2015 Ford Fusion: Car Seat Check

15Fusion_main

There's a lot to like about the Ford Fusion, from its turbocharged four-cylinder engine to its distinctive looks. However, after installing child-safety seats in the 2015 Fusion equipped with optional inflatable rear seat belts, I can't say that I like the Fusion's lower Latch anchors.

The lower Latch anchors sit nearly 3 inches into the seat cushions. Other automakers place their anchors either out in the open or about an inch into the cushions. Occasionally, I'll encounter anchors that are 2 inches into the cushions; this deep placement makes it difficult to connect to the anchors. Trying to reach the Fusion's anchors was, well, trying, but what made them even more difficult was the lack of space around them, so maneuvering was challenging. While I had some trouble connecting to the 2013 Fusion's Latch anchors because of seat belt buckle interference when I last tested this car, it was nowhere near this difficult. The 2013 Fusion had a traditional rear seat belt, while the 2015 test car had the optional inflatable seat belts. Perhaps that explains the difference.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

More Car Seat Checks

By Jennifer Newman | October 30, 2014 | Comments (0)

With Flu Season Nearing, Keep Germs at Bay in Car

Sickkid

As parents, many of us are still congratulating ourselves for surviving the start of the school year and its never-ending homework. But there's a new battleground on the horizon, and it's one that could easily affect everyone in your family: cold and flu season.

Related: Carsick Kids? We've Got Tips to Help

The flu is nothing to sneeze at. It sends more young children to the hospital than any other vaccine-preventable illness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The best way to prevent it and its complications is to get the flu vaccine for yourself and your family. It's recommended for children as young as 6 months old. Of course, the vaccine's effectiveness varies widely from season to season, so parents need to be vigilant when it comes to containing germs.

While many of us are trained to wipe down frequently touched surfaces in our homes (door knobs, light switches) whenever someone has the flu or a nasty cold, how often do those practices carry over to the family car, especially if you carpool? Here are our tips for keeping your car from becoming a petri dish:

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

2015 Honda Accord: Car Seat Check

2015HondaAccordRFC

Beyond some safety and convenience features being made more widely available in the lineup, the affordable and reliably comfortable Honda Accord has scarcely changed for the 2015 model year. By and large, that's a good thing, at least where it concerns child-safety seats. The five-seat midsize family sedan's scores in our latest Car Seat Check were identical to those of the 2014 version, which got dinged for front-passenger legroom with the infant seat, and floppy seat belt bases.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

More Car Seat Checks

By Matt Schmitz | October 28, 2014 | Comments (0)

Use Our Tricks to Keep Halloween Safe This Year

Halloween_driving_tips3

Here's a scare for parents and drivers: Kids are more than two times as likely to be killed by a car on Halloween night as any other night, according to Safe Kids Worldwide.

Read More #FamilyCarAdvice

If you're driving on Halloween, remember to slow down and be alert for ghosts and goblins popping out from between parked cars. Safe Kids Worldwide recommends that drivers enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly on Halloween. Make sure to have your car's headlights on — even if it's still daylight — to help trick-or-treaters see your car. And check those headlights before Halloween night to make sure that the bulbs aren't burned out. Keep in-car distractions to a minimum, especially once you're in a neighborhood.

We've published the following tips before to keep kids safe while trick-or-treating. Share your ideas in the comment section below.

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

2015 Toyota Camry: Car Seat Check

15Camry_main

Redesigned for 2015, the Toyota Camry has a new look that will likely cause shoppers to love it or hate it, thanks mostly to its wide-mouth grille. This midsize sedan seats five, but in our tests it only fits two child-safety seats across the backseat.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

More Car Seat Checks

By Jennifer Newman | October 24, 2014 | Comments (2)

Video: Parents: Doing This Is Sabotaging Your Teen

What is "this"? Driving while texting, after drinking alcohol, making or taking phone calls and not wearing a seat belt. In the video above, Cars.com Executive Editor Joe Wiesenfelder explains that, when it comes to teen drivers, the "monkey see, monkey do" rule is in effect, so always lead by example behind the wheel. Watch the video for more.

