My mother is petite like I am, and whenever she’s looking for a new car, the first question she asks me is: What cars have adjustable pedals today? My answer: Not many.
This is especially true for 2021 models as automakers have largely done away with this feature. When I’ve asked why they would do such a thing, I’ve been told it was just a gimmick or because of telescoping steering wheels, the ability to adjust pedals is no longer necessary.
Well, I’m calling bullshit.
I previously did a story about pickup trucks in 2020 with adjustable pedals, and I came up with just four – all from Ram or Ford. I can add one more for 2021 – the Ram TRX.
That story happens to be one of our more commented posts, and I get emails and messages from readers on a regular basis about how helpful this story is and how they’d never buy a vehicle without adjustable pedals.
So, gimmick? My eye.
How much will it cost? Well, adjustable pedals aren’t available on the base XL STX trim ($51,585). But they are an option on the XLT trim, and then they are standard starting on the mid-level Limited trim ($63,165).
As for the Navigator, they are (thankfully) standard on the base Standard trim ($76,185).
Is that it, then? Pretty much. With a caveat.
If you’re really quick, you might be able to find a 2020 Chevrolet Suburban, Tahoe or GMC Yukon with adjustable pedals. These models were redesigned for 2021, and the feature was removed. Why? Well, here’s the company line from a GM spokesperson:
“The decision was made to remove the adjustable pedals, as the seat travel on the new Tahoe and Suburban have been extended fore and aft, and, in conjunction with the telescoping steering column, was designed to fit a multitude of varying customer requirements.”
The bottom line on adjustable pedals
Even though seats are more adjustable and tilt/telescoping steering wheels are prevalent, there is still a need for adjustable pedals – especially on large SUVs and trucks. More often than not, when I put my seat in a far-forward position, that means I’m eating the steering wheel.
I just can’t push it far enough away to make it safe for my petite stature.
But if I could push my seat back 2 inches, adjust the pedals and leave the steering wheel pushed all the way in, that would make my driving position better and safer. As it is, in most of these vehicles, if I were ever in an accident where airbags deployed, the best-case scenario is a broken nose. I don’t want to think about the worst case.