Best Cars for Tall People 120

If you’re searching for the best cars for tall people, you’ve come to the right place. This page covers the fundamentals of what makes a car tall friendly, from legroom and headroom to traffic light visibility and ease of getting in and out. All of this is important for both comfort and safety. There are also sections on car seat modifications and general tips for tall people. Lastly, you’ll be left with a view of how the car industry may affect tall people in the future. I put this page together to help my fellow tall drivers on this challenging quest.

Fresnel Lens to See Traffic Lights

Recent Cars for Tall People Posts


Why Car Manufacturers Neglect Tall People

As with other manufactured objects, economy of scale encourages manufacturers to cater to average height and neglect outliers. There are regulations that help. But these tend to be inadequate for tall people. For example, common regulations merely require accommodation of the fifth percentile female through to the ninety-fifth percentile male,1 neglecting five percent of the population. In actuality, this percentage is higher due to varying body proportions.

Cars for Tall People-Convertable

Flawed Car Seat Adjustments for Tall Drivers

When it comes to chairs, tall people are better suited by taller chairs. This is common sense. But when adjusting car seats, a tall driver is more likely to lower their seat. We do this to get more headroom, but this causes our knees to be higher relative to our hips, which is uncomfortable for our hips and backs. In other words, it’s a flawed seat adjustment for tall people.

Another flawed adjustment is seat slide. Humans have longer legs than arms, so if the seat is moved far enough back for a taller person’s legs, it will have been moved too far for their arms. Hence tall people, as odd as this may seem, will find themselves reaching for the steering wheel. This is worsened by the fact that we like to recline our seats to get more headroom. The result is that we end up slouching in the upper back.

Telescoping pedals and steering wheel columns can help with these issues, but the range of adjustment may be inadequate. This may be true for other adjustments too, like seat belt shoulder height and lumbar supports. In addition to diminishing comfort, these issues also increase our risk of injury.

The Hazards of Tiny Cars for Tall Drivers

When most people picture a tall driver in a tiny car, they find it hilarious. It reminds them of clown cars in circus acts. And I’ll admit, it is a tad funny. But I also know that too small of cars for tall people can be a major health hazard, and the literature backs me up on this.

Car too Small for Tall Driver

A lack of legroom can affect reaction time for hitting the brakes,2 increasing the likelihood of an accident. And if an accident does occur, more serious injuries are likely to result; airbags, low head rests, and insufficient legroom have all been implicated in more serious injuries experienced by tall people in a car crash.3-5 Even outside the car our safety is relatively diminished; bumpers are designed to cause minimum damage when striking average length legs, not long legs.6 These are some of the more obvious implications. Somewhat less obvious is the gradual insidious onset of chronic musculoskeletal injuries that arise from poor ergonomics.

Measuring Cars for Tall People

There are things you can do to make your car more tall friendly, and I’ll get to these later. But the most important thing you can do is pick a tall friendly car in the first place. There are a variety of measurements that can help with this. I’ll cover the well-known legroom and headroom measurements first, and then get on to some more novel ones.

Legroom is a measure of the longest leg that can fit in a fully slid back seat. The measurement is complicated by the bending of the knee joint. Though the Society of Automotive Engineers’ (SAE) standards require that a dummy be used to take the measurement, a good approximation can be achieved via a tape measure.

Headroom is the vertical distance, with the seat in the lowest position, from the lowest point on the seat to a point on the roof directly above it. I’ve found headroom to be a misleading measurement as cars differ in the extent to which the roof rises above the vision line; though it may be comfortable to occupy this space, it’s dangerous to do so as visibility is cut off. So an alternative measurement would instead go to the top of the windshield. I like to call this ‘eyeroom’.

Another measurement I have come up with is called Vision Line Height (VLH). It’s the vertical distance from the foot well (floor mat removed) to where the windshield meets the roof (with the floor mat removed, which can often be in excess of 1/2″ thick). VLH is a measurement of useful cabin space, essentially.

Best cars for tall people: Vision Line Height

Both eyeroom and VLH are better than headroom for picking out the best cars for tall people. As to which is better, this is debatable. For those willing to do modifications, VLH will be better. Otherwise, eyeroom might be better. But VLH has the added bonuses of being simple to measure and also evaluating how easy a car is to get into and out of; even small increases in roof height have been shown to improve posture during ingress and egress.58 When I was searching for my own car, I was desperate to find something that permitted me a straight spine, even if that meant seat modifications, so I went with VLH. You’ll find a list of VLH measurements for various cars at the bottom of this page.

The top cars for VLH are the Ford Transit Connect (51-1/2″), Ford E-series vans (49-1/8″), the pre-2007 Scion XB (47-1/2″), and the Honda Element (46-5/8″). Other noteworthy cars are the Nissan Titan (46″), the Honda Pilot (46″), the Ford Escape (46-1/4″), and the Ford Flex (46-3/8″). If you are truly desperate, there is also the commercial Mercedes Sprinter (52-3/4″).

Much to the contrary of popular opinion, behemoth vehicles don’t necessarily provide lots of space for tall people, the Jeeps and Hummers being prime examples.

A Jeep With Poor Headroom for tall people

Long-limbed tall people may find legroom to be a bigger problem than vertical space. Such people may prefer to use legroom as the main measurement when searching for a car. However, picking a car with a large VLH is still important as it means the seat can be in a higher position, which coincides with more legroom. Besides, it is possible to modify cars to get more car legroom for tall people, but this is not the case for cabin height.

It is my hope that, with your help, Vision Line Height will become a standard measurement provided by car manufacturers. This will make the suitability of cars for tall people more transparent and might even inspire a visionary manufacturer to produce a car with an unusually large Vision Line Height! So please use this term whenever you can. For a list of measurements, see Vision Line Height.

Helping Tall People See Traffic Lights

tall drivers can't see traffic lights

Another huge frustration for tall people is not being able to see traffic lights. We end up hunching down and craning our necks up as we watch for the light to turn green. I’ve tried all kinds of fixes, like backup cams and mirrors installed on the dashboard and even cutting a hole in the roof (my head ended up sticking out…). Sometimes I would look at the reflection on the hood of my car or on the wet pavement on a rainy day. By far the best solution though that I have come across is what’s called a Fresnel lens.

Fresnel lenses are essentially flattened lenses. They were originally invented for lighthouses to better direct the light to nearby ships without such a big lens. Other applications include gathering light for solar power and magnification for overhead projectors. For us though, they redirect the light from the traffic light to our eyes. Just a thin sheet of plastic suctioned to the window and Voila! you can see traffic lights. It is a small image, and I wouldn’t suggest using it for anything other than checking to see when the light turns green (at which point you double check with direct line of sight).

Fresnel Lens to See Traffic Lights

Modifying Car Seats for Tall Drivers

The following is for information purposes only: see site disclaimer.

As with the rest of the car, seats aren’t designed for tall people. But there are some modification you can do. If it’s extra legroom you want, there are seat rail extensions you can purchase via the image link below. Basically, you remount your seat in a more aft position, gaining you some precious legroom.

Car Seat Rail Extensions for More Legroom

If it’s more headroom you’re after, it may be possible to modify the seat brackets to hold the seat in a lower position. Though you might be able to find a job shop to do this, chances are they’ll be concerned about liability so you would have to do it yourself. Perhaps a better option is to remove some material from your seat cushion. A skilled upholsterer may be able to help out with this. As you can see below, I am no skilled upholsterer!

