Jun
27

BMW 5-Series

Also see: Best Cars for Tall Drivers (non-premium)

Also see: Three Good Cars for Big Guys

While luxury cars tend to offer more comfortable front seats than non-premium cars do—not to mention all kinds of power adjustments—they don’t necessarily offer more room. In fact, with sleek styling that’s meant to woo well-to-do customers, headroom is often more limiting in luxo vehicles.

That’s ironic, since numerous studies have shown that tall people tend to be more successful in their careers—meaning they’re the folks the luxury automakers should be catering to!

Here’s another reason for 6-plus-footers to be frustrated: Some luxury cars come standard with a power sunroof, and on such cars the sunroof housing cuts deeply into headroom. Then there’s the Lexus issue. Although that Japanese luxury automaker provides an exceptional amount of legroom in their cars, headroom on their sedans, coupes, and convertibles tends to be in short supply.

Below is our list of luxury (aka premium) cars that best accommodate tall drivers. For each featured vehicle, we provide the headroom and maximum legroom (in inches). Also included is “Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating,” as determined by the Consumer Guide Automotive editors who test drove the vehicles. “Driver Seating” weighs such factors as a tilt, telescopic, and/or power steering wheel; front-seat (power) adjustment; and visibility.

Just remember: Like cars, people come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. During your test drive, make sure you feel comfortable in the driver seat. It’s where you’ll spend much of your life in the years ahead.

Premium Compact Cars

2014 Audi A4/S4
Front Headroom: 40.0
Front Legroom:
41.3
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating: 7
Notable: Headroom is better than in the other Audis in this class (A3 and Allroad), but the standard sunroof (and thus sunroof housing) could lead to problems for the very tall.

2013 BMW 3-Series Sedan
Front Headroom:
40.3
Front Legroom:
42.0
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
Terrific space on the 328i, but the 335i gets a standard sunroof (cutting into headroom) and the Sport Line’s bucket seats have pronounced side bolsters that some drivers may find uncomfortable.

2014 Cadillac ATS
Front Headroom:
38.6
Front Legroom:
42.5
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
7
Notable:
Great legroom, though door openings are kind of small.

 

Premium Midsize Cars

2013 BMW 5-Series
Front Headroom:
40.5
Front Legroom:
41.4
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
Comfortable and spacious for adults of nearly every shape and size.

2013 Infiniti M35h/M37/M56
Front Headroom:
39.1
Front Legroom:
44.4
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
Maximum front legroom is best in class.

2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Front Headroom:
38.2
Front Legroom:
41.3
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
Sedans offer ample head and legroom, even for taller drivers, and the seats are comfortable and supportive. We have not tested the coupe or convertible, but they do offer more than 2 inches more headroom than the sedan.

2014 Volvo S60
Front Headroom:
38.3
Front Legroom:
41.9
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
The seats have prominent side bolsters that provide lateral support without being confining.

2014 Volvo XC70
Front Headroom:
38.8
Front Legroom:
41.9
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
8
Notable:
Thin roof pillars and large glass areas combine for excellent all-around visibility.

 3 Good Cars for Really Big Guys

Premium Large Cars

2014 BMW 7-Series
Front Headroom:
40.6
Front Legroom:
41.3
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
9
Notable:
Headroom is best in class. Moving up one trim level to the 750i rewards front-seat passengers with heated 20-way power multicontour front seats.

2014 Cadillac XTS
Front Headroom:
40.1
Front Legroom:
42.8
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
9
Notable:
Both headroom and legroom approach those of the class leaders, and getting through the large doors is a breeze.

2014 Hyundai Equus
Front Headroom:
38.7
Front Legroom:
45.1
CG Rating for Room/Comfort/Driver Seating:
N/A
Notable:
Maximum front legroom is by far the best in class.

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