2015 Acura MDX: Car Seat Check

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With a 2014 redesign under its belt, it's no surprise that the Acura MDX is unchanged for 2015. What has changed is the child-safety seats we use for our Car Seat Checks. We were able to fit three car seats across the MDX's second-row bench, but there wasn't enough room between the booster seat and rear-facing infant seat for easy buckling access. Because the second row's middle bottom seat cushion is shorter than the outboard seats, about 30 percent of the infant seat base was hanging off the front of the seat. It's recommended that at least 80 percent of a child-safety seat is touching the car's seat. Parents should keep an eye on proper fit when installing car seats in this middle seating position.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two; three could fit if using narrow car seats

How many car seats fit in the third row? Two

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By Jennifer Newman | August 28, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Land Rover Range Rover: Car Seat Check

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It doesn't get much more posh than the 2014 Land Rover Range Rover. This ultraluxury SUV wraps its passengers in comfort with its supple leather seats and head restraints that are as soft as pillows. With room for five, our test car had a long wheelbase, which adds 7.9 inches to this already large SUV's length. Some may argue that this isn't a family car, but our policy is to test cars that arrive in our Chicago headquarters that have a workable backseat, and the Range Rover certainly meets that criterion.

The Range Rover nearly fit three child-safety seats across its backseat, but the seats were too close together for a child in a booster seat to reach the seat belt buckle. Using narrow car seats in the backseat might be an option for parents of three kids interested in this SUV.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Jennifer Newman | August 21, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Honda Fit: Car Seat Check

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Families will find a lot to like in the five-seat subcompact hatchback's 2015 Honda Fit, as it improves on its predecessor's already-roomy cabin and boasts a generous 52.7 cubic feet of maximum cargo space with the rear fold-flat seats down. However, the new Fit still isn't a great fit when it comes to installing car seats; in fact, it's gotten even more unfit in some categories. The last time we performed a Car Seat Check on the Fit was the 2013 version (there was no new 2014 model), with which we had some trouble — particularly with the seat belts' floppy bases, front passenger legroom and driver visibility due to the middle-seat tether anchor's position.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Matt Schmitz | August 14, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Land Rover Range Rover Sport: Car Seat Check

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The 2014 Land Rover Range Rover Sport gained the Evoque's signature looks in its 2014 redesign. It also gained an optional third row — creating seating for seven — that some families might find useful for smaller kids. Our test car had only two rows with seating for five.

We managed to fit all three of our child-safety seats — booster, rear-facing infant seat and convertible — in the Range Rover Sport's backseat, but it failed to meet our criteria for an acceptable fit: A child's hand must be able to fit between the booster seat and the next car seat to buckle up. However, in the Range Rover Sport the car seats were jammed together so tightly that even the smallest of hands couldn't fit. However, a different configuration of car seats — two boosters and an infant seat, for example — might work. Parents of three who are interested in this car should bring their children's car seats along to a visit to the dealership.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Jennifer Newman | August 7, 2014 | Comments (0)

Which Cars Fit Three Car Seats?

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UPDATE AUG. 5, 2014: Parents are often searching for the automotive holy grail: a car that's not a minivan and can fit three child-safety seats across the backseat. It's a short list.

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In the more than three years that Cars.com editors have been installing car seats into test vehicles, we've come across several vehicles that can hold three car seats across a backseat.

The 2014 Land Rover LR4 and 2014 Toyota 4Runner are the latest vehicles to land on our list. The 2014 LR4's appearance is no surprise; it's been a regular on our list since the 2011 model year.

As we come across more cars that fit three child-safety seats, we'll add to this list. For now, here are the cars from our Car Seat Checks that can fit three car seats in the second row:

By Jennifer Newman | August 6, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport: Car Seat Check

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The 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport earned Cars.com's Family Car of the Year award for 2014, and it's easy to understand why after spending some time in it. With roomy backseat, sizable cargo area and family-friendly touches such as an optional panoramic sunroof and rear sunshades for the side windows, the Santa Fe Sport has a winning combination of features that appeal to families.

We found this two-row crossover easy to work with in terms of child-safety-seat installation. While we have some gripes with the seat belt bases, we seemed to have less trouble with our car seats' impact on front passenger legroom with this year's model as compared to the 2013. Read on to find out how the current model measured up.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Matt Schmitz | July 31, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Toyota Prius: Car Seat Check

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When Cars.com reviewer Joe Wiesenfelder critiqued the 2012 Toyota Prius, he called it "an exceptionally efficient car at a relatively low price for people who care more about conservation than the act of driving. Given its success, the formula seems to have worked just fine." Evidently, that formula has continued working so well that the popular hybrid has changed little in the past two model years. That comforting sameness extended to child-safety-seat installation, which remained relatively easy, garnering just a couple of minor complaints from us with regard to the head restraints and seat belts.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Matt Schmitz | July 24, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Mazda CX-5: Car Seat Check

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Since its debut for the 2013 model year, the Mazda CX-5 has proved itself a formidable contender among compact crossovers. It particularly distinguished itself in the fun-to-drive category, where the CX-5 only improved when it returned for the 2014 model year with a more powerful 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine option. Not a lot has changed for 2015: The CX-5's base price has increased a mere $150, including destination, and for the purposes of car seat installation, all backseat passenger-room dimensions remain identical to the outgoing model.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Matt Schmitz | July 17, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Lexus RX 350: Car Seat Check

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Lexus' five-seat luxury crossover comes in two versions: the gas-powered RX 350 and hybrid RX 450h. When it comes to interior space, the two crossovers are nearly identical except for backseat legroom. Our test car, the 2015 RX 350, has 36.8 inches of rear legroom, but the hybrid version has slightly more at 37.1 inches. In our tests, we had to move the RX 350's front passenger seat forward to fit one of our rear-facing infant-safety seats behind it.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Jennifer Newman | July 8, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Subaru Legacy: Car Seat Check

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Families in the market for a midsize sedan face an overwhelming array of choices, but if you're looking for one with all-wheel drive, the list gets narrowed a quite a bit. One option, the Subaru Legacy, was redesigned for 2015 with fresh exterior styling, a new multimedia system and a more comfortable cabin. There's plenty of room for two child-safety seats in the new Legacy, but parents may have a bit of trouble with the sedan's Latch anchors.

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How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

By Jennifer Geiger | June 26, 2014 | Comments (0)

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