Where muse meets whimsy...

Finding A Car For Women Of Size

Two of my customers were having trouble finding new cars that were comfortable, safe and had lots of room for women of size.  They asked me if I would pass on their request for information to our customer via email.  Here are some of the responses I received:


I drive a 2005 Ford 500 and I love it.  It is a full size car with plenty of room.  It was fairly pricey when it was new but should be fairly affordable on the used market.

p.s. They claim that there is enough room in the trunk for eight sets of golf bags and I believe it.


I’m super size but only 5 foot 2 and my Toyota Echo is super.  Don’t need to use the steering wheel mech. even tho’ it does have one adjustment.  Seat belt fits beautifully as passenger and driver without any extensions.  Tight in backseat to sit however.  Huge trunk.  Fun drive.  AND even tho’ I’m short, other taller drivers (5’10”) have said there is still lots of room between top of head and roof.  Hope that helps.


The car that I drive and works for me is the GM Terrain 2010….. it’s more like a compact SUV.  I find it roomy for me, as well as if I have adults in the back seats – good leg room/height for them.  I also like the fact it’s more of a “slide in” helps with my knees…. not low as a car can be, and not high as the van I used to have…  since I too have have the “butt & gut” issue;  it was important for me to find something comfortable & functional too…  Hope this helps…. 


I love my Subaru. While it does not have telescoping steering there is lots of room and the seat belts are long! I have a Forrester. 


 About the car issue, I drive a 2000 Toyota Echo sedan.  I don’t fit in the Corolla or several of their other cars but I do fit in this one and the seat belt is also long enough.  The car is not showing up on their website anymore but may be available used, or the other option is more expensive but the Prius was the same body, just a hybrid.  

I know I fit in very few cars so I hope this helps.


I’m a (very satisfied) member of Modo – the Car Co-op, so I’ve driven  a range of 2003 – 2011 cars. I’ll use my membership to try out even more models. Joining temporarily could be a way to test drive on your own. My deposit to join in 2006 was $500,  100% refundable when I cancel my membership. Probably still similar now. Other costs are based on usage.   Contact Modo at 604-685-1393, or info@modo.coop.

On a personal note, the co-op once upgraded a Mazda at a location I used frequently with a Mini Cooper. One phone call to Modo and the Cooper was re-replaced with a car I could use comfortably. I realise your customers are looking for a car to buy, not share – I just like to shout out for those who treat large people well.
I’ve found the Mazda 5 seats slide back quite far. Not only am I large, I’m stiff, specially in the knees, so I need lots of space for getting out. I like the Pontiac Vibe too.
I’ve found the amount the seat slides back changes from model to model and year to year in the same brand of vehicle. Same with the wheel tilt.
My  favourite in the cars now available near my home is the Nissan Cube. Not the most beautiful vehicle on the road, but tops for accessibility before going up to an SUV or Minivan. Often they’re not The clearance is higher than most other cars’. The driver’s pod is roomy  – I don’t feel like I’m packed in a can. Best, the rear hatch opens on the side like a cupboard door, so no contortions are necessary to load or offload stuff.
I hope this info proves helpful.  Best of luck, 


 I just bought a Nissan Rogue and find it very comfortable.  It is one size down from my previous car which was the Nissan Murano. While I was looking I found the Kia Soul to be very very roomy.  Hope this helps


I LOVE my Honda Element.  They are not making them starting 2012, but Honda’s hold their value and used ones should be very reliable.  The seating in wonderful, lots of room (front and back), moveable steering wheel, plus it is just the right height for me to step into (I’m 5’4″) which makes it much easier to maneuver in and out of.

Bonus, I was able to find a seatbelt extender online.  I can use the regular belt, but I just wanted a little more wiggle room so that I could lean forward without undoing my belt to reach my glove compartment, etc.  It was purchased from http://www.4extender.com/ for a reasonable cost (US$28) and I love it.  It also fits my brother’s GM truck so I am extremely happy with it.

I found out about 4extender.com through Amplestuff.com’s website, which is a site I would highly recommend for everyday things for supersized people like me.  I got 10x hospital gowns from them so I can bring my own to the doctor, x-ray clinic, etc.  They sell things for mobility, hygiene, etc, most of which I didn’t even know could be adapted for me!


I have a Hyundai Santa Fe – this is my second one.  There is ample room for us grand ladies.  It has the telescopic steering wheel with tilt steering as well.  There is ample room for two ample ladies to sit side by side too with an arm rest in between.
They are not low to the ground which I love – saves me having to put weight on my dodgy knee when getting out of the car.
I bought both of mine at the Jim Pattison Hyundai in Coquitlam – on Ottawa Street – opposite Costco.  Tel:  604 552 1700.  If the ladies want to look at one I suggest that they go there and ask for Larry – he was a dream salesman – no pressure and understood exactly what I wanted in a car!  Should they decide to go there, tell them to tell Larry that “Phyllis sent me”!  He better give them wonderful service or he will hear from me!!!!!  He spent many an hour with me while I haggled with him, what colour, what added gizmos to buy if any, etc!!  He had the patience of Job.
I tried the Tucson – next model down from the Santa Fe but it did not have the zip which is what I wanted but very similar in style and size inside.


 I’m currently size 2 – 3x but when we were looking for a vehicle I was 4 – 5x.  We bought a Toyota Venza in May of 2011.  I love that car!!  lots of driver space, steering wheel moves up and down and in and out, the car is easy to get into and out of and the seat belt is long enough.  However, it is quite expensive.  We also have a Honda Civic which is okay also.  Harder to get out of because it is lower but it has lots of driver room and the steering wheel moves and the seat belt fits large size people.   It is less expensive than the Verza and quite a nice car, easy driving also.  Late this fall we tried out other cars as well and I found the Toyota Camry nice to get in and out of with lots of room for large legs and driver space.  The seat belt fit well, the car is very nice but I didn’t like the interior style.  We (my husband and I) also tried the Toyota Corolla, which is considerably less expensive but I found that although the seat belt fit nicely there was not enough leg room for me between the seat and the steering wheel.  We also looked at a Nissan Versa, again lots of driver space and the seat belt fit well, quite a reasonable price especially now with the sale price, I really liked the hatchback but my husband did not like the car.

Hope this helps.  I know how hard it is for a larger person to feel comfortable in a car.  I’d suggest sitting in the vehicle and for me trying the seat belt was really important.  The GMC, Ford and Dodge vehicles don’t seem to have long enough seat belts and then you’re stuck asking for extensions.

 Thank you all for your input… I’m sure many women will find your thoughts and comments helpful!
 
Regards,

SB 

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