These are the Cars you Think are Just too Damn Small

2022-06-07 07:18:05 By : Mr. Carl Bi

If you spend your days behind the wheel of something small and cute, like the Fiat 500 , there’s a good chance you understand the limitations of a diminutive daily driver. Clearly, nobody is buying a car like this and expecting to transport a family of five, plus dogs, plus luggage, on the regular.

But that doesn’t mean that we can’t wish some of these adorable city cars had a little more space. Heck, we can even hope for a bit more legroom in any car. So with that in mind, we turned to you and asked what cars you think are just too damn small .

“I was hopeful it would be a good replacement for my aging Toyota Matrix XR. Not even close. I could have been okay with a smaller cargo area if the backseat wasn’t so horribly cramped and the steeper raked windshield didn’t make me feel so claustrophobic. It doesn’t have enough power to be a hot hatch, it’s lukewarm at best.”

It might be the smallest Toyota you can buy in the U.S. today, but it sounds like the Corolla hatch could do with a little more legroom in the back.

“The coupe version of the Alfa Romeo 4C. I think it was designed for skinny Italians as the seats did not go back far enough, and were not wide enough.”

Premiered at the 2013 Geneva Motorshow, the 4C is a stunning car . But it might be a case of style over substance, as it sounds like most average Americans might struggle to fit behind the wheel.

Suggested by: Jeff Briggs (Facebook)

“Tough question. For me – the real issue is what car is too small for what it’s marketed to do, because I can’t think of a single car out there that’s just inherently ‘too small’. At least not in the North American market.

“And in that vein, I suppose I’d suggest the Chevy Trax – it’s supposed to be, at least nominally, a utility vehicle of some sort, and yet rear storage capacity with the seats up is something like 130 liters less than the Corolla wagon (which is not a big vehicle.)“

Nobody here is claiming that the Chevrolet Trax is small . But when it’s being outclassed by a Corolla in the practicality stakes, you have to wonder what GM did with all the space it should have?

“This thing is shockingly cramped, even for its size, and its cargo space is basically zero with the seats up. I sometimes feel that ‘space’ has been thrown out of the luxury/comfort equation for a while now, but this one takes the cake.”

In the UK, this car was advertised by pint-sized pop princess Kylie Minogue . So it’s not a car I was ever expecting to come with oodles of legroom.

Suggested by: @El_Grump0 (Twitter)

“Damn near any car when have to put a rear-facing car seat in the back.

“Dishonorable mention for such goes to my old Juke. With a carseat in, there’s nowhere for my spouse, no room behind me as I had legs, and ditto for the front seat.

“It applies to a lot of cars, just not good space utilization.”

Another suggestion where it comes down to how the space has been used, rather than the lack of space in the car.

“I feel awful saying this but whoever designed the current Camaro didn’t think people taller than 6’1” exist.”

Historically, dimensions for determining the average size of a person , and therefore the average amount of space needed in a car, came from military records. So I guess when they were designing the current Camaro the average height of a soldier fell far below 6’1”.

Suggested by: Dave Ricci (Facebook)

“The Panther platform. I had a CV and a MGM and the actual interior is so small for how long the car is. Id gladly give up some of the enormous trunk and engine bay space for more interior room, especially in the back seat.”

The Ford Panther Platform ran across three generations that covered 33 years. The platform underpinned the Crown Vic , which is known the world over as the American cab or cop car – two vehicles that would probably require a fair amount of space inside.

“My sis had one just like this, same color and all.

“I’m 6’2” and quite literally would have to open the sunroof and have the top of my head out the roof to drive it.”

The S-Series was a line of compact cars produced by Saturn from 1990 until 2002.

Suggested by: @Mike_M_Klotz (Twitter)

“As always Miata is the answer. Literally scared to drive them on the road with these huge trucks and SUVs.”

This is a take that I’m sure our own Steve DaSilva can wholeheartedly agree with.

“For some reason, Mazda seems to hate rear passengers. Only the Mazda Mazda6 and CX-9 seem to have decent passenger space behind the front seats.

“I tried a Mazda3's back seats once while I was looking at another car on the dealer lot. I’m around average height, and I had to squeeze into the backseat. My knees were rubbing the back of the front seats. I hadn’t felt that cramped in the back seats since I rode in the back of my sister’s friend’s 1989 Ford Escort coupe.

“I also tried a Mazda CX-5 at the same lot. Same deal. It was very cramped for what should be a compact SUV.

