2015 Range Rover Evoque [grey] getting in

Best used cars with a high driving position

Cars with a high driving position give you a great view out, and can be easier to get in and out of. Here are 10 of our favourites, with something to suit a range of needs and budgets.

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By Cazoo editorial team

21 March 2022
Updated: 8 July 2022

While some of us like a low, sporty driving position that makes us feel close to the road, others prefer to sit higher up, for a more expansive view. If you have mobility issues it can be much easier to get in and out of a car with a high driving position, too, and if you have kids it can make the process of lifting them – or their child seat – less of a strain on your back.

You might think you need a big SUV to get a car with a high driving position but there’s actually a wide variety of used cars that might satisfy your needs, with something to suit every taste and budget. Here are our 10 favourites.

How to find the right driving position

Car designers use the term ‘H point’ to describe the height of a car’s driving position, referring to how far above the ground a typical person’s hips are when sitting in the driver’s seat. For maximum ease of access, it’s ideal for your car’s H point to roughly match the level of your hips, so you don’t have to drop down or climb up into the seat.

Whether that H point suits you is partly a matter of personal preference, but there are other things to consider. You may have difficulty lifting your legs up into a car with a high floor, for instance. If the ease of getting children into and out of the car is a concern, you also need to consider the relative height of where you carry them and the back seat.

It might take a bit of trial and error to find the car that best suits you, but one that does is almost certainly out there.

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1. Abarth 595

The Abarth 595 is proof that a car doesn’t have to sit low to the ground to feel sporty. It’s essentially a sporty version of the Fiat 500, with a makeover that includes bigger bumpers, a spoiler above the back window, body-hugging seats, a more powerful engine, lower suspension and bigger wheels. It’s fast and a lot of fun to drive.

Like the Fiat 500, the Abarth 595 is relatively tall for a city car. The seats are mounted quite high, a neat trick for giving the feel of more passenger space in small cars. It means that average-size people can just step into the 595, with only a small drop down into the seat.

2. Honda Jazz

The Honda Jazz is one of the most practical small hatchbacks. It’s roughly the same size as a Ford Fiesta, yet it gives you as much interior space as a midsize family car does. It’s relatively tall and wide, so there’s a big, square space for people and things. Four tall adults fit comfortably and the boot is huge for this type of car. It’s also a very comfortable car to drive.

As in the Abarth 595, the seats are mounted quite high to create more space. That puts the seats at the right level for easy access. The back doors open wide, too, which helps when you’re getting children in and out.

3. Citroen C4 Cactus

The Citroen C4 Cactus has more character (and a higher driving position) than most other compact hatchbacks. Versions sold new from 2014 to 2018 feature ‘AirBumps’ – plastic panels on the side doors designed to absorb car park knocks from doors and trolleys. The style of cars sold since 2018 is toned down a bit, but it’s still pleasingly distinctive. Inside, there’s enough space for a family of four and particularly soft, well-shaped seats. The ride is soft and smooth, too, and all of the available engines are very fuel-efficient.

The C4 Cactus sits higher off the ground than most other midsize hatchbacks, to make it look a bit more like an SUV. That means the seats are relatively high up, so most people should be able to get in and out easily.

4. Ford Focus Active

The Ford Focus is one of the best mid-size hatchbacks. It’s spacious, well-equipped, enjoyable to drive and you can choose from lots of models – including the Active. It’s styled to look like an SUV, with raised suspension and additional grey and silver trim around the lower edges of the body.

Ford seats tend to be mounted quite high anyway, but the extra 30mm lift in the Focus Active could make a crucial difference for you. You can have it as a hatchback or estate, and there’s even a luxurious Vignale model. If you like the Active concept but prefer a smaller car, check out the Fiesta Active.

5. Audi A6 Allroad

Like the Ford Focus Active, the Audi A6 Allroad is a higher-riding version of a familiar model. It’s based on the A6 Avant estate, with SUV-style additions including rugged-looking exterior trim and raised suspension. The beautifully made, user-friendly interior is spacious, comfortable and packed with high-tech features. It’s really practical, as well, with a huge boot.

A relaxing driving experience and powerful engines make the A6 Allroad great for very long journeys. It can tow heavy trailers and go over surprisingly tough off-road terrain, too. An average-size adult will drop a couple of inches down into the seat, which wouldn’t deter most people.

6. Volkswagen Sharan

The Volkswagen Sharan is, in many ways, the ultimate family car – a hugely practical seven-seat MPV that’s good to drive, cost-effective and easy to get in and out of. There’s a huge amount of passenger space, with enough room for adults in the third-row seats (not a given in this type of car). You can fold away some or all of the seats to create an even larger boot. Some models even have swivelling seats that can face each other, turning the car into a mobile lounge.

The Sharan is a big, tall car so the seats are mounted high to give the driver and passengers a panoramic view out. Getting in the back is even easier than in the front – thanks to big sliding side doors you can just walk in.

7. Dacia Duster

The Dacia Duster is the lowest-priced new SUV on the market, yet it’s actually a better car than some costlier rivals. It’s not the quietest or smoothest of small SUVs but it’s extremely practical and solidly built, so it’ll stand up to the rigours of family life. Well equipped high-spec models are good value and it has real character – the kind of car you might decide to name.

Being an SUV, the Duster sits quite high off the ground (four-wheel-drive versions are usefully capable when driving off-road). The floor is relatively high as a result, but most people should find getting in very easy. The tall body also means you’re unlikely to bang your head putting children in the back.

Read our Dacia Duster review

8. Kia Niro

The Kia Niro is a great option if you want a practical compact SUV (you might call it a crossover) that will help lower your carbon footprint because it’s available with a choice of hybrid, plug-in hybrid or electric power. It’s spacious, well equipped and gives a lovely smooth ride. The top-of-the-range electric e-Niro can go around 300 miles on a fully charged battery, so it’s a viable option even if you regularly do longer journeys.

By crossover standards, the Niro sits relatively close to the ground – it’s more of a high hatchback than a low SUV. But the seats are high up so most people will only need to drop down a few inches into the seats.

9. Range Rover Evoque

The Range Rover Evoque may be the smallest Range Rover, but it doesn’t scrimp on luxury. Most versions have the same sumptuous leather upholstery and high-tech features as the bigger models – and it feels a bit more special than its rivals, which turns every journey into an event. It’s not the most practical mid-size SUV, but there’s as much space for people and things as you’ll find in a Volkswagen Golf.

Shorter people might find getting in requires a bit of a step up, but for all but the tallest people, the Evoque’s H point should more or less match the height of their hips. So it’s very close to the ideal for ease of access.

Read our Range Rover Evoque review

10. Mercedes-Benz GLE

The Mercedes-Benz GLE SUV delivers on everything that a big SUV should. It’s extremely practical, luxuriously comfortable, packed with high-tech features, can tow heavy trailers and go farther than most people will ever need off-road. It’s not quite as good to drive as some rivals, but the latest version (sold new since 2019) is stylish and has an interior with a huge wow factor.

If you want a car that’s got space for all the family and gives you an elevated driving position that gives you a commanding view of what’s around you, the GLE is a great option.

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