2013 Buick Encore: Car Seat Check


The all-new Buick Encore is part of a new class of cars: the near-luxury subcompact crossover segment, which also includes the BMW X1 and Audi Q3. The 2013 Encore seats five, but space is at a premium. The Encore is 3 feet shorter than its bigger sibling, the Enclave and it really shows.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide 30 rear-facing infant-safety seat, a Britax Roundabout convertible child-safety seat and Graco high-back TurboBooster seat.


The front seats are adjusted to a comfortable position for a 6-foot driver and a 5-foot-8 passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver's seat, and the infant seat and convertible seats are installed behind the passenger seat. We also install the convertible seat in the second row's middle seat with the booster and infant seat in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit. If there's a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible.

Here's how the 2013 Encore did in Cars.com's Car Seat Check:


Latch system: There are two sets of lower Latch anchors in the Encore's outboard seats. The anchors sit about an inch into the seat bight, where the back and bottom cushions meet. The stiff seat cushions made it somewhat difficult to use the anchors with rigid Latch connectors, but I didn't have any problems installing it with the hooklike anchors.

There are three tether anchors in the Encore. They're located near the top of the seatbacks and are easy to use.

Booster seat: I had to remove the head restraint to properly fit the high-back booster seat in the Encore's backseat. Parents should note that the middle seat doesn't have a head restraint and this seating position should only be used with a high-back booster seat. The seat belt buckles are floppy, which can be difficult for younger kids to use independently.


Convertible seat: The forward-facing convertible fit well, but the Encore's space constraints became apparent with the rear-facing convertible. To fit the rear convertible, I had to move the front passenger seat forward several inches. This left me with just enough room to sit in the passenger seat without my knees hitting the glove box.


Infant-safety seat: For this rear-facing seat, I had to move the front passenger seat even farther forward than with the rear convertible. I also had to move the front passenger's seatback into a more upright position. At 5 feet 8 inches tall, there wasn't enough room for me to sit in the front passenger's seat.


How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

Editor's note: For three car seats — infant-safety seat, convertible and booster seats — to fit in a car, our criterion is that a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat.

Research the 2013 Buick Encore 
More Car Seat Checks 
More Safety News



Wow that's one ugly looking car.


After looking at this "thing", I really miss Pontiac. Ugly, small and pricey. Great combo!


GM continues to be way off the mark. Please tell me this is not what our $$$ has given us.


I love my compact SUV. I'm short so it suits me perfect on the other hand my husband is 5'9" and is unable to sit on the front passenger with the infant car seat on the back seat. Can't wait for our little to start using front facing car seat so we can be more comfortable. I should have tested the car seat fitting before I bought the SUV.

Theodore Cowan

Agreed. Our rear facing Chico NextFit did not leave enough room for front seat passengers. This car is a 'no go' for folks with children aged 0-4.

Post a Comment 

Please remember a few rules before posting comments:

  • If you don't want people to see your email address, simply type in the URL of your favorite website or leave the field empty.
  • Do not mention specific car dealers by name. Feel free to mention your city, state and brand.
  • Try to be civil to your fellow blog readers. This blog is not a fan or enthusiast forum, it is meant to help people during the car-buying process and during the time between purchases, so shoppers can keep a pulse on the market.
  • Stay on topic. We want to hear your opinions and thoughts, but please only comment about the specified topic in the blog post.
view posting rules

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In

Search Results

KickingTires Search Results for

Search Kicking Tires

KickingTires iPhone App