Which new sports cars fit tall drivers? Here are 10 to consider.

J.A.
By J.A. Ackley
Apr 3, 2024 | Tall people | Posted in Buyer's Guides , Features | Never miss an article

Photography Credit: David S. Wallens

Ever feel that the sports car world is built for the jockey types rather than the jock types? You’re not alone. However, there are still some solid choices for sporty vehicles that can accommodate the taller set, especially if you like to wear a helmet and do motorsport things.

Let’s start with a general rule of thumb: ditch the power seats and sunroofs. The former raises the seat higher and the latter lowers the roof. Forget about them. You’ll probably save weight, too.

Also remember that headroom numbers can be deceptive. Just because you can fit your head inside it doesn’t mean you can see out the windshield well. Use headroom numbers as more of a guide rather than a hard rule.

So, who’s our test subject for this somewhat subjective test. Yours truly. I stand at 6-foot-4. My pants’ inseam is 34 inches and my arm length for shirts is 36/37. Ultimately, there’s more torso than legs for me. While 6-foot-4 may not seem exceptionally tall, especially given today’s NBA players and MLB pitchers, it’s still a half-foot above the average U.S. man standing at 5-foot-9.

The recent New York International Auto Show gave us ample opportunity to try out many of the popular sports cars. Add to that our experience beyond the show and we’ll delve into 10 new sports cars that fit us taller folks well.

[New York Auto Show: Make sure you check out the basement]

10. Ford Mustang GT

Photography courtesy Ford

Photography courtesy Ford

  • Headroom: 37.6 inches
  • Legroom: 44.5 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:19.92 (2024 Dark Horse model)
  • Price (starting): $41,690

Yes, the Mustang has the least amount of stated headroom on this list–but it also boasts the most legroom, which makes it particularly attractive for the leggy set. It seems like every Mustang on display or in the press fleet uses power seats. This makes it tighter than the other cars we recommend, but we can imagine that manual seats will up the headroom. Too bad power seats come standard on the Dark Horse.

9. Volkswagen Golf R

Photography courtesy Volkswagen

Photography courtesy Volkswagen

  • Headroom: 38.5 inches
  • Legroom: 41.2 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:21.37 (2023 model)
  • Price (starting): $45,665

Unfortunately, the standard power seats and sunroof make this less spacious than it could be. For example, our Mk7 Golf GTI with manual seats offers ample headroom. However, the Golf R does provide adequate space, but a more barebones version would be welcomed, both from a headroom and performance perspective.

8. Honda Civic Type R

Photography courtesy Honda

Photography courtesy Honda

  • Headroom: 39.3 inches
  • Legroom: 42.3 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:20.62 (2023 model)
  • Price (starting): $44,795

Yes, the Civic has gotten bigger over the years, but the earlier Civics weren’t short on headroom, either. This version comes with manual seats, but we still feel like we sit up higher than some of the cars the Type R competes against.

7. Subaru WRX

Photography courtesy Subaru

Photography courtesy Subaru

  • Headroom: 39.8 inches
  • Legroom: 43.1 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:24.44 (2023 model)
  • Price (starting): $32,735

For the taller folks, the BRZ/GR86 just isn’t in the cards, as far as interior space. Fortunately, if you love Subies, the WRX exists. The lanky 6-foot-2 Travis Pastrana competes with one in rally racing. The example we tested wasn’t particularly quick, but the new WRX TR is a more performance-oriented model. The weight savings and other handling mods should make the TR a bit nimbler than the example we tracked.

6. Mini Hardtop 2 Door John Cooper Works

Photography courtesy Mini

Photography courtesy Mini

  • Headroom: 40.3 inches
  • Legroom: 41.4 inches
  • Track Test Time: TBD
  • Price (starting): $35,400

They may call them Mini, but they’re large on the inside, especially height-wise. The playful nature of a Mini also makes them a fun drive, especially with a JCW edition. Mini recently revealed a new generation of Hardtop, but a JCW version has not been announced yet.

5. Hyundai Ioniq 5 N

Photography courtesy Hyundai

Photography courtesy Hyundai

  • Headroom: 39.8 inches
  • Legroom: 41.7 inches
  • Track Test Time: TBD
  • Price (starting): $66,100

Go for the N, not just because of the sporty stuff, but because of the room. Hyundai claims the N version has the same amount of headroom as the standard model, but it felt roomier nevertheless. It might be because it has more rear legroom–that's the only stated difference. The N version comes without a sunroof and uses manual seats, unlike the standard model. Plus, the 641 horsepower should get your attention, too, regardless of your size.

4. Toyota GR Corolla

Photography courtesy Toyota

Photography courtesy Toyota

  • Headroom: 38.4 inches
  • Legroom: 42.0 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:21.57 (2023 Circuit Edition)
  • Price (starting): $36,500

Because this car is quite utilitarian, it doesn’t come with the all the bells and whistles. That’s a good thing, because it comes in the name of speed. It also makes the inside much roomier.

