2014 Acura MDX: Car Seat Check

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Acura's MDX was already a hit with families looking for an upscale three-row crossover. The redesigned-for-2014 model is an improvement. Easy, one-button third-row access, a cavernous backseat and three sets of Latch anchors in the second row should make families even happier.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two. We were able to install three child-safety seats in the second row, but the seats were set too close together to allow a child's hand to reach the booster seat's buckle, so it didn't meet our fit criteria.

How many car seats fit in the third row? Two

What We Like

  • Both the rear-facing convertible and the infant seats went in easily and had plenty of room in the second row; we didn't have to move the front passenger seat forward to accommodate them.
  • There are three sets of Latch anchors in the second row;that's one more set than usual.
  • The Latch anchors are in slits in the leather and easy to use.
  • The second row slides and reclines.

What We Don't

  • Although the booster was easy to install and had plenty of room in both rows, the second- and third-row buckles are floppy, which makes them harder for kids to use.
  • The forward-facing convertible installed and fit well in both rows, but parents might get confused when connecting the top tether strap. There are several cargo hooks behind the second and third rows that should not be used as a tether anchor.
  • The second row easily slides forward with the push of a button, but the resulting opening to the third row is pretty small.

Latch

Infant

Rfc

Ffc

Booster

Third-row

Grading Scale

A: Plenty of room for the car seat and the child; doesn't impact driver or front-passenger legroom. Easy to find and connect to Latch and tether anchors. No fit issues involving head restraint or seat contouring. Easy access to the third row.  

B: Plenty of room. One fit or connection issue. Some problems accessing third row when available.

C: Marginal room. Two fit or connection issues. Difficult to access third row when available.

D: Insufficient room. Two or more fit or connection issues.

F: Does not fit or is unsafe.

About Cars.com's Car Seat Checks

Editors Jennifer Geiger and Jennifer Newman are certified child safety seat installation technicians.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide 30 infant-safety seat, a Britax Roundabout convertible seat and Graco TurboBooster seat.  The front seats are adjusted 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 and convertible seats are installed behind the front passenger seat.

We also install the forward-facing convertible 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; a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. If there's a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible. To learn more about how we conduct our Car Seat Checks, go here.

Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat.

Related
Research the 2014 Acura MDX
More Car Seat Checks
More Safety News

Comments 

What an awesome vehicle!

Gabriel

My wife and I recently test drove the 2014 Acura MDX. In the third row, we clearly noted that there were two tether hooks on the back of the seat (and marked as such), but we could not locate the LATCH anchors. In the second row, the anchors were clearly visible (as in your pictures in the article). Did you locate LATCH anchors in the third row?

Also, we felt the third row was very tight. Do you believe children in the third room would sit comfortably?

Jennifer Geiger, News Editor at Cars.com

@Gabriel,
The MDX's third row doesn't have any Latch anchors. Also, yes, the third row is tight on space. Adults won't be comfortable, but kids will fit fine.

Jane

Helllo,

We have a 1.5 old kid and expect a new born. Including grandparents, we will have 4 adults and 2 kids. Will mdx work? Seems we can't put two car seats on 2nd row as we can't access the 3rd row, right? But if put a car seat on the 3rd row, will it be hard for my 1.5 old baby to get in and let we buckle him? Not sure whether we can get a mdx although we really like the car. Appreciate your advice.

Laura

I bought a 2005 MDX because it has 5 anchors and I run a home daycare. We tried to instal car seats in the 3rd row last night, NO LUCK! Couldn't rear face because the top of the seat ran into the 2nd row. Could forward face because the seat belts and stiffly facing forward preventing us from successfully installing it so it doesn't move more than an inch in either direction. Any advice?

Mark

I have four kids (7,6,2,1) and am able to fit them in the car while still having access to the 3rd row. The 7 and 6 year olds sit in the 3rd row with Recaro Young Sport seats in the booster configuration. My 2 year old sits in the LH 2nd row in a Recaro ProRIDE in the forward facing position. My 1 year old sits in the center 2nd row in a Combi Shuttle infant car seat. It is a tight fit but the base of the Combi Shuttle is narrow and tall enough to allow the infant car seat to clear the RH 2nd row seat.

Overall, I'm satisfied with the 2014 MDX's child carrying capabilities. There is adequate leg room for my 7 and 6 year old in the 3rd row (52" and 47" tall). The one-touch rear access to the 3rd row is very kid friendly. The view out of the rear is partially blocked by both booster seats but the rear view camera solves that problem when backing up.

My 1 year old is about ready to move to the Recaro ProRIDE in the rear facing position and my 2 year old will move to a Recaro Performance Sport seat. Unfortunately, Recaro Performance Sport appears to be too wide to fit in the 2nd row while maintaining access to the 3rd row. I will update my findings.

Julia S

I have two Diona RXTs that are only 17 inches wide and sit side by side including middle and allow easy access to third row. The Diona's are remarkable seats and accommodate infants to 70 lb kids in a harnessed booster. I knew when i bought the 2014 mdx (trading in my odyssey) that i would need the seats for our third babe due in feb. the diona's also easily accommodate her intact car seat but we'll be eventually buying a third Diona. Kicking tires could have easily latched three seats in the second row with this seat variety. btw-i love my car

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