Best cars for tall people

From lofty city cars to upright SUVs, here are eight of the best cars for tall people - with all the space you could possibly need

Gavin Braithwaite-Smith
Jun 30, 2020

Are you sitting comfortably? If the answer is no, you could be driving the wrong car. Maybe you bang your head on the roof every time you get in or hit a particularly big bump when you are driving. Or you're struggling to find sufficient room for your legs or you receive constant complaints from those crammed into the rear seats.

Either way, finding a car suitable for tall people can be a real pain in the neck - not to mention a pain in the leg, the ankle, arm, head. Hence, we've done the hard work so you can be confident you can fit in our eight choices - from small but spacious city cars to high-riding SUVs.

When you're hunting for a new car, it's worth gauging whether there's enough space and adjustment in the driver's seat to get comfy if you're particularly tall. One quick way to do this is to focus on cars that offer 'reach' and 'rake' steering wheel adjustment.

Some cars have steering wheels that only move in and out (reach) or up and down (rake), while others can be adjusted for both dimensions. Choosing a car where both can be adjusted should improve your chances of finding a suitable driving position. 

Maybe you’re considering a car for a growing family. In this case, check that the rear seats offer enough headroom and legroom for the tallest members of your family. If you're tall, too, think about whether they'll have enough leg room, even if they have to sit behind you.

To help you on your way, we’ve selected eight cars that offer sufficient head and legroom for tall people. We’ve rounded up everything from budget city cars to spacious SUVs, with prices to suit all pockets. So, even if you’re not sitting comfortably - yet - we shall begin.

Best cars for tall drivers

1. Suzuki Ignis

Thanks to its tall and upright stance, the little Suzuki Ignis is great for even the tallest of drivers. What’s more, all Ignis models except the entry-level SZ3 feature a sliding rear seat that allows you to choose between extra legroom or a larger boot.

If you’re a fan of the bold exterior styling, you’ll love the adventurous interior, which is quite unlike anything else in the city car segment. It may not feel like the most luxurious car in the world inside, but because the Ignis is so well equipped - not to mention, surprisingly good to drive - you’ll forgive this minor indiscretion.

The mid-spec SZ-T is the range sweet spot, offering 16-inch alloy wheels, air-conditioning, a rear parking camera, a digital display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The flagship SZ5 offers big car levels of kit for a small car price, plus the option of four-wheel drive. BuyaCar prices start from less than £8,000 - you won’t find a more charming car - with lots of space - for less money.

SUZUKI IGNIS BUYERS' GUIDE

2. Nissan Note

The Nissan Note lacks the character and charm of the Suzuki Ignis, but it’s one of the most practical small cars you can buy. Again, the tall, upright and boxy dimensions create a cabin that’s high on space and practicality.

On many models, the rear seats slide backwards and forwards to deliver a choice of a large boot or maximum rear legroom. If you choose the latter, the Note offers more rear space than some cars from the class above. Perfect if you need lots of space inside, but don't want your car to take up too much space on the road.

Crucially, there’s loads of headroom for the driver and all passengers, while the tall stance makes it easy to enter and exit the car. Best of all, Nissan Note prices start from around £110 per month.

NISSAN NOTE BUYERS' GUIDE

3. Volkswagen Tiguan

Volkswagen Tiguan

The Volkswagen Tiguan is one of the most popular SUVs in Europe. The key to its popularity is that it feels like a stretched Volkswagen Golf on stilts. It’s also pretty good for tall people due to its extra height.

Front headroom of 1,049mm, and 1,012mm in the rear, means that the Tiguan offers more space for your head than most cars in this class. It’s worth noting that fitting a sunroof eats into the headroom, so you might need to remove your hat before entering the car. Or simply find a model that does without a sunroof.

For this reason, we’d avoid the SEL and R-Line Tech models, as a panoramic sunroof is fitted as standard. In what appears to be a theme for this feature, the rear seats slide backwards and forwards by up to 170mm to increase rear legroom or boot space.

VOLKSWAGEN TIGUAN BUYERS' GUIDE

4. Ford Kuga

The Ford Kuga dates back to 2012, although a 2017 facelift keeps it relevant in the face of fierce competition. A new and improved Kuga may have arrived in 2020, but the success of the outgoing version means there’s a ready supply of used examples to choose from. And all for surprisingly low monthly payments.