Best cars for tall people: Replacing Seat Cushion

If it’s seat comfort in general you want to address, you can get extra tall car seats. Scrap the plural actually; there is only one I have heard of, and that is the Vario XXL. For more, check out this post from a community member that wrote in about this seat: Extra Tall Car Seats for Tall Drivers.

Vario XXL Greiner Tall Car Seat for Tall People

Finding the Best Cars for Tall People

Though modifications can be helpful, it’s best to start out with a suitable car in the first place. That gets us back to the question, “Which are the best cars for tall people?”

When asked this question, a lot of people might suggest getting a really big vehicle, like a pickup truck or SUV. However, there isn’t much correlation between the size of the vehicle and it’s suitability for a tall person. Rather, extra size is usually devoted to a higher wheel base, larger engine, or more cargo space. Try sitting in a Mini Cooper and then a Humvee and you’ll see what I mean. Another common suggestion is to just get a convertible or stick your head out the sunroof. Funny, but extremely dangerous!

Cars for tall people: Head out sun roof

In your search for your ideal car, you might start by looking at the manufacturers’ specs online, including legroom and headroom. There is also the VLH table at the bottom of this page. In the end though, there is no substitute for actually sitting in a car. And it is such an important decision; your health depends on it. So it is best to take the time and do the rounds of the various dealerships. If you’d like extra attention from a sales person, you might try my tactic and say: “If you can put me in a car where my head doesn’t touch the roof, I’ll buy it.” I ended up with a Honda Element, probably the best purchase I have ever made.

More Tips for Tall Drivers

  • Avoid sunroofs like the plague; tracks are mounted inside the car, steeling precious headroom!
  • If the steering wheel blocks view of the speedometer, try a heads up display.
  • Though floor mats keep things clean, you can gain a significant amount of legroom by removing them.
  • Rearview mirrors can block your view, these can be remounted higher up.

Raised rear view mirror for tall driver

The Future of Cars for Tall People

Manufactured goods in general tend not to be suitable for tall people. There just aren’t enough of us to attract the attention. Nevertheless, goods like tall clothing are getting better. So why not cars?

The answer has to do with the huge individual price of cars and the rigid manufacturing methods involving costly jigs and fixtures. But there is a promising new manufacturing technique on the horizon. The Urbee, perhaps the first of its kind, uses a 3D printed body. Further down the road it will be possible to 3D print even more of the car. Suddenly, variations in car geometry become cheaper as costly jigs and molds are no longer required. It may be possible, someday down the road, for cars to be made in multiple sizes and perhaps even tailored to the driver.

However, there’s a growing sentiment that our current usage of cars is unsustainable. This is because of pollution, inaccessibility for people who don’t drive, and impaired drivers. Perhaps the most likely replacement will revolve around electric robotized smaller forms of public transportation that can go door to door. The troubling word here is smaller; if these things are designed for the masses, and thus cater to the average size, it will be a chore for us to stand up for more space. Hopefully, knock on wood while there still is some, these things won’t go down the same dark path as airplane seats.


  1. Justice M of. Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations. Canada; 2015.
  2. Boer ER, Bruin J de, Abbink D de, Ward NJ de, Manser M de. Are Drivers with Small Feet or Long Legs at Greater Risk of Rear end Collisions. In: Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting. ; 2006.
  3. Yoganandan N, Baisden JL, Maiman DJ, Pintar FA. Type II odontoid fracture from frontal impact: case report and biomechanical mechanism of injury. J Neurosurg Spine. 2005;2(4).
  4. Sochor MR, Faust DP, Wang SC, Schneider LW. Knee , Thigh and Hip Injury Patterns for Drivers and Right Front Passengers in Frontal Impacts Reprinted From : Biomechanics. Injury. 2003;(724).
  5. Chong M, Sochor M, Ipaktchi K, Brede C, Poster C, Wang S. The interaction of “occupant factors” on the lower extremity fractures in frontal collision of motor vehicle crashes based on a level I trauma center. J Trauma. 2007;62(3).
  6. Untaroiu C, Kerrigan J, Kam C, et al. Correlation of strain and loads measured in the long bones with observed kinematics of the lower limb during vehicle-pedestrian impacts. Stapp Car Crash J. 2007;51(October).
  7. Causse J, Wang X, Denninger L. An experimental investigation on the requirement of roof height and sill width for car ingress and egress. Ergonomics. 2012;(October 2014).

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120 thoughts on “Best Cars for Tall People

  • Steve Lochridge

    The VLH isn’t the measurement you need. I’m 6’7″ and fit comfortably in a 2007 Kia Optima with 42″ VLH. You need the measurement from the SEAT to the top of the windshield. A 46″ VLH doesn’t mean squat if the seat is too high and won’t adjust down like many trucks and jeeps.

    P.S. – There are lots of tall people in Germany. Buy VWs. LOL

    • Tall Sam Post author

      Hi Steve, there are pros and cons for VLH versus the measurement you mentioned. I’ll cover these in a future post. Thanks for your comment.

      • Steve Lochridge

        Well, the cons would be that it only helps if I plan on making major modifications like changing out the seats.
        My reason for responding is that I’ve been looking for a car and I’m 6’7″. When I look for a car, I have no interest in what the manufacturer had to work with, nor do I consider spending extra money to modify a seat. I want a car that fits me. The measurement I care about the most is the one that shows I can sit in the vehicle and properly look out the window AND have head room. The VLH doesn’t do that.
        Hey, it’s a neat measurement, but it doesn’t help tall people. Once again, I drive a 2007 Kia Optima with a VLH of 42. I fit fine without having to lower the seat all the way. I believe you showed a pic of a Hummer with a VLH of 43 and the guy was sitting way too high. Just because I can fit in an Optima, I wouldn’t consider a Hummer just because it’s POSSIBLE to put in a custom seat that would allow me to fit.
        So, the VLH is a valid measurement but I’d like to see the other measurement when I’m looking for cars to test drive.
        This is about “tall life”. I don’t know how many tall people would appreciate misleading measurements with a caveat of, “Oh, but it’ll work if you spend an extra $1000 to replace the seat.”
        It’ll only take going to a couple of cars with VLH measurements tof realize they don’t help.
        I need to know the height after I sit down. That measurement is from sitting position to the top of the windshield.
        I’m not against the VLH. It just doesn’t help this tall person.

        • Tall Sam Post author

          Hi Steve, you make some great points. I am planning to measure from the seat to the top of the windshield next time I make the dealer lot rounds and after that I’ll try to do a bit of an analysis. In the meantime, I will say that the VLH is easy to measure and works well for picking out good cars for tall people. For instance, the car with the largest VLH on the market, the Ford Transit Connect, is the only car endorsed by Tall Clubs International. The few that follow after, the Ford Econoline, the old Scion XB, and the Honda Element, are all notoriously good for tall people. The VLH also is good for Ingress and Egress. And for the extremely tall among us who must modify, there is no substitute for the VLH. But I definitely see that the other measurement is superior in other ways. My next round of measurements will have both. I’m not sure when I’m going to have time though. If you wanted to contribute, we’d all be grateful. One of the challenges is figuring out how to do the measurement quickly and easily. I’m thinking a level combine with a tape measure.
          Awesome input Steve.

