Could you recommend some cars that have good rear side visibility? As a boomer, my the range of motion in my neck is decreasing, and I have had a number of near misses while changing lanes.
I hate to sound critical, but what use is excellent rear visibility if you cannot turn your head enough to use it?
The solution is clear enough. If you cannot use your direct vision then you must rely more heavily on your mirrors. And if that is still not good enough, you must exercise extreme caution in changing lanes, double- and triple-checking.
But let us help you find a car. Nearly all sedans offer excellent visibility to the rear and to the sides. The few exceptions, such as the Dodge Magnum, are well known. Get yourself a copy of Consumer Reports’ New Car Guide. This publication reviews all models and it emphatically points out those that have restricted rear/side visibility. If CR doesn’t complain you can be sure the car has suitable visibility.
How about an AMC Pacer…
Steve, the Dodge Magnum was a wagon (that a giant sat on, squashing the body down toward the rear).
I find that my Dodge Dakota has excellent rear visibility. But that’s because I don’t have a cap on it.
To the OP: Stick with sedans (unless you WANT a pick-up truck!), and start spending time in the driver’s seats. That’s the only way to see what fits your particular body best. You might also want to consider adding oversize or convex mirrors to your current vehicle.
Just in case you don’t know, or have not seen this before, here is a link to a how-to on adjusting your mirrors:
If you have not used this adjustment technique before it may seem odd, but believe me you can see cars in the traditional blind spots much better this way.
I agree with NYBo. You can’t get much better visibility than a standard cab pickup with no cap.
You also might look at the vehicles that have the rear-facing camera. I have no experience with them, but they might work for you.
You’re going to have to sit in them and try them out. A lot of that depends on YOUR HEIGHT. My wife has a little difficult time seeing out my 4runner…I don’t have a problem at all…But I’m 6’3…and my wife is 5’2.
As has been said, you definitely have to sit in a variety of vehicles in order to evaluate their rear/side visibility in relation to your height and your neck condition. However, I can save you a bit of time by advising that you not even consider any of the following, due to their abysmal rear/side vision:
Unless you want to feel like you are sitting in a sewer pipe with a few very small openings in it, you don’t want to drive those cars.
or MASS transit.
super size rear view mirror.
Depending on your degree of mobility limitation, rear view cameras are available as add on kits from many sources. Adding mirrors in your personal key locations is also an adaptibility trick that modifiers use. Put on your thinking cap and talk to a mobility mod shop too. If you can envision what you might want to adapt to your needs, it’s usually buildable or even buyable.
If I were buying a car for rear and side visibility my first choice would be a Mini Cooper, sort of a goldfish bowl on wheels. Next I would look at a Honda Fit; good back and side vision. The Scion Xc and Honda Element also have good vision; both are square boxes on wheelsw.
Cars with robust B and/or C pillars (Element) usually carry some outward visibility issues. Taller body line in contrast to the overall height of the vehicle (Magnum) will also give you a narrow slit for outward vision. Chassis that ride too tall (F350 Super Duty) will hamper proper detection of smaller vehicles (motorcycles, Smart Cars, Minis) in its blind spot. Vehicles with stylish but too-smallish side view mirrors are problems. A 5 foot person in any of aforementioned vehicle just doubled the risk factor.
Older (pre '72) Mercedes sedans have excellent green house design. For more current year models, roof line similar to Ford Taurus / 500, VW Passat, or Honda Accord have excellent outward view.
Personally, as a fellow Boomer, I do little things to help my decreasing range of motion: Exercise; When driving alone, remove the passenger side headrest; Move the seat a little closer to the steering wheel in the city driving so that it can be used to help rotate my body in the seat; Don’t over eat before driving. Come to think of it, don’t over eat, period.