North American Vehicle Lengths and Potential Trends
Posted by itsparker on April 27, 2010
My previous blog posts have raised the possibility of constructing much smaller parking garages, based on the use of ITS-Park technology, and driven by an expected public social and economic based move to smaller car sizes. But where do we stand now on vehicles sizes and weights? What kinds of trends seem to be occurring relative to car sizes and weights. I’ve done some digging in this regard and have to express my appreciation for Automotive News’ technical data web site for providing great aggregate statistics.
Maximum length data
A so-called “sweet spot” for North American vehicle sizes is greater than 170 inches in length. There are currently only 13 vehicles with maximum lengths of 150 inches; 60 vehicles with maximum lengths of 160 inches; and 176 vehicles with maximum lengths of 170 inches – but we still have 4-500 vehicles with lengths in excess of 170 inches.
Typical Vehicle Lengths of 140 to 150 inches
There are currently only 10 vehicles in this category. Vehicles coming in 2011 in this size range include:
- Ford Ka – 142.5 inches
- Chevy Beat – 141.5 inches
- Smart for Four – 142.0 inches
- Fiat 500 – 140.0 inches
Typical Vehicle Lengths of 150 to 160 inches
There are currently 47 vehicles in this class. Typical vehicles are:
- Nissan Cube – 156.7 inches
- Toyota Yaris – 150.6 inches
- Mazda Miata – 157.3 inches
- Ford Fiesta (2011) – 153.1 inches
- Mazda2 (2011) – 153.1 inches
Typical Vehicle Lengths of 160 to 170 inches
There are currently 116 vehicles in this class. Typical vehicles are:
- Volvo C30 – 167.4 inches
- VW new Beettle – 169.1 inches
- Kia Soul – 161.6 inches
- Chevy Aveo5 – 169.7 inches
- Toyota Celica (2011) – 167.3 inches
Typical Vehicle Lengths of 170 to 180 inches
There are currently 176 vehicles in this class. Typical vehicles are:
- Hyundai Elantra – 177.4 inches
- Toyota Corolla – 178.7 inches
- Dodge Caliber – 173.8 inches
- Honda Civic – 176.5 inches
- Nissan Sentra – 179.8 inches
- Chevy Cruze (2011) – 178.5 inches
Typical Vehicles longer than 180 inches include those listed below:
Please note that, according to Edmunds.com, there are about 56 large sedans; 138 large SUV’s; and 14 large minivans.
- BMW 7 Series – 199.8 inches
- Cadillac STS – 196.7 inches
- Chrysler 300 – 196.8 inches
- Dodge Grand Caravan – 202.5 inches
- Lexus GX 460 SUV – 189.2 inches
- And, of course, the previous mentioned Ford Expedition – 205 inches
The above data make the following points:
- Reference my post of 4/15/2010 – “Auto Trends to Impact Future Parking Approach”. Mr. Eric Fedewa surmised that (1) by 2015, U.S. vehicles will be equal to European and Japanese fleets in both fuel economy and emissions; and (2) technology additions will make such cars very expensive, so people will be going for smaller vehicles.
- My post of 4/16/2010, “New Trends in U.S. Parking – Toward ITS-Park Technology?”, indicted that U.S. mayors have become very concerned about the relationship of parking decisions to city growth and design. Any trend toward smaller vehicles, along with ITS-Park technology, will provide major assistance in managing future parking.
- More vehicles are coming that fit into the less than 140-150 inch class – looking toward planned vehicles for the year 2012, and concept vehicles beyond that time frame. More on that subject to come in a future blog.
- Is there already an important and discernable major U.S. trend toward smaller vehicles? Is the trend going to accelerate as ITS-Park garages takeover future parking directions, and people can experience direct benefits – economically and socially? Time will tell!