          • David Crandall

            Hi, I found your article very interesting and useful. I’m not tall, just 5’8″, but I have a really bad back which requires me to put towels on the seat, so that it’s not slanting back, and so that it’s higher – that adds few inches. Then, I sit really straight. After analyzing things for myself, I concluded that what you call VLH is the exact measure which is important to me, and I bring a tape measure to dealers. First, I bought a 2004 Scion XB, which was great, but then I totalled it ,and the new XBs were shorter, so I bought a Honda Element. It’s OK, but still, believe it or not, shorter than optimal for me. I think I might try a Ford Transit Connect, based on your list. Do you know if they are still making them so tall? Or are there any other newer vehicles with VLH greater than an Element?

          • Tall Sam Post author

            Hi, thanks for your comment. I don’t think they’ve changed the VLH on the Ford Transit Connect. My own Honda Element is starting to get a bit worn out and, given they stopped making them in 2011, I’m starting to eye the Transit Connect myself too!

          • Camille Newlon

            As a 5’3″ physical therapist (yes, not considered tall at all), I knew when test-driving my Honda Element that I’d be able to rig the seat to be comfortable and good for my back. I’ve been sitting on about 6″ of firm foam (combination of the garden kneeling pads and other materials) and have room for my lower legs to go straight down, as in a chair, and sit fully erect, generally away from the back of the seat. If you are old enough, you’ll recognize that this is similar to how one sat in an early 50s car. And the steering wheel was close enough to be held with bent elbows. Having been in a couple hard-hit accidents and having absolutely no discomfort convinces me that this is how I need to be sitting–there was no lag time for my muscles to react–they were already engaged. I’m now facing having to replace my Element and I’M LOOKING FOR FLOOR TO CEILING HEIGHT, not seat to ceiling with my legs stretched out in front of me. This is information that also is not readily available.

          • Stretch

            I just want to second your recommendation. I’m 6’6” and have owned many vehicles. Other than full size pickups, the only car that I found with sufficient head and legroom is first generation Scion xBs (2004-2006). They’re not much to look at, but are as roomy as a truck inside. Because they’re very reliable there are tons of them still available and affordable. Also great on gas. I’ve had two, currently driving an ‘05 and honestly they’ve been my favorite vehicle to drive.

          • Tall Life Post author

            Stretch! The nicknames we get here 🙂
            I was so close to buying a Scion XB. Only thing that held me back was low ground clearance. Perhaps it would have lasted longer than my Honda Element did (rocker panels rusted out).

        • Scott

          Hi Steve,

          I am 6’3 and would also love to have a wide range of cars available that I fit comfortably without modification. Alas, this is not currently what the market provides, and ‘tall’ people are a small segment of the market, limiting our influence.

          Considering the purchase price of a car, fuel, insurance and maintenance, as well as the price, time and pain of needing continual visits to the physical therapist, if spending $1..2k for a better seat will get me a pain-free driving experience and stop fueling my neck and shoulder pain and inflammation then I will spend it as a health investment!

          The VLH measurement concept seems a very helpful one. As an engineer myself, I am sure that providing engineers with a clear design criterion makes designing a car to accommodate tall people a much more straightforward process, making it -far- more likely to occur.

  • hilarychristensen

    Hi Sam, I really appreciate this info. I’m a little suspect of some of these numbers. I have been trying to find a car that will fit me and my tall, getting taller boys. So, I’ve been going around trying cars (mainly minivans ugh). I’ve found that unless they are the top of the line models they do not have a height adjustment option for the driver, none have one for the passenger. The worst van for me was the Honda Odyssey. Even with the seat down all the way I couldn’t see traffic lights. The dealer took me over to a Pilot and I fit in that really well. I’ve pretty much given up on the minivan idea at this point. But i was surprised when I looked at this list to see the Odyssey’s numbers. I feel like I shouldn’t have had so much trouble with that little a difference between the VLH for the Pilot and the Odyssey.
    Giving up on the minivan, and not liking the prices of the SUV’s these days!

        • Tall Life Post author

          Not specifically. But I have sat in a lot of pickup trucks and the conventional wisdom that bigger vehicles are better for tall people is wrong. That being said, Ford Vans are curiously much better than other vans for tall people. Perhaps this is true for pickups too. I used to drive a Ford 150 from 1989. The headroom wasn’t great, but that was when I was in my early 20’s and my spine was much more forgiving.

      • Gary

        I drive a Ford Transit for work (2014). It has enough room between my knee and the dashboard if I’m OK/comfortable with keeping the outside of my right knee 10 inches from the center of the steering wheel. At this point the flare of the center console is where my knee would like to be… I’d say I need 4-6 inches more to be comfortable. Aside from having room between my knee and the dash I need to find a vehicle that does not have a center console that interferes with my knee. And anyone considering a transit should know that during winter months the heat passing through the part of the console where your knee hits it is so hot it will cook your skin… I have to wedge a newspaper or hat between them to avoid injury. I have looked and cannot find any modern vehicle with room for my knee except a full sized pickup… I want a car, not a pickup.

        • Tall Life Post author

          Dang, I wasn’t aware of that hot counsel problem. I’m counting on a Transit Connect being my next vehicle. Is it a Transit Connect you drive or a full sized Transit? Hopefully the newer years in the consumer wagon style have a better insulated console…

          • Anonymous

            I am 6’5″ and my biggest issue with driving comfortably is the center console…..they are often too high and with long legs force you to keep your right leg in one position. Excruciating for me on longer drives.

          • Matthew R

            The Honda Pilot Gen1 has a gear shift that is positioned exactly where your knee wants to rest. At 6’8 and 36 inseam i can just manage to push back in the seat to graze the very sharp casing.of the shift.

        • Meerkat

          My 16 year old son is 7 feet tall and we can’t find a vehicle for him to drive. Any suggestions? His knees are jammed a d his head often hits the ceiling.

          • Tall Life Post author

            Something with a large VLH like the Transit Connect Passenger Wagon will have the best shot at accommodating him vertically. But legroom will be an issue. I’ve been asking the owners of a company called ExtendMySeat to build seat rail extensions for the Transit Connect, but I don’t think they’ve gotten around to it yet. If enough people ask, they’ll eventually do it. Or if someone just brings them a Transit Connect, they’ll do it. A Transit Connect with a couple extra inches of seat rail would be pretty awesome. Hopefully that would be enough for your son, though no way to know for sure without trying… There might be some other cars with decent VLH they already to seat rail extensions for.

          • Big Bob

            Check out the first generation Toyota Venza (preferably without a sunroof) and then get seat extenders from I am 6’10” and I fit OK in my 2009 Venza, although I wish I had found one without a sunroof. I am considering getting the seat extenders, but I really don’t drive that many miles at one time, so I’ve been OK without the extenders.

            The ExtendMySeat website shows seat extenders available for multiple vehicles. Perhaps you could find something else that is close and then get seat extenders. One vehicle you could consider would the Honda CR-V. My daughter has a 2009 that I can drive, but seat extenders would probably make it a much better experience.

            If pickups are an option, I’ve found many of those that I can drive comfortably. I have a 96 Dodge Ram that has power seats and the leg and head room in that vehicle is awesome!

