How can I narrow my search for a car that meets one important criterion?

I’m looking for a vehicle (wagon or SUV) that can accommodate a six-foot folding screen. Is there any way to determine from a vehicle’s specifications if it will be able to do that?

I’d like to be able to develop a list of options I know will work, instead of doing what I did yesterday – drive almost an hour to a dealership that had a Jetta wagon, only to discover that something 6-ft. long would not fit. Complete waste of time.

When I last went car shopping, most wagons and SUVs brag about their interior cargo space and what they can hold. The Ford Freestyle proclaims it can hold a 12’ kayak, and the Saturn Vue can hold a 10’ long piece of cargo. Just read the specs carefully, and check the pictures, many manufacturers illustrate how much cargo a vehicle can hold.

Depends what you mean by “accommodate.” I could get it into my PT Cruiser, by wedging it between the two front seats and folding down the rear seat.

I’ve noticed that a lot of car specs give the surprisingly-unuseful interior volume, not dimensions. I don’t care how many litres it is; I want to know width, length, and height.

You could find a car that you think might work, call the dealership, and ask a salesperson for the exact measurements of the inside of the car. This will not be the weirdest question s/he has ever been asked.

**panache45 **-- I just sent you an e-mail!

I have a Citroën C5 estate that will accept 6’ loads.

FWIW a 10 foot 2X4 will fit inside my Volvo wagon. It does go all the way to the windshield. I am fairly sure that with the rear seats folded, there is 6 feet clear from the back of the front seats to the tailgate. I can measure if you wish.

Any reason you can’t take the screen along for the test drive?

I’ve seen an optimist do that.
Unfortunately it was an inch too long and pushed the timber through the windshield when his son slammed the tailgate down.

Consumer Reports always gives the exact dimensions in their automobile reviews. They actually have a sort of adjustable box frame made out pipes that they use to test this. They keep adjusting the frame until they reach the largest size that will fit inside a cargo vehicle.

Consumer Reports should be available at your local library. It’s also online (, but you need to be a paid member to see much of the details.

::: shrug:::
I’ve done it several times.

Perhaps a roof rack would be the answer

If your PT Cruiser has the fold-flat front passenger seat, you can even put 8’ long 2x4s in it quite easily. I have done this before.