3. Hyundai Elantra N

Photography courtesy Hyundai

Photography courtesy Hyundai

  • Headroom: 40.6 inches
  • Legroom: 42.3 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:22.08 (2023 model)
  • Price (starting): $32,900

Without the sunroof, it’s quite spacious. The four-door can also comfortably haul your kiddos, doggos or whatever you like to carry in the back of a vehicle. Performance-wise, this will give an E46 M3 a run for its money.

2. Toyota GR Supra

Photography courtesy Toyota

Photography courtesy Toyota

  • Headroom: 38.3 inches
  • Legroom: 42.2 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:17.85 (2023 with manual)
  • Price (starting): $46,440

This car’s like a TARDIS. It looks like it shouldn’t be big inside, but it is. That headroom number is also incredibly deceptive. If you can overcome the required gymnastics of getting in and out of the Supra, you’ll be rewarded with a roomy cockpit and quite the fast car. Better sign up for yoga now.

1. BMW M2

Photography courtesy BMW

Photography courtesy BMW

  • Headroom: 39.8 inches
  • Legroom: 41.8 inches
  • Track Test Time: 1:16.39 (2023 model)
  • Price (starting): $63,200

For the most part, German automakers make their cars bigger inside than manufacturers from other countries. The M2 is a good example of that. Plus, it’s just a half second slower than a C8 Corvette at our test track. As an added bonus, you could easily use the M2 to go to work, shop for groceries and give it hell on a track, all in the same day without issue. Other BMWs, such as the M3 and M4, are also solid in delivering space for taller drivers.

Other Options

Photography by David S. Wallens

Photography by David S. Wallens

Are there other options? Certainly. Don’t consider this a be-all, end-all list. If you’re taller than me, you could also track a performance-oriented pickup truck, crossover or SUV, depending on rules. There are drawbacks to these options, namely weight and additional mods needed for motorsports, but if you’re a bigger person, this might be your only choice.


I have found this to be the best way to exit a Toyota GR Supra. Photo by David S. Wallens.

Do you have other picks? We’d love to hear them, so share them below.

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Comments
Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
4/3/24 11:05 a.m.

Ironic that the Mini made your list.

And yeah, there aren't many graceful ways to get in and out of a Supra, regardless of height. Love your method, though.

SKJSS (formerly Klayfish)
SKJSS (formerly Klayfish) UltimaDork
4/3/24 11:22 a.m.

No 992?  It's got room for very tall people. 

ClearWaterMS
ClearWaterMS Reader
4/3/24 12:02 p.m.

this article should have been titled "the only time M.I.A.T.A; tall people"

J.A. Ackley
J.A. Ackley Senior Editor
4/3/24 12:27 p.m.
SKJSS (formerly Klayfish) said:

No 992?  It's got room for very tall people. 

Believe it or not, I haven't been in a 992, but I bet I'd fit based on my experiences with our 997 and the Taycan. Both have ample room for taller drivers.

bmw88rider
bmw88rider GRM+ Memberand UberDork
4/3/24 1:04 p.m.

In reply to J.A. Ackley :

I know the 997 was nirvana for me overall. Easily the most comfy I have been in a sports car. I wanted to love the Cayman but I needed like an inch in all directions. 

I'm pretty close to you size wise for legs and arms except I have no torso at 6'1. I am all arms and legs. 

Karacticus
Karacticus GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
4/3/24 1:14 p.m.

My experience with the Supra is that if the need isn't urgent, put the helmet on/take the helmet off once you're in the car.

But, you look like grace personified getting in and out relative to when I had the i8.

pimpm3 (Forum Supporter)
pimpm3 (Forum Supporter) UberDork
4/3/24 1:25 p.m.

I am 6'4" with a 34 inch inseam.  I actually fit well in my 23' BRZ even with my helmet on.

dps214
dps214 SuperDork
4/3/24 1:34 p.m.
SKJSS (formerly Klayfish) said:

No 992?  It's got room for very tall people. 

Every porsche since the 986/996 generation. And possibly some of them with the right seats too. My 986 was disappointingly small but I have a friend that's like 6'4 or something that had a 996GT3 for a while.

kevbh
kevbh None
4/3/24 1:39 p.m.

Also at 6'4", I really appreciate this article, and your list jives well with my limited research.  My problem is long legs, which begs the question, how is the leg room figure calculated?  Other magazines I used to read would provide that figure, but the best I could tell it was just made up by each manufacturer and wasn't useful even as a comparison tool.  Now, if you could point me in the right direction to find driving shoes that fit an 11.5 EEEE foot...

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/3/24 1:41 p.m.

FWIW, I bonk my head getting in/out of the Supra, and I ain’t that tall. 

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