          • Bonnie

            It’s been a while since you posted this but did you consider a Honda Element? My son is 6’10 & fits well in his w/room to spare. The new ones are pricey but can find a lot of good used ones & the only have a sunroof above the back seats so you don’t have to keep asking to make sure the ones you looking at DON’T have a sunroof b/c that’s a deal-breaker when you’re tall

    • Marla

      My boys are tall too and finding a back seat that has leg room for them is pretty tough. My husband 6′, 15 year old 6’4 and 12 year old 5’7. In addition to the front row for the assumed tall parents, how about some mentions of what works for tall kids to fit comfortably in a cars back seat.

      • kerrbear

        That is exactly our issue. Tall genetics are at play! We need front seat and back seat room! Maybe a mini-van with the middle seats taken out? Ha Ha! Since your post in March, did you find anything?

      • Anonymous

        I’m 6’3″. My brothers are 6’4″, 6’6″ and 6’9″. We all fit nicely in my 2010 Ford Flex. There’s a lot of headroom and legroom in this vehicle. Unfortunately, Ford has stopped making them.

        • Tall Life Post author

          I totally agree, Ford Flex is a good car for tall people. Well, was anyway… Someone up there does not like boxy cars! Honda Element Scion XB original body, and now Ford Flex all chopped!

  • Anonymous

    Great article!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! My problem exactly, vision line height. Any updates on measurements for 2016 cars? Our lease on our SUV is up, thanks!

    • Tall Sam Post author

      Thanks! Sadly I haven’t gone through and looked at 2016 cars, no time! But if you are after the best, not much has changed, Ford Transit Connect still reigns. Please let us know if you find any gems and what you finally decide on!

  • Hugh J MacLellan

    Steve i am getting older and find that if my hips are lower than my knees my hips and back get sore. do you know of any cars /suv that has seats that are 16″-17″ from seat cushion to the floor pan. any help would be great as i am 6’4″ with 36″ legs

    • Steve

      I get sick of hearing what a small percentage tall people make up in the market. How about this: Tall people usually MARRY short people. We both have to be able to drive it. If your car doesn’t fit me, my 5’6″ wife doesn’t get to look at it. How you like me now?

      So, to be helpful to some others in this thread, I found the following vehicles worked great for tall AND short people. Ooooo. What a concept.
      Mazda CX-5
      VW Tiguan
      Ford Escape
      Acura MDX

      I even fit in a 2013 VW Beetle. The Germans figured it out apparently.

      I fit okay in a 2016 Honda CRV but it was borderline.

      Many of the new SUVs are basically shorter and less powerful station wagons. It’s sad.

      Of course I can fit in the $60,000+ extended cab pickups, but last time I shelled out that much. I bought a house.

      So, engineers need to stop making excuses and make cars for everyone and stop discriminating against tall people. If we all left, we take basketball. football with us … along with our shorter spouses. It’s easy to accommodate. Saturn did it. You simply lower the floor by 2 inches. Then our knees come down. Or, you could take a trip to Germany and tell them our American engineers need some tutoring.

      Ok. I’m through venting. This wasn’t meant to attack you. I’m just frustrated with engineers who jumped on the “you can’t please everybody” train after 2 minutes of thought.

      • Hugo!! ;)

        Haha! My brother and wife have a Ford Escape – he is 6’3″, was 6’4″, she is about 5’6″. I have a 6’2″ 15 year old with about a 35 “inseam a few months ago – so probably 36 ” by now! His knees touch my MItsubishi Outlander’s dashboard – seat is all the way back. God forbid, we get rear-ended!!

        I need what you are mentioning as well as cargo space that will fit my border collie’s Gunnar Kennel. The kennel was a pretty penny, but cheaper than a sugery that my dog might not make!!

  • Pat

    In 2012, I was looking to buy a new car. My main concern was being able to look out the center of the front window & having a comfortable seat where after a long drive my back did not kill me. Minivans fit this requirement, but are just too big. I recalled in 2007 sitting in & getting in & out of a new Kia Rondo & thought it was great, but Kia did not have a good rep at that time. No 2012 Rondo, so I tried a Kia Soul. It was OK, but there was a 2008 Rondo on the used car lot & I drove it, loved it & bought it & still own it today (2017). I love it’s visibility, size, access, seats, etc. Too bad Kia doesn’t make it today in the USA.
    Note: I think if Kia would put the Rondo taillight design on a Soul, it would improve the overall looks.

  • Bill Rawlins

    I’m 6’6″. I was just looking for a smallish hatchback. I tried the Ford Escape. What tall people need is to be able to tilt their knees to the side and rest them comfortably against the console. The 2017 Escape was awful. The 2017 Chevy Cruze worked great, so we just bought one. It’s not just the length or the height that counts. It’s the comfort level with the knees on a 3-hour drive.

    • Tall Sam Post author

      You make a great point. Cars have little idiosyncrasies that can make or break comfort for tall people, and these aren’t so easy to measure. There’s no substitute for getting in the drivers seat!

  • Michelle

    Good article. These are good things to think about when looking for a car. I find that at 6’2″ I fit in cars ok, but often smash my head on the door frame getting out of the car. Any recommendations on cars with higher door frames? I prefer smaller cars (city driving) and want to avoid SUVs and trucks – but don’t know if anything like that exists.

    • Tall Sam Post author

      Glad you liked it!
      Cars with a large VLH tend to be easy to get in and out of. My Honda Element for instance is super easy to get in and out of without bending my spine at all, whereas a typical sedan requires quite a bit of contortion. The technical terms for getting in and out are ingress and egress. You might actually do a little searching for those and see what cars come up.

  • BJ Hart

    This was a good article. It clearly addresses the issues people have with buy cars, not just tall people, but short as well. A family I know average probably 5′ tall between the 4 of them, the shortest is 4’10”. Ever see an adult have to use a booster seat, by law.
    Anyway. I am 6′ tall, but have a 30/32 inseam, which means I used to run really fast, but not for very long. I also run a local delivery company and that means I have access to a LOT of different vehicles.
    The transit express and sprinters are crazy for headroom for me. The sprinter has all kinds of good adjustments as well. Our kenworth has great headroom but no legroom, even for me. We have two GMC Sierra’s (penske trucks) and both have good leg room and headroom but horrid vision, the windshield is about 2″ lower than my eyes. New ford trucks, my brother has a ’16 F350, even with the sunroof shade open I have to lean the seat way back. My 02 civic had far better ergonomics than the ford. Parents have a PT cruiser, To short and the windshield is about 4″ lower than my eyes, backseat is fine though. 02 Durango, fine on headroom, just tiny seats.

    Finding a vehicle that fits, sometime we are stuck with what we can find. I personally drive a 94 Dodge Dakota, and it fits perfect, great headroom and legroom. So until I can find something that doesn’t seem like it should have free candy written on the side (sprinter, transit) I will keep fixing my pickup, but it’s getting old,220k.

    Carmakers cannot make cars that fit everyone. It would be impractical. But they can at least try a little better. But I am amazed about what cars do fit and what don’t.

    • Tall Sam Post author

      Free candy, lol! Well put! Sad that the most tall friendly vehicles look like that. It is for this reason my girlfriend has vetoed the Econoline, Sprinter, and even the Transit. Transit is definitely better than the other two though, especially the new ones, and I might able to change her mind on that. Thanks for writing in BJ!

