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Best cars for tall drivers - cars with head and legroom

If you're someone who's taller than the average person, then choosing a car can often be a tricky task

Big man in a small Fiat 500

From having to bend down at sinks to trying to find a bed that's long enough, being tall is not all it’s cracked up to be.

It can also be a real disadvantage when you're buying a car, where getting enough legroom or headroom can be a problem. 

Here are some tips to help you find the right car if your height starts with a six.

How to choose a car if you’re tall

Finding a car that you can fit in isn’t always straightforward when you’re a tall driver. Sure, SUVs and people carriers tend to be fine, but convertibles and sports cars? Not so much. 

The good news is that there are lots of cars on sale that you’ll fit into – and some of them might even surprise you.

One tip is to buy a car without a sunroof that runs the full length of the car (often called a panoramic sunroof). This might sound counter-intuitive, because a sunroof should increase headroom, right? In reality, the motors and other components that make it work take up space and reduce headroom in most cars – unless you're in a Range Rover, which has a tall ceiling regardless.

When doing the research for your next car, look to see if a manufacturer quotes headroom dimensions. Not all of them do, and they can be a bit hit or miss, but it could be useful if the cars you’re interested in have published official figures.

Finally, the key thing is to spend time sitting in the cars you’re interested in, adjusting the seat and steering wheel. You should also try and take the car out for a test drive. The longer you can have the car the better, because you want to be absolutely sure that you can sit in the car comfortably for hours, if necessary. 

Our top five tall drivers’ cars:

The surprise: Volkswagen Polo 

Volkswagen Polo

The Polo is a small car, but it's not as small as it used to be, thanks to all the crash impact protection needed these days.

I now boasts impressive headroom (1019mm, or 981mm with the sunroof), which is actually more than a Land Rover Discovery.

Most trim levels have a fully adjustable driver’s seat and a steering wheel that moves up and down and in and out.

As it's a used Volkswagen, the quality of the materials in the cabin is finished to a very high standard. There's lots of equipment, too, so it should be the right fit in more ways than one.

The compact SUV: Volvo XC40

Volvo XC40 interior

Volvo builds cars with fabulous cabins, and the XC40 is a good example of that.

The design is spot on. It's an update on the classic Scandinavian minimalist vibe, but in a car and using high-quality materials. There’s also the latest tech, with a big touchscreen in the middle of the dashboard and full smartphone integration.

The interior of the XC40 is also highly practical, with 1030mm headroom and 1040mm legroom in the front.

It's clearly designed with tall, Swedish drivers in mind. There’s also a maximum of 994mm of headroom and 917mm of legroom in the rear, so even your six-footer passengers will be in good hands.

The estate: Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain, 2016

Estate cars often have useful amounts of interior space, as well as capacious boots. This is even more true in large estates such as the Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

With 1061mm of headroom in the front, the E-Class Estate has plenty of room for taller drivers, while there’s also lots of movement in the steering wheel to get it in the right position. 

The seats are also very comfortable, while the main controls and touchscreen are also well within reach for all drivers, not just tall ones.

The people carrier: Citroen Berlingo

Citroën Berlingo

If you want a car with enough headroom, one that's based on a van is almost guaranteed to supply it. The Citroën Berlingo is a classic example. 

This is one of the most practical cars you can buy, and it's a people carrier with either five or seven seats.

There are numerous really useful storage and stowage options, with a total of 186 litres of storage space designed for everyday living, including 92 litres in the airline-style Modutop® roof bins.

Yes, this is a car so tall it can have roof bin, which gives you an idea of just how tall it is.

The large SUV: Audi Q7

Audi Q7

If you can’t fit in the driver’s seat of a large SUV, you’re destined to be chauffeured around in stretch limos for the rest of your life.

But we think you'll be fine in the Audi Q7 because it has one of the largest headroom dimensions of all the cars in its class, with an available 1071mm.

Not only will you enjoy a hugely spacious cabin, you’ll also be cosseted by the seats, which are well padded but also very supportive.

The second row in this seven-seater also has 1016mm of headroom, so adults won’t feel cramped in the back. 

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