 mpg on the highway. Mine was $23K out the door, brand new.
  • Tall guys: get the seat track moved back. Cost me $200 for a Nissan Rogue, and I got five extra inches. My Dad did the same, at the same company in the mid-80's for his car.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,950
    What kind of shop did it? Auto body or dealer or indy mechanic?

    Was there any discussion about liability concerns? Did you happen to ask your insurance company if there was any problem with moving the seat track?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 16,895
    Problem with just moving it back is that it puts you further from the steering wheel. As it is, I find wheels don't telescope enough for my comfort. I bring the seat forward to where I'm compromising a bit of leg comfort so I don't have to have my arms stretched out to full extension (which is a detriment to car control).

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '08 Town&Country

  • it would be helpful to have a website where all the vehicles are listed and an option to sort the list by one or more key fields.

    1) Driver head room
    2) Driver leg room
    3) Average MPG
    4) Standard Warranty length
    5) Price

    It is a real pain sorting through all the MFG hype just to find a few key elements.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,950
    Hm, you can go the Car Finder tool here and sort by body style, price and mpg. The take four choices and compare them. Once you do that you look at the warranty and the head leg room measurements.

    It's a start even though you can't first sort by head room.
  • chris_s_2010chris_s_2010 Posts: 2
    edited February 2012
    I am 6'4" and my son is 6'6". I needed a "new" used car that would work for both of us and have adequate leg and headroom in both the front and back seats. I wanted a sedan that was relatively new and had decent fuel economy. In the end, I bought a 2010 Camry Hybrid and I am very happy with it.

    One Saturday morning, I took my son with me and we did a tour of the local car dealers trying out all of the sedans we could find. This included Camry, Accord, Hyundai, Kia and Ford Fusion. I liked the Hyundai Sonata and that was my first choice based on looks. According to the specs on paper, it has the best front legroom (45.5"), good front headroom (40"), average rear headroom but relatively poor rear legroom. The front seat does have good leg and head room. If you don't use the back seat much (at least for tall people), then this would be a pretty good choice for a tall driver. With the sloping roof line, the back seat would not be comfortable for six-footers. The only model choice is the GL because all of the rest have a sunroof and that makes the front headroom inadequate. The GL does not come with an electric driver's seat (it may be an option if you buy it new). It does have an adjustable steering wheel. I still liked the car but it felt a bit cramped overall, even sitting in the front seat.

    We tried the Kia (same basic car as the Hyundai), the Accord (they didn't have one in stock without a sunroof) and the Fusion (felt cramped - especially in the back). I already have an older Camry and I really like it (even though front legroom is limited). A newer Camry wasn't at the top of my list because the interior dimensions on paper just seemed average, Toyota has been having some reliability issues and the styling was pretty conservative. Once we sat in it, there was no turning back. Initially we tried a 2012 and it is a bit larger than the older models but not by much. The front leg and headroom was very good and with the electric driver's seat (and adjustable steering wheel), it made it even better. With a squarer roof line than the Sonata (and most other sedans), the back seat was also very good for leg and head room. We started looking for used Camry's and I found a 2010 Hybrid that we liked so we bought it. We just finished a vacation trip to Florida in it and we found it to be very comfortable and at 40+ mpg, very efficient as well. Luggage room in the trunk is a bit limited because of the battery pack but the car fit three adults and our luggage quite adequately. For local use, it can comfortably fit 4 or even 5 adults with adequate headroom for six-footers in front and back.

    In conclusion, I recommend the Camry, and especially the Hybrid for its interior room as well as its efficiency. I did quite a bit of research on the Camry Hybrid and found that it has an excellent reliability record. The Toyota engineers seem to have done a really good job on this car. Unlike the Prius, the Camry Hybrid feels pretty much like a normal car. It has a lot of technology in it but this hasn't lead to lots of failures or expensive replacement of parts. With 2 engines and dual braking systems, many key parts aren't under as much stress as they would be in a normal gas engine car. The battery pack was designed to last for the life of the car and so far, that seems to be the case. I also learned that you have to try them out to get a real feel for the interior room. I still don't understand how the Sonata and the Camry can both be rated as having the same rear headroom (37.8") when they are, in fact, so different. There are quite a few Camry Hybrids so it isn't too hard to find a used one at a fairly reasonable price. I ended up paying about the same as I was expecting to pay for a used 2011 (non-hybrid) Sonata.
  • I am 6'7" approx 450ish. I currently drive a 2006 Dodge Ram Quad Cab which is far and away the most roomiest vehicle I have ever driven. I just bought a 2012 Kia Soul for my daughter who is 5'8" and took the opportunity to "try on" Kia's SUV line. Given that I am evenly split (long legs long torso) nothing was really comfortable as a daily driver. I have several friends who bring by their trucks to see how I fit the Ford Series is hard on head room but ok on leg room. I test drove a 2011 Chevrolet Avalanche and was completely impressed.