  • Thomas Boswell

    I’m 6’8 and recently bought a newish car, a 2015 Kia Sorentoe, A very tight fit, I had the seat pushed back additional 3 inches, but still the footwell is very tight for the feet. I looked in the 2015 model year mostly. Others I found to be big enough were Mazda X9 and the Lincoln SUV both had bigger engines and priced above my price points. One shocker was the 2014 Nissan Cube, I would have bought if I hadn’t found the Sorentoe. The build quality of the Sorentoe is Superior all the cars I have listed.. meaning it keeps its resale value for a longer..

  • Janet

    I’m 60+, female, 6′ with a 38 inch inseam, heavy build. I have bad knees and find most cars sit too low to the ground. I end up basically doing a free fall hoping to hit the seat when I get into a car, then I have to ‘climb’ out. I am on the road a lot for work carrying a great deal of supplies. A van or SUV seems like the best for me due to cargo space. Which of the SUV or minivan Make/body would you recommend?

    • Tall Sam Post author

      The butt first free fall, I know exactly what you’re talking about! Maybe try grabbing the ‘Oh S***’ handle to help decelerate you. As far as another vehicle, I would normally suggest the Ford Transit Connect, however it doesn’t sound like vertical space is your issue. Rather, you just want something with a higher seat. If that’s the case, you have a slew of options, not really sure what to suggest… likely other factors like budget and preferred brand will drive your decision process. Good luck!

  • Pär Lidén

    Great article. After reading I’ve finally understand why I dislike driving most cars. I realized that what you call the vision line height is the single most important metric to me. Most cars sadly have the window line too low.

    Too bad that that quite a lot of the cars in your list are not available in Europe, or at least not in my country (Finland).
    However, I’ve found that the Opel Meriva with 114 cm (44 7/8″) and Toyota Verso with 115 cm (45 1/4″) are better than many others. I’ll probably go for one of those. This article has helped in understanding which car I need.

    • Tall Sam Post author

      Thanks for the feedback, Par! You’d think there would be a market for tall friendly cars over, what with tall populations like the Dutch. I’ll have to dig more into this someday… I do have to say I like how much more utility European cars often have, I wish I could get my hands on one of those pop-top camper vans!

  • David C

    Have a look at MINI Cooper. They’re built to sit a bit more vertically, which pulls your legs back (less leg room required) and lets you see out particularly well. At 6’3″ I have no issues with headroom, and the roof doesn’t curve down to block my view out any window the way far too many smaller vehicles do. I do have the issue mentioned above seeing stop lights, and have seen dealers offering Fresnel lenses though I haven’t tried one personally. Even the back seat is surprisingly roomy, and I’ve tested that on hour+ drives. Instrument panel and controls are great for me, too.

    Another issue you didn’t mention is seeing your gauges. Many vehicles, even with adjustable steering wheels, leave the wheel between my eyes and the top half of the instrument panel. I hate having to duck to check my speed. Similarly, controls in the center console are often set too far back, so that if my elbow is against the seat they’re still behind my wrist. Not ergonomic at all.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Hi David, good points. I am going to have to try out a mini cooper again soon, I don’t seem to have the VLH measurement here. I have the speedometer problem too, I mentioned a heads up display is one way to get around it, perhaps I’ll expand on that part a bit.

      • Bonns

        I had a couple of Mini Coopers – I’m 6′ tall and it was the first car I ever drove where I didn’t have the seat all the way back. Surprising amount of leg room for a small car.

    • Tall Life Post author

      This is a measurement I hope to provide for some cars in the future, when the seat is in the lowest position. Are you wanting that or when it is in the highest position?

      • Camille Newlon

        probably the highest, since I’m trying to maximize the height so my lower leg can be more nearly vertical and my knee not high than my hip; that’s what my back doesn’t tolerate. The more it is like a standard kitchen chair, the better–like the ’53 Chevy where sitting was intentionally vertical.

  • Ewan Botterill

    Great article. I find manufacturer published headroom figures misleading. Do they measure to the glass of a sunroof? In most cases, a car with a sunroof that opens inside the car is not viable for me at 6ft 4in, whereas a car with a fixed pano roof, or a roof that opens outwards is often OK. Of course the governing factor is not the glass itself but the lowest edge of the sunroof opening. In some cases like BMW, to save cost, use the same molded roof liner regardless of whether there is a sunroof installed or not. I found this out when looking at an M2 which is sold in Canada without a sunroof. The BMW was still no good for me as its molded roof liner encroaches too much on the headroom.

    In addition, doors are a major factor. having to duck on the way in and out with a bad back is an issue. When the seat is all the way back on its rails this exacerbates the issue of exit by having to lean forward and roll. This brings you into collision with the steering wheel which has been extended out so as not to strain your arms…

    Sitting in cars is the only way to find the right car. Manufacturer figures are unclear and misleading (and copied without veryfying by magazines).

    • Tall Life Post author

      Glad you liked it, Ewan. I’ve always assumed all sunroofs take up headroom, so you’ve got me interested to check out fixed pano roofs and roofs that open outwards. You’re also giving me some more motivation to go out and verify headroom measurements across brands!

  • Ric Giorgi

    Thank you for much useful information but there is one measure you’re not listing, I call it the Body Aperture Distance – It’s the space between the top of the seat cushion to the upper lip of the door opening. It’s crucial especially for older tall people because it determines whether a person will have to get into the vehicle head first or whether they can sit on the seat and then move their body into the cabin without tilting their head or hitting their head on the upper door frame opening.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Great point Ric! I will look into including this measurement next time I go measure some cars. My Honda Element has a huge opening, making ingress/egress really easy. My girlfriends Ford Fusion on the other had forces me to do some rather awkward contortions. Doing a little digging, I found a publication listing a similar measurement, but the name sucks: SUITABILITY OF VEHICLES FOR OLDER DRIVERSACCESSIBILITY MEASUREMENTS. I like your name much better, but I’m wondering if there might be something even simpler.

  • Alan C

    Tall certainly includes variations in proportions as well. I am 6’2″ with a 36″ inseam. Unfortunately, even when vehicles accommodate for leg room, they often lack on steering wheel adjustability. I find myself in an unsafe position to feel in control of the steering wheel. Telescopic steering adjustment is becoming far more common, but often pushes further into the dash more often that extending away from. This may help shorter drivers such as my wife, who is 5’2″ “tall”. I have sat in a few vehicles that when adjusting the seat all the way back, I literally could not reach the wheel. I know there are some luxury vehicles that also offer an extending seat bottom that the seat base can be pulled further up behind the knees. I have sat in a couple of these as well, but doesn’t really accomodate my personal comfort desires. I am a bit of an auto enthusiast. I have considered a few times of starting a blog for long legged car shopping and charting the details. Not sure that it would ever get any real interest.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Yup, is a shame they go to all the effort of putting in telescoping steering wheels but the range is piddly. I’ve thought about using a secondary wheel installed on top of the first so I don’t have to reach as much, or maybe just one of those knobs for spinning the steering wheel would help a bit. Long legged car shopping would be a tight niche for sure. If you ever felt like writing up an article, I’d be interested to post it here on Tall Life.

      • Kerri Godfrey

        We just bought a 2018 Volkswagen Atlas! My husband (6’6.5” can wear his fedora hat while driving comfortably. My son, (rapidly approaching 6’) can sit behind him with ample room for his feet , knees, head. Try it on! Highly suggest it!

