Best (and worst) small cars for tall drivers 2019

Tall drivers can often feel cramped in small cars, so what should you choose if you want a cheap, city-friendly hatchback that's spacious enough for six-footers?...

Best (and worst) small cars for tall drivers 2019

Seat Ibiza hatchback

City cars and small hatchbacks combine low running costs with the sort of dinky proportions that make them easy to drive and park in town. However, small on the outside often means cramped on the inside, so if you're more than six feet tall, which small cars and city cars are spacious enough to let you get comfortable?

Below, we count down the models that put the Tardis to shame while also providing all the equipment and comfort that buyers can expect these days. Plus, we name the ones that are best avoided if you're on the tall side.

Best small cars for tall people

kia Picanto

10. Kia Picanto

You might think that the Picanto's small dimensions mean that taller drivers will struggle for space, but in fact two tall adults will find they have plenty of head and leg room.

Our favourite version: 1.25 3

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Best small cars for tall people

Kia Picanto interior

10. Kia Picanto

Rear space is fairly good, too, although the Volkswagen Up offers more still. Go for our recommended 3 trim and you get plenty of equipment, including a 7.0in infotainment touchscreen with sat-nav.

Our favourite version: 1.25 3

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Best small cars for tall people

Hyundai i10

9. Hyundai i10

The i10 is one of our favourite city cars, and like its fellow Korean model, the Kia Picanto, it's well suited to sweeping around tight city streets.

Our favourite version: 1.2 SE Premium

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Best small cars for tall people

Hyundai i10 interior

9. Hyundai i10

There's plenty of room in the front for taller drivers, and no city car offers more space for rear passengers than the i10. Its rear doors also open extra wide, making getting in and out easier than in some rivals.

Our favourite version: 1.2 SE Premium

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Best small cars for tall people

Kia Rio

8. Kia Rio

Look back at the history of the Kia Rio and you’ll find a car that's always offered plenty of room at a very keen price. The latest version continues that tradition. downsides.

Our favourite version: 1.0 T-GDi 99 2

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Best small cars for tall people

Kia Rio interior

8. Kia Rio

Its driver’s seat has plenty of adjustment, too, both forward and backwards and up and down, so it's only the Rio's lumpy ride and so-so handling that are the downsides.

Our favourite version: 1.0 T-GDi 99 2

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Best small cars for tall people

Hyundai i20

7. Hyundai i20

The Hyundai i20 doesn't just give the driver lots of head and leg room; it's also wider than most small cars, so there's no chance of you banging elbows with your front passenger.

Our favourite version: 1.0 T-GDi 100 Turbo Edition

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Best small cars for tall people

Hyundai i20 interior

7. Hyundai i20

As a bonus, rear space is on a par with that in some family cars, while the petrol engines are impressively refined and standard equipment is generous. Less impressive is the choppy ride and slow, overly heavy steering.

Our favourite version: 1.0 T-GDi 100 Turbo Edition

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Best small cars for tall people

Skoda Fabia

6. Skoda Fabia

The Skoda Fabia is a brilliant all-rounder. It's not only agile and easy to drive in town but is also more comfortable and refined at motorway speeds than many of its rivals. The Fabia has a solidly built interior and an impressive array of safety kit.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Skoda Fabia interior

6. Skoda Fabia

It's a very practical choice, too, with space for four adults, a large, well-shaped boot and a hugely adjustable driving position that offers all the head and leg room you're likely to need.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Honda Jazz

5. Honda Jazz

The Honda Jazz walks a fine line between being a small car and an MPV, but thankfully it's a successful mixture. There's masses of room inside the Jazz, and Honda's magic seat system ensures that no matter what you need to carry, you'll find a solution.

Our favourite version: 1.5 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Honda Jazz interior

5. Honda Jazz

Carrying four tall adults in comfort is a breeze, although introducing a third tall person onto the rear bench will make everyone feel squashed.

Our favourite version: 1.5 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Ford Fiesta

4. Ford Fiesta

The Ford Fiesta isn’t known for its practicality. And in terms of rear seat space and boot volume, plenty of rivals have it licked. However, if it’s just you and one passenger in the car, it’s extremely comfortable; the steering wheel moves for height and reach and has plenty of range, while the front seats slide back far enough to accommodate the longer-legged and are well bolstered.

Our favourite version: 1.0 Ecoboost 140 ST-Line 5dr

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Best small cars for tall people

Ford Fiesta interior

4. Ford Fiesta

As a bonus, you'll be getting the best-handling small car around. Just don't expect a massive discount from the dealer, because a new Fiesta arrived earlier this year.

Our favourite version: 1.0 Ecoboost 140 ST-Line 5dr

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Best small cars for tall people

Mini hatchback

3. Mini hatchback

If anything, the Mini might seem even more out of place than the Fiesta on a list of spacious small cars. However, while the three-door version doesn't have much rear leg room when the front seats are slid all the way back, the five-door is a lot more practical.

Our favourite version: 5dr 1.5T Cooper Chili Media

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Best small cars for tall people

Mini hatchback interior

3. Mini hatchback

What's more, both have supportive seats and loads of head and leg room in the front, even if the driving position isn't perfect, due to offset pedals. The Mini is also good to drive and smart inside.

Our favourite version: 5dr 1.5T Cooper Chili Media

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Best small cars for tall people

Volkswagen Polo

2. Volkswagen Polo

The latest Polo is one of the most spacious small cars around, and two tall adults can sit comfortably in the front. It's a similar story in the rear, where two six-footers will find that their knees don't touch the backs of the seats in front.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Volkswagen Polo interior

2. Volkswagen Polo

Add in the fact that the Polo is good to drive and quiet and it's easy to see why Volkswagen's small car is so recommendable.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 SE

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Best small cars for tall people

Seat Ibiza

1. Seat Ibiza

The Ibiza is our favourite small car at the moment, thanks to its winning combination of interior space, a strong range of petrol engines and a good driving style.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 FR

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Best small cars for tall people

Seat Ibiza interior

1. Seat Ibiza

If you're a tall driver, you'll find that you can sit anywhere in the Ibiza and still have plenty of room, and its boot is among the biggest in this class. Team our recommended 1.0 TSI 95 engine with FR specification for the best experience.

Our favourite version: 1.0 TSI 95 FR

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Worst cars for tall drivers

Fiat 500

Fiat 500

The Fiat 500, like the Mini, plays the retro theme to good effect and its quirky looks have found a strong following. It’s also a fair chunk cheaper than the Mini. However, it isn't nearly as good to drive and, if you're more than six feet tall, you might find getting comfortable a tall order. The steering wheel only moves up and down (not in and out), the driver’s seat doesn’t go back very far and the pedal area is cramped.

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Vauxhall Adam

Vauxhall Adam

Vauxhall Adam

Vauxhall's answer to the Fiat 500 is the stylish little Adam. Unfortunately, this model is even more flawed when it comes to comfort, because it's tighter for the driver and rear passengers. Firm suspension and high prices also count against it. At least the Adam has a smart interior and plenty of personalisation options.

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