A Car for Mom

My 78-year-old Mom needs a smaller car. She’s now less than five feet tall and the Buick Regal is just too big. Any ideas? I’m thinking Corolla, Elantra or Civic.

Those choices would be good. However, the key is to have her go test drive and make sure the seating arrangement is comfortable and getting out of the car is acceptable. There are some cars I simply hate to try and get out of. Our family has had very good success with Corollas.

Honda sedans and coupes are built VERY low to the ground, thus making them difficult for the elderly and the infirm to get in or out of them. Believe it or not, the easiest vehicles for elderly people to get in and out of are the smaller “crossover” SUVs, as their seats tend to be high, but usually not so high that one has to climb up to sit on them. This category includes the Honda CR-V, the Subaru Forester, and (possibly) the Toyota RAV-4. The RAV seems to be a bit higher than the CR-V and the Forester, so that one might not be appropriate.

The best that I have found in terms of entry and exit for the elderly is the Subaru Forester. It is actually fairly compact, she would have little problem getting into or out of it, and she would have a good view of the road–as long as the power driver’s seat elevates enough for her. Be sure to test this feature on any vehicle that you test drive, as a short driver needs a power seat that elevates sufficiently.

Does the Regal have a power driver’s seat? If so, is it entry or driving position that is a problem? Mom might be able to handle the problem by lowering the seat to get out and raising it to see the road better. She might laso use pedal extenders to reah tehm and still have a good view of the road.

A Pontiac Vibe is not to high, not to low, but just right.