        • J.Allen

          I’m 6’4” and considered a new VW Atlas after renting one and seeing how roomy they are. But I have heard many owners are having problems with them and VW has a shortage of repair parts which means your new car sits at the dealer for weeks or months. Have you had any problems with your Atlas ??

  • Matt

    Altima is the best fit for me. I sat in many cars before I found my 2014 Sport Altima. The seat goes down and the steering wheel is small and it goes up. I also have size 16 shoes which barely fit in any vehicle.. I do not fit in any Hondas or Toyotas. I am a big guy. Big GMC trucks work, but they are not in my price range. I do not sit stralight up in the car, but I am 23 so far the leaning back a little is not a problem.

  • Amy

    You may be interested to learn I’m a mere 5’ 6.5” but because of my long upper body I find my (granted, small) Corolla unbearably small. And I have a sunroof. I know. But still. 5-6 and I can’t fit in a car?? Nuts.

  • Andrew

    Hi , I am only six feet but have a long torso and looking for a new suv . I’ve noticed a lot of info is years old out there and was wondering if there is any info on the newer luxury SUVs . I have a back and neck issue and my head is always close to the roof if I want to use a lumbar roll or car seat . I’ve sat in a bunch and the only one was the Range Rover but it is too expensive . Also , the sales guy said they lowered the ceiling on every car on the lot last year but the top Range Rover . BMW X5 I was Told also lowered the headroom as well as many others .
    I was wondering if you know what might be the best play for a luxury suv. Thanks very much . Was going to get the Mercedes gle 350 for the safety features and it seemed better than others but wasn’t sure . Thanks again

    • Tall Life Post author

      As you can see, I haven’t had a look around for the best cars for tall people since 2013. Perhaps there are some that haven’t changed, but I imagine many have and in the wrong direction as you point out! I was extremely disappointed when they dropped the roof of the Scion XB! I don’t know what it is with car manufacturers… perhaps it’s the better fuel economy or the sportier look of a lower roof line… So weird to think I wouldn’t trade my Honda Element for the fanciest car out there (unless of course I could sell the fancy car and get a Honda Element plus cash 🙂

      I did sit in a Tesla Model X recently which was the best electric car for tall people I know of, you might check that out. Other than that, I don’t really have any tips on the best luxury cars for tall people at the moment… Best of luck!

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  • Steve

    Thigh support is also important, to me anyway. I found a GMC Sierra to be the best for me. Driving a subaru forester with cushions under me to get my legs in a better position.

  • Tony

    I’m looking for a car that is compatabile for an person 6’10”-6’11”. Can you offer some suggestions. No minivans. It’s or my kid. He is 19 and in college.

  • Chris

    The Ford C Max is surprisingly accommodating for taller people I am 6′ 6″ and don’t have to lean the seat too far back. The seats could use more adjustment for thighs and side support, but basic dimensions are pretty good

  • Doo Wop Danny

    6’4″, 36″ inseam. My senior year in high school I owned a 1948 Ford coupe which had great head room and leg room and decent visual for us tall characters. Easy to get in and out. Too bad they had to get all streamlined. My all time most comfortable ride was a 79 Continental with velour seats. Just like sitting in a recliner. 2nd was a 93 Chevy Gladiator conversion van – loved those cloth captains chairs with plenty of thigh support. Also had a 99 Econoline Waldoch conversion van that was comfy. Can’t find them anymore. Being a retired snowbird, the semi-annual 1800 mile drive is way too uncomfortable in our 2015 Sienna. Am just starting to investigate either a Ford or GM crew cab pickup or luxury SUV now with at least 12-way power seats and telescopic wheel. Not much to choose from in northern Minnesota, though. Maybe will have to find an old rust free conversion van and have it restored.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Hey Doo Wop Danny. That’s fascinating about the old Ford coupe. I will have to go measure some old cars next time there’s a vintage car show in town. People have gotten taller over the years, but are we making cars less tall friendly?!

      You might consider a Ford Transit cargo van. They are spectacularly tall friendly, have tons of space inside, and, from what I have read, have a maximum towing capacity of 7500 lbs!!

  • Deb

    I have a 15 year old son who is 6’10” and possibly not done growing yet. He just started practice driving and his legs do not fit under the steering wheel in our Honda Element. Any suggestions?

    • Tall Life Post author

      That’s a tough one. I personally chose the Honda Element because I need and value headroom more than legroom. But if they legroom just doesn’t cut it and he still needs that kind of headroom, things become very tricky. I suggest getting the list of vehicles that ExtendMySeat has seat rail extension brackets for and seeing which of these has the most headroom (or VLH if it’s on my VLH measurement list or you have the time to measure).

  • Paul

    I have a 2017 Subaru outback which actually works quite well in a number of areas with visibility and Lankes comfort. I traded in a Ford F1 50 which really wasn’t much better in terms of some of the dimensions. But at this time I would recommend That tall people such as myself at 6 feet 5 inches should look at the Subaru outback and compare to even something like an F1 50 Ford truck. As a member of the 2%

  • Tall Jerry 53

    I’m 6’10” and I drive a 2011 Dodge Durango. It may not look big enough from the outside, but surprisingly it’s roomy inside. Driver and passenger seats have plenty of legroom. Second row not so much. The third row surprisingly have plenty of room. Third row is a two-seater.

  • TX Bigfoot

    At 6-5″ and 345lbs I qualify as fat & tall. My Ford Excursion has tons of room…can even wear my cowboy hat while driving. It’s more truck than I need and I’m looking at some 10 year old Toyota Seinna vans, but not sure I can fit into one comfortably. Any feedback helpful. Thx

  • tall-in-the-saddle

    A very long torso and a stiff neck have made door opening height and headroom a real problem for me. I’ve been driving a Nisan Cube for the last five years, as my only option was a 3/4 ton pickup. We later bought a 2016 Explorer Sport for my wife so we can make highway trips. I can get in the Explorer, but it requires some serious contortions. Though it was fun to drive around town, the Cube was small and tinny and noisy inside, and I couldn’t wait to find an alternative.

    See the new 2019 Subaru Forester. I sat right down in it, and was sold long before I even drove it. The opening isn’t as tall as the Cube’s was, but it is much better than the Explorer’s. The headroom is adequate – even with a sunroof. (You have to drive a pretty basic model to get one without a sunroof.) The car is quiet with a very sleek interior, and the electronic gadgets are decades ahead of what I was used to. I can’t really swear to the legroom, but it seems roomy to me. It’s worth a trip to a Subaru dealer to check one out.

      • Buster

        Tried the Transit Connect, and while I could (shock) see through the center of the windshield rather than the top, I was underwhelmed by the seat. It was very narrow and very uncomfortable. Also, it still rode my hips below my knees, even after adjusting it up to where my knees nearly touched the steering wheel. This was on the mid-trim passenger version (Ford Transit Connect Wagon XLT). Also, since its underpinnings are a cargo van, it drives a lot like… a cargo van. They just got a top trim model in (Titanium) so I do plan to go in and see if the seats are any better.

          • Buster

            I did get a chance to sit in the top trim version (the Ford Transit Connect Wagon Titanium), and while nicely appointed inside, for me, the seat was still too narrow. Maybe this is due to the car originating in Europe? For a tall person with a long torso and maybe smaller hips, this car would be a perfect fit I think (especially if you are tired of poking your head out forward like a turtle to see a traffic light through the windshield).

