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With the BBC reporting that car park spaces need making bigger and the Daily Telegraph that 'Clarkson parking' is on the increase, it is becoming more and more important for us all to know the size and dimensions of our cars to avoid them getting damaged by our driving actions and that of other road users.

Parking Bay Size Increase

According to the BBC News "the standard parking space in the UK is 15.7ft (4.8m) in length, by 7.8ft (2.4m) in width", and taking into consideration the rise of the SUV and the overall increase in car sizes over the years, the UK's largest car park provider, National Car Parks (NCP), "said it had widened some bays in London, Manchester and Bournemouth to cope with the popularity of increasingly large cars," and that it "planned to widen parking bays "wherever possible"".

They will also have to look at the height restrictions on car park entrances too, as the old 6ft (1828.8mm) limit is now a tad too close to many of the new SUV heights

With Accident Exchange estimating that there has been a 35% rise in parking accidents since 2014, and the latest models of the Audi Q7, Land Rover Discovery, BMW X5 and the Mercedes GL-Class all longer than 4.8m, cars are just not fitting into spaces any more.

Even smaller hatchback models have increased in size by 16%, it is no wonder that it is all the more important to know how big your new car is before you get it if you want to avoid being part of the statistic from Accident Exchange that says that "the number of crashes and scratches while parking is now costing UK insurers about £1.4bn per year."

Car Size Guide

Automobile Dimension give a guide to general car sizes for all makes and models of cars, so you can find your particular favourite and see just how big it is - and whether or not it will fit in your garage!

But if you are just looking for a general idea, here is a rough guide to car sizes in various categories:

City Cars

These range from the SmartForTwo to the Hyundai i10. Car lengths vary between 2695mm and 3665mm, heights from 1460mm to 1610mm, and widths from 1475mm to 1665mm. See here for more details.

Small Cars

These range from the MINI to the Renault Zoe. Car lengths vary from 3821mm to 4084mm, heights from 1414mm to 1578mm, and widths from 1665mm to 1780mm. See here for more details

Compact Cars

These range from the Citroen C4 Cactus to the Honda Civic. Car lengths vary from 4109mm to 4370mm, heights from 1424mm to 1530mm, and widths from 1729mm to 1823mm. See here for more details.

Family Cars

These range from the Infiniti Q30 to the Audi A4. Car lengths vary from 4425mm to 4726mm, heights from 1418mm to 1575, and widths from 1703mm to 1871mm. See here for more details.

Executive Cars

These range from the BMW 4 Series Coupe to the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo. Car lengths vary from 4628mm to 5004mm, heights from 1377mm to 1559mm, and widths from 1810mm to 1910mm. See here for more details.

Luxury Cars

These range from the Mercedes SL to the Maserati Quattroporte. Car lengths vary from 4631mm to 5264mm, heights from 1294mm to 1496mm, and widths from 1877mm to 1980mm. See here for more details.

Sports Cars

These range from the Mazda MX-5 to the Mercedes S Coupe. Car lengths vary from 39915mm to 5027mm, heights from 1116mm to 1475mm, and widths from 1735mm to 1992mm. See here for more details.

Estate Cars

These range from the SEAT Ibiza ST to the Jaguar XF Sportbrake. Car lengths vary from 4236mm to 4966mm, heights from 1429mm to 1550mm, and widths from 1693mm to 1895mm. See here for more details.

MPVs

These range from the Kia Venga to the Ssangyong Rodius. Car lengths vary from 4068mm to 5130mm, heights from 1530mm to 1860mm, and widths from 1695mm to 1928mm. See here for more details.

Small Crossovers

These range from the Ford Ecosport to the Suzuki S Cross. Car lengths vary from 3700mm to 4300mm, heights from 1529mm to 1679mm, and widths from 1660mm to 1822mm. See here for more details.

Compact SUVs

These range from the Jeep Renegade to the Mercedes GLC Coupe. Car lengths vary from 4255mm to 4732mm, heights from 1494mm to 1735mm , and widths from 1780mm to 1920mm. See here for more details.

Large SUVs and 4x4s

These range from the Mercedes G Class to the Mercedes GLS. Car lengths vary from 4662mm to 5130mm, heights from 1624 to 2035, and widths from 1760mm to 2008mm. See here for more details.

Pick-ups

These range from the Mitsubishi L200 to the Ford Ranger. Car lengths vary from 5205mm to 5362mm, heights from 1775mm to 1815mm, and widths from 1840mm to 1954mm. See here for more details.

As customer choices and requirements change, car manufacturers change too. But the world outside and road management is a lot slower to react. It's a cross that has to be borne by not only owners of big(ger) cars but by those of us parking next to them too!


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