“Offhand, one reason I’d say that Mazda doesn’t sell more cars is because most of them aren’t designed for the way buyers want to use them. If you can only buy one car, you want to at least look at utility, even if you don’t use it all the time.”

Sure, the average car occupancy might be just 1.5 people per vehicle here in the U.S., but that doesn’t mean those back seats should be forgotten altogether.

“Surprisingly the Kia Stinger and K5. My head hits the headliner on the door side when the seating position is moved up high. I’m not super tall at 5'10". Feels very claustrophobic. My smaller Fiesta ST doesn’t even have this problem. Kia must have a very low roof line design.”

Well I’ve got good news if you think the Stinger is too small to function, its days might now be numbered .

Suggested by: Tony Ng (Facebook)

“I’m only 5'8 (albeit mostly torso), and I find the Alfa Giulia too cramped with the sunroof (which they all have the sunroof).

“Even if they get ridiculously cheap in a few years, I’d have to pass because I don’t fit. Although, I’ve sat in one Quattrofolgio and that was fine – I don’t know if it’s because it didn’t have the roof, or they mount the seat lower (or the base is thinner), but I guess being forced to hold out for the best Giulia at least makes up for it.”

Another allegation of Alfa being stingy with its space.

“Chevy Spark. It’s great at fitting in tight spaces, but I feel like that one guy from the Simpsons whenever I have to drive my wife’s car.”

The Chevrolet Spark is one of the smallest cars you can buy in America right now. The current model measures just 143.1 inches.

Suggested by: Nils Fierro (Facebook)

“The last gen Ford Taurus fits ‘big on the outside (almost comically so in some proportions), small on the inside’ perfectly.”

File this one away with the Crown Vic cop car as a vehicle you’d expect to have more room inside.

“Scion IQ. Rear headrests are on the rear glass.”

You call it the Scion IQ, I call it the Aton Martin Cygnet . Whatever you choose, it’s still too damn small.

Suggested by: Jason Bertrand (Facebook)

“I don’t think almost any of the truly small cars fit that, because they are meant to be small. No one is buying a 500 or Smart thinking they’ll be hauling around a soccer team.

“That’s why the answer is every subcompact CUV. They’re fattys on stilts that only have space vertically, but none side to side or front to back. So cars like the HRV, Encore, Trax, and CHR all fit as being too damn small. Most of them don’t even break 30 mpg, so you get a small car with no space, terrible handling, and not-great gas mileage just to sit high (but still have no usable back seat).”

Honda’s subcompact utility vehicle, alongside stablemates from Chevrolet and Toyota, fall under the “what happened to all that space” marker.

“I rented one a couple years ago. It was pleasant to drive and had a nice interior, but there was no escaping the fact that it was smaller than more pedestrian compact sedans (e.g., Elantra, Jetta).

“If I were in the market for a ‘premium’ compact sedan I’d get a Jetta GLI.”

At 174 inches long, the A Class is by no means a big car. But it could maybe do with a little more cabin space here and there.

Suggested by: Brian Nickel (Facebook)

“OK, hear me out: A Dodge Durango.

“When I was looking to replace my Mazda6, I was looking for something with room behind the driver. At 6'3" and 300+ pounds, I need the space. I got into the Durango, and set myself in a comfortable driving position. Then I reached back to see how much room was behind me. There was about 3 inches. Not enough space for a car seat, and certainly not enough space for full-sized human.

“My theory is that the 3rd row sucks up all of the space in the gigantic interior. If the back seats could go all of the way back, there would be a ton of room! But no, it HAS to have a third row.

“Oddly enough, in my Wife’s 2014 Sienna, when I put the seat all the way back, there is about a foot of knee room. I wish people would think about that when they buy a Canyonero ‘because I need the space’.”

In our experience, any response that starts “OK, hear me out ” is usually about to be a wrong answer. Judge for yourself.

“The Smart ForTwo. A buddy had one, and took me for a ride. Every time I smiled, my teeth touched the windshield. I sneezed and it blew the windshield out. I didn’t have room to change my mind.

“The brakes failed, so I held my baseball cap out of the window, backwards, and it came to a screeching halt. My wife called and asked if I could pick up two loaves of bread, so my buddy said okay. I got back home and she told me she had said two loaves. I had to explain that there was only room for one loaf, with both me and my buddy in the car.

“Thank you, thank you. Don’t forget to try the veal, and tip the waiter. I’ll be here all week!”

This was a fun answer , thanks.

Suggested by: Opa Karl (Facebook)