            While there, I also had a chance to sit in the full size version wagon (the Ford Transit 150 Wagon), and that one fit very well (but the vehicle itself “too big” for my taste as it is a full-sized van).

          • Tall Life Post author

            “Poking your head forward like a turtle.” Well put! I can’t stand having to do that. One thing that has helped me a lot with avoiding this is a fresnel lens.

            I’ve sat in the full size Transits too, and quite like them. I dream of someday using one to build a custom class b camper van suitable for my height, for a grand tour of North America.

  • Tall guy in Ohio

    I am only 6’7″ with long legs. I am at the point where I sometimes have difficulty getting in and (especially) out of my Toyota Camry. I know if I am going to remain independent that I will need to get something where I can “step up” into a car as opposed to “sitting down” to get in the car. The only thing that I think will work is going to be a truck. I sat in a Ford Transit, but it felt confining. I don’t need to haul anything or anyone, so I don’t really want a truck or an SUV. If I had to decide today, I’d end up choosing a truck, but I don’t know which model.

    Perhaps you can tell that I am perplexed. Does anyone have suggestions on what type of vehicle might work best?


    • Tall Life Post author

      A vehicle with lots of legroom that you step up into but is relatively small given you don’t need to haul stuff or people. While such a vehicle really ought to exist, I’m doubtful it does. I think you’ll have to either compromise and get a big vehicle (as you suggested), or figure out a technique to more easily get in and out of a lower car (use the overhead grab handle, or maybe even a mobility seat that rotates to help you get in and out). As far as the truck goes, you could search manufacturer specs on legroom to help you get started, or just start visiting dealerships. A Ford Flex might be an interesting option as it also has some decent vertical space for tall people. Hope that helps.

    • I’m The Short One

      Hubby is 6’7” with a long torso. He can fit in a 2015 Toyota Camry XSE with NO SUNROOF. We can’t get the newer Camrys, however because they dramatically reduced the headroom. I drive the 2017 Toyota Highlander Platinum with pano roof and all the guys fit…6’7”, 6’4” and 6’6” (and still growing!) So those may be options if you’re looking for something newer than 2007. Thanks for the great subject!

  • Gira Fetta

    Husband is 6’ 3” with long legs and tall torso. Believe it or not, Buick saved the day for us, with their Encore SUV. It is similar to the Chevrolet Trax inside but more upscale. Because it is an SUV it is easy to get in and out of, even for a relative in his 90s, add to that the generous headroom and leg room and we sit very comfortably, upright and without straining. It also has adjustable lumbar support on the driver’s seat. I wish they had an electric option but it still gets better mileage than many SUVs. We haven’t had any issues at all with our model. The engine we opted for is maybe not for car racing, but is powerful enough for our commuting needs and driving vacations. We are glad we found this car, it fills a need for tall peeps!

    • Tall Life Post author

      I don’t think I’ve sat in an Encore, I’ll have to give it a try. I mirror your wish for electric; I’m ready to pull the trigger on a ford transit connect, but having a hard time mustering buying a new gas car with electric right around the corner…

  • Beau

    My grandson is 17 years old , he is 6’ 11” he wants to drive . We need a car or pickup he can drive with room. Can you help.

  • RogB

    I’m looking for an old van to convert to a mini-camper. It’s not easy to find that vital dimension from floor to ceiling….though seing your advice re transit Connect I’m thinking tht’s a good indicator.
    thanks for your work here
    roger baker

    • Tall Life Post author

      What a coincidence, I’m looking to do this too! Stay tuned for future posts 🙂
      Transit Connect is the best option for this IMO.

  • Manny


    I have started following Tall Dot Life on many topics. I am tall male, around 6’4”/6’5”. But I have the Michael Phelps problem. All my height comes from my torso and neck. My legs are actually not that long. Being that this is the case, I always have struggled finding good cars to drive. I have read a lot of articles including many on Tall Dot Life commenting on cars for tall individuals. My problem is that I also have a bad back and have had one for years. I see a chiropractor regularly. I find that many seats in cars today are horrible on my back and hit me at a bad spot since my torso is so long. The car with the most comfortable seats for my back is a Toyota Four Runner. I have a family member who has let me borrow theirs temporarily. They are great. But the headroom is not good. That sunroof takes away a lot of it. How should I go about finding a vehicle? I need those comfortable seats, but also the headroom. I’ve ordered several different curvature support devices that maybe can help with this. Any input would be appreciated.

    Thank you!

    • Tall Life Post author

      I know what you mean about seat curvatures being all wrong for a long torso. The lumbar support (if there even is one) is too small and too low. And headrests are to low too. There is no database out there that quantifies how good a car seat is for taller people. And despite dozens of cars I have tried in my quest for the ultimate tall person car, I have never found a seat I was totally comfortable in. The solution I use is to place a cushion or even just a wadded up towel behind me to create a higher and larger lumbar support. Longer term though, I’ve got my eyes on a Vario XXL car seat that is supposed to be suitable for tall people. One reader of Tall.Life actually did a guest post demonstrating how he installed one: Best Car Seat for Tall People. Another solution I have imagined is actually removing some of the foam from an existing car seat back, essentially sculpting a better shape. But it would be challenging to redo all the stitching…

      I too have struggled with back pain. I think poorly fitting cars have been partly to blame. Similarly, by getting a better car for tall people (first Honda Element, then Transit Connect), my back has been thanking me. I hope you too can find a solution that helps you. I suggest looking for cars with a higher Vision Line Height. At 6’4″/6’5″, you might not need to go all the way up to a Transit Connect. You could perhaps get by with something like a Subaru Forester. Worth a try.

  • Sect228OsFan

    I’ve always been a fan of pre-2007 Impala’s. I’ve had five of them but finding a good one is getting pretty hard. The redesigned 2007+ ruined them for tall people.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Seems car redesigns always make things worse for tall people, despite the fact that the world population is growing taller! The worst ever redesigned car for tall people has to be the Scion XB. They basically just chopped six inches off the roof!

  • crisilton

    Thanks for this great forum. As a 6’5″ guy I have always needed to chose cars on the basis of head and legroom fit. My 09 Sienna is great for both, I can even wear a cowboy hat! Mine does not have a sunroof, which many have mentioned are headroom hogs. I wish online car sale sites would provide a sunroof delete button to make online shopping for tall drivers easier.
    Our other car is a 13 Passat, which is excellent for headroom and really good for legroom. I am always surprised when I sit as a passenger tho, it seems as tho VW gives the passenger less legroom than the driver, I suppose because of gender stereotypes.

  • scottm_dj

    6’8″ guy knows the best cars for tall people…its a matter of finding one!

    I have a rediculous 38-40″ inseam and by far the car with the most legroom I’ve ever seen is a 2006-2007 Infiniti M35,–which i currently own. The seat goes waaaaay back and the wheel, in addition to telescoping, pivots upwards and out of the way–almost like your driving a bus. Of course, after 2007, Infiniti blew it with the legroom and the fit is not the same–especially the M37 and Q models. Good luck finding a 13 year old car with low miles…

    The other car that works for me is an (2011) Audi S5 because the sitting level is sooo low my legs clear (I have to get the less bolstered seat option convertible myself). Even with the top up I have a good 3 inches to the headliner. The problem is I have bad knees and getting out of a car that low to the ground gets draining in a hurry–there’s no way it could be my daily driver.