In truth, although the 2017 update improved the styling and added some new technology, the earlier model is just as appealing. You’ll also save yourself £3,000 - or around £25 per month - by opting for the pre-facelift Kuga.

In both cases, the Kuga is taller than most of its rivals, while a long wheelbase - the distance between front and rear wheels - creates a roomy cabin. The amount of front and rear headroom is excellent, making the Kuga a good SUV for tall people.

FORD KUGA BUYERS' GUIDE

5. Hyundai i30

The previous-generation Hyundai i30 isn’t the last word in excitement, but it offers more front headroom than most family hatchbacks, making it an ideal choice for tall people. Indeed, there’s 30mm more headroom in the front than you’ll find in the earlier i30.

This version of the i30 was built between 2013 and 2017, so some cars will still be covered by Hyundai’s excellent five-year/unlimited mileage warranty for some time to come. Because they lost value quickly when new, you can bag a great deal on the BuyaCar website.

In the back, there’s room for three adults, and although the amount of headroom isn’t class-leading, only the tallest of passengers will have cause for complaint. Interestingly, the current i30, introduced in 2017, offers less space for rear seat passengers, especially if the driver has their seat pushed back.

HYUNDAI i30 BUYERS' GUIDE

6. Mazda CX-5

With 1,018mm of front headroom, the previous-generation Mazda CX-5 offers more hat space than most family SUVs of this size. It also offers a car-like driving experience, so it’s the SUV you should buy if you want something that’s fun to drive.

The interior space didn’t come at the expense of luggage capacity, with the boot offering a class-leading 503 litres of space, which is 100 litres more than you’ll find in the aforementioned Ford Kuga.

So what’s the catch? Well, the interior is a bit dull and can’t live up to the promise of the exterior styling. It’s also an SUV in demand, so grabbing a bargain might be tricky. That said, BuyaCar can offer 15-plate cars for around £10,000.

Opt for PCP finance and this car's high demand should ensure low monthly payments, as it should still be worth a lot at the end of the contract (PCP monthly payments cover the difference between a car's value at the start of the contract and what it's expected to be worth when the contract ends).

MAZDA CX-5 BUYERS' GUIDE

7. Skoda Octavia

The chances are you’ve returned from a night out on the town in a Skoda Octavia taxi. Did you complain about the amount of headroom in the back? Precisely. Anyway, if you were suffering from the effects of a dodgy doner kebab you shouldn’t have eaten and can't quite remember, take our word for it; the Octavia offers plenty of room, whether you're behind the wheel or in the back.

It’s best to think of the Skoda Octavia as a supersized Volkswagen Golf, as it features a cavernous cabin, a large luggage area and more rear headroom than many cars in this class. We’d struggle to think why you need more space, but if you do, the larger Skoda Superb offers limo-like levels of rear legroom.

You can get a 65-place Octavia for less than £150 per month on a four-year PCP finance deal, which might be less than your monthly spend on dodgy doner kebabs. Think of your wallet - not to mention your waistline.

SKODA OCTAVIA BUYERS' GUIDE

8. Volvo XC60

XC60 SE Lux

The Volvo XC60 offers more front headroom than the majority of its rivals, so if you're tall and looking for a car that you'll be comfortable driving, this could be it. It’s fine for those in the back, too, but if your children are growing up rapidly and inherited your tall gene, it may not be long before they start craving a little more headroom.

We’re focusing on the previous-generation Volvo XC60, which was one of the safest cars in the world when it was launched in 2008. A series of tweaks and upgrades ensured that the XC60 remained in production for nearly a decade.

Even the entry-level SE model is loaded with standard kit, so it’s the trim level to choose if you’re wearing your sensible hat. Thanks to the amount of headroom, you can even wear your sensible hat when driving. That’s assuming you’re not wearing a bearskin or a hennin. Prices start from less than £13,000 for a 15-plate XC60, which represents excellent value for money - and that’s not a tall story.

VOLVO XC60 BUYERS' GUIDE

 

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