    I am in the market for a mid-sized SUV to replace my truck. The cost of fuel is KILLING me at 14 miles per gallon. I am going to try Honda, GMC and Hyundai. I am hoping to stay 27k or less. Due to injuries sustained while I was military, cars are just too painful to get in and out of...that being said, my ex did get me to try her 2011 Yaris and she got a great laugh, it just was not designed for a guy with a 60" chest.
  • So...after alot of research I finally went and purchased a 2012 GMC Terrain (SLE2). At 6'7" and girthy..."trying on" the car is always mandatory. It makes the shorter sales people celebrate that they are not taller and can be quite a laugh. I first went and tried the 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe. It was a little short on head and legroom, though trying a model with power seats gave me about an inch to spare, but my knees were about 1/2" from the dash. I just could not imagine a long drive without road rage. I went next to GMC and tried the terrain. It has about 2 1/2" more leg room than my Full-Sized Dodge Ram 1500 (quad cab) and about equal headroom. The hip room is snug but comfortable (God, I need to lose weight) and the shoulders had suprising room. I was going to try the equinox, but found out it is 3" more narrow than the terrain. While I was there, I sat in their full sized GMC SUV and OMG...what room!!!. But I was determined not to pay almost $40k for my new car plus the economy would ave left me only a little better than staying in my truck.

    What fits in a car is very different depending on your build, I am cursed with a long body and a 36" inseam and a 60" chest. I wish car dealers would tailor advertising a little toward our market. I found the Terrain easy to get in and out of with a tilt/telescoping wheel. It sits high enough to not be hard on my knees but low enough that I am not climbing into it. It uses E85 fuel so I am anticipating an almost $200 a month drop in fuel costs by moving from my Dodge to this. At a $29k sticker price for the SLE2 package with power/heater seats and AWD It was an easy sell.
  • Hello bigguy72712 - I found the exact same thing that you did with the GMC Terrain!! I am 6'7" with a 37" inseam and virtually gave up on finding an SUV with decent leg room and head room. It was by accident (literally) that I found the GMC Terrain. Our car was hit while at a stop light and we got the Terrain as a rental vehicle - I could not believe how much leg room there is once the seat is all the way back and tilted! I can almost stretch my 37" inseam legs all the way out (seat back AND tilted back), and with the telescoping steering wheel, I can just reach the wheel. More room than any car (although the new Buick Regal has almost as much, but less shoulder room). Also, the back seat slides forward/aft so with the back seat all the way back, there's a little room behind me (the driver) as well.

    For all you tall folks out there, please try the GMC Terrain (or the sister vehicle the Chevrolet Equinox - 2010 on) if you need leg and head room, you will be pleasantly surprised.
    Thank you GM for puting some leg room in your vehicles - if you put the seat back further, you can always slide the seat up if your short, but you can never slide it back...
  • I am 6'5, over 300, 34" inseam, 56" chest. The point isn't only what car is comfortable once you are in it, but getting in and out. I normally drive a 2009 Suburban (which I hate as it's slow, pondering handling and not that much room for how big it is) and it had to go in the body shop for 4 days, during which time I got a rental. I tried a Chrysler 200. I couldn't even get in the car. A Chevy Impala was better, but the door opening was not long enough and swinging my legs in was a biotch. I settled on a Hyundai Sonata as I could get out of it better than the other two, but it was not a breeze.

    It seems to me that newer cars have both lower roof lines and even lower openings, probably for more structural rigidity to hold up better in a crash. The thing is, it makes ingress and egress a pain, no matter what the ergos are once you get in and out of a car.

    My handicap is that I had my neck fused on three levels in January. I really don't want to have to get a truck as they are slow, handle poorly and get bad gas mileage. Oh well. I really wanted that SS Camaro, but it won't work. :/.
  • 2grumpy2grumpy Posts: 3
    The Ford Transit small van has 51 inches of headroom. Now there's a vehicle for tall people. The tall vehicle height and small engine will likely keep this van off the highway, but as a city vehicle, I don't think you can find anything else with more headroom.
  • A van? Shoot me now.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,950
    edited March 2012
    I see a few on the highway but not many. I like the looks. Not your typical minivan by any means. Just wish it had a 5 speed MT.

    image
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    The one at our local car show in 2010 did have a manual transmission.. they don't offer them, now?

    I mostly see them outfitted as light delivery vehicles... for florists, etc...

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

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