    Hope this helps…again, tall drivers should check out that M35 cause not many have legs as long as me. Trying to find *any* SUV (a car i can actually get in and out of on my level) is a nightmare. The closest is a Jeep Grand Cherokee, but that’s well…Chrysler.

  • Joe

    Are there any statistics or info about the distance/space between the pedals? While I am not particularly tall, I have to wear very wide shoes, and some cars have pedals so close together they are very difficult for me to drive. Any suggestions welcome!

    • Tall Life Post author

      Not that I’m aware of… I avoid manual cars given the clutch pedal for this reason, and inadequate legroom too for that matter. I also drive without shoes on to get a bit more legroom and that helps with the tight pedal spacing problem too, but I don’t think this is legal…

  • Tall Bin

    I keep looking for updates to this post on current vehicles. I have been sitting in a few vehicles (Lincoln Aviator, Volvo XC90, trucks). They have improved the leg room and providing seat extenders to support legs is great. VLH is a decent metric for even considering a vehicle. However, what will help me is to understand the field of vision as measured by the angle created from the top of the headrest through the top of the windshield, which is roughly my eye level through the top of the windshield. I noticed in several vehicles it is easy for me to envision how much vision is cut off with a lower roof line. I am still looking for that great luxury vehicle for tall people with easy entrance and egress and for long road trips as I get older. Until then I will just keep looking out my sunroof at the traffic signal! Maybe a good measure is the distance from a traffic signal will I have to stop to clearly see all the lights when I am first in line.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Hey Tall Bin. Yah, I haven’t done another round of the dealer lots in a number of years, I just don’t think enough has changed, and I highly doubt anything out there can surpass the Transit Connect Passenger Wagon (which I’ve had for a year now) for vertical space. Speaking of that, have you tried one? Ingress/egress also can’t be beat.

  • Torso-Man

    Agree with the industry needing to shift the standards. I have searched years to find the right car or SUV — testing every new model about every year. I am 6’4″, but with a long torso leg room is rarely the problem… It is always headroom. I frequently get the salesperson double checking to see if I know how to use the seat or explaining to me how some NFL player or another fits just fine. Anyway, the three that made my list earlier this year were the Chevy Traverse (newer model 2019/2020), Nissan Armada (2019), and the Ford Expedition (2020). The Expedition was the winner, but the catch is I had to find one without a sunroof. With that you can’t get the best seats, but I am happy with the space. With the Traverse being unibody, the seat can adjust down more than the Tahoe.

    • Tall Life Post author

      Torso-Man, that’s a top nickname so far 🙂
      NFL, even NBA, that add of Chris Bosh fitting fine in a Ford Flex infuriated me.

      I will have to check out the models you mentioned at some point. It’s a blessing in disguise that we can’t have sunroof’s, helps us save money. Most people would be astonished to know I would never trade my Transit Connect Passenger wagon for a Ferrari!

      If you ever get a chance, please measure the VLH on top tall cars you come across and let us know here.

    • Torso Tall Wil

      Unfortunately the industry has shifted focus to leg-room, as it is cheaper to modify for. I am barely over 6’1” yet according to the VLH, I need 51” to not be into the roof of a vehicle. Currently looking for a replacement for my 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser. Don’t bother looking, they are discontinued and Toyota will never make anything that height accommodating again.
      The only other vehicle I “fit” into is my 2001 PT Cruiser, but as you know I have no vision above 2-3 feet above the hood of the car.
      So yes, watching these car commercials for “very tall” people, knowing I can’t fit my 6’1” ass into any of these vehicles being shown frustrates me beyond belief.
      Also having a 60” jacket size does not help. Seriously, what do football linemen drive? Because that’s obviously what I need!

  • Shaquille O’Neal

    Hey, so I’m 7’1 and I just needed a lowkey car. My feet are too big for all of these and you know what they say about big feet! The bigger the feet the bigger the pedals exactly.

  • Zee

    Man your research is invaluable thank you so much I would have never thought of the Ford Transit connect .

    and the VLH measurement!

    • Tall Life Post author

      I’m glad it’s standing the test of time! Just wish it ranked at the top of Google so more tall people could benefit… Thanks for letting me know!

  • Eileen

    My husband is 6’8″ and car buying has always involved a painful amount of time and research. Our preference was for a mid-priced 2-row SUV, and we recently purchased a 2022 Hyundai Tucson Limited after being pleasantly surprised at the roominess of the front row seat and other features. The information found on line for leg room for tall men just wasn’t very helpful, so I thought I’d mention vehicles that DID fit. In 2-row SUVs, the Hyundai Tucson, Nissan Murano and Chevy Equinox fit. In 3-row SUVs, the Nissan Pathfinder, Toyota Highlander, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Hyundai Palisade, and Subaru Ascent all fit. We were disappointed that none of the Honda or Mazda SUVs fit. There were some SUVs that might have fit, but we just didn’t get a chance to go back and confirm these: Ford Explorer, Kia Sorento, Hyundai Santa Fe, and Kia Telluride. We did not look at any large SUVs, and our preference was to buy the most compact SUV that fit. The Tucson jumped out at us for it’s combination of reasonable price, exceptional safety features, comfort, and good Consumer Report reliability ratings. This is by no means a comprehensive list, but I hope this will save someone the hours and hours of research that we went through.

  • 6'9" guy

    Well done for this article! I am 6’9″ with a disproportionately tall upper body and it is great to see someone really think this through!

    First time I’ve heard someone analyze why the standard solutions of moving the seat back and keeping it low are not enough! And can actually be harmful. Also, you are so right about the sunroof! And the traffic lights!

    I was very excited when I read that you were introducing a new measure – Vision Line Height. Because people always think that the height of a car is useful to us tall people. But that area from the very top of the the windshield glass to the roof is of absolutely zero use, because it doesn’t add vision height. It might be useful for someone who wants to wear a helmet (like in the G-wagon, which is actually not that great for me), but pointing out to a tall person that a car has a high roof (if it’s not a tall windscreen) is about as useful as the common suggestion: “drive a convertible”.

    But then I saw how you defined it, measuring from the floor of the vehicle??! Why is that??? It should be measured from the top of the sitting part of the seat only! Otherwise the measurement is just as pointless as the roof. Car seats vary greatly in thickness. So VLH as you define it can potentially be extremely misleading for a tall person. I see the term catching on online. But it is useless. I would strongly encourage you to correct this article, so people don’t think they are doing tall people a favor by giving us that measure. They are not.

    Of course VLH as you define it here might help if we want to replace the seat. But that voids the warranty and is very unsafe and takes forever if you don’t get VIP treatment like a basketball player. There are also very few places that can “pimp your ride” like that competently.

    Please correct this, and you will have done tall people a great service. Otherwise, you will only have obfuscated the issue.

    P.S. Do you know which cars happen to have the tallest seat-top-to-top-of-windscreen VLH?

    • Tall Life Post author

      I agree there are flaws with VLH. But it closely correlates with the best vehicles for tall people. For instance, the Transit Connect, Honda Element, original Scion XB all are/were notoriously great for tall people and are at the top for VLH. And it is an extremely easy measurement to take, all you need it a tape measure.