By Matt Schmitz | October 24, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: Evenflo Embrace Child-Safety Seats

Evenflo-embrace

Car Seats Affected: 202,346 Evenflo Embrace rear-facing infant-safety seats equipped with an AmSafe QT1 buckle with the following model numbers: 30711365, 31511040, 31511323, 31511400, 3151198, 3151953, 31521138, 46811205, 46811237, 48111200, 48111215, 48111215A, 48111218, 48111234, 48111235, 48111235A, 48111462, 48411391, 48411391D, 48411392, 48411504, 48411504D, 52911307A, 52921040, 55311138, 55311238, and 55311292. The affected seats were manufactured between December 2011 and May 2013.

The Problem: The seat's harness buckle could become difficult to unlatch due to prolonged exposure to food and drink spills. If the buckle becomes stuck, it could be challenging to quickly remove the child from the seat in the event of a crash or other emergency. "None of the complaints Evenflo has received involved a child injury or an emergency exit from the vehicle," the manufacturer said in a statement.

The Fix: Evenflo will notify registered owners and send a newly designed buckle and instructions for installing the replacement buckle. Click here for a tutorial on how to clean your buckle. If your car seat is not registered, register it here.

What Owners Should Do: Evenflo began notifying owners earlier this week. Owners can contact Evenflo at 800-490-7591, or visit their website.

More Recalls

Manufacturer image  

By Jennifer Geiger | October 24, 2014 | Comments (0)

Ford's Driving Skills for Life Makes Big Impression on My Teen

IMG_3308_KV

While my 14-year-old daughter isn't old enough to drive yet, I jumped at the opportunity to take her to Ford's Driving Skills for Life, an internationally touring program that teaches teen drivers and their parents about road perils that may not be addressed in traditional driver's education programs. I figured there was no better time to start exposing her to some life-saving lessons.

Read More #FamilyCarAdvice

There was one lesson in particular that my daughter learned at the event, and it wasn't even a lesson the program intended to teach: Among the modules that teens rotate through in this half-day program, drivers get behind the wheel wearing "fatal-vision" goggles. They're designed to simulate the effects of impaired driving, and participants wear them while attempting to navigate at low speeds through a driving course. Since my daughter couldn't drive the course, she got into the backseat while I drove.

By Kristin Varela | October 24, 2014 | Comments (1)

Should My Kid Get the Hand-Me-Down Car?

SecondCar

My son turned 12 this summer — right around the time my husband's car turned 14, which means the end is nigh (for my husband's car, of course, not my husband). It raised an interesting question: Will whatever we buy as a replacement — our next "second car" — go to my son once he's old enough to drive? If so, my son would push for a Dodge Challenger or Ford Mustang as the replacement for my husband's older car, but what should parents be thinking about when considering whether their next vehicle will become a kid's car somewhere down the line?

Read More #FamilyCarAdvice

It's National Teen Driver Safety Week, so we're on the case.

Related: Top 10 Used Cars for $10K

Parents first need to decide whether they will pass their current, aging car down to their teen driver or buy a new (or new to them) car for the teen.

Whatever you choose, there are good reasons to buy a brand-new car:

  • You get the newest safety features
  • There are no questions about the car's history
  • You get a full warranty
  • You can choose which features are important (to you, the parent) and which features you should skip for a teen driver (premium stereo, sport-tuned engine — I'm looking at you)

If you're getting a new car you will drive for a few years before it goes to your kid, it's easier to justify the cost. Likewise, if you're going to be driving the car first, insurance will likely be a bit lower by the time the kid gets it, after miles and years have been piled on.

By Sara Lacey | October 23, 2014 | Comments (1)

Why Do Many Teens Refuse to Buckle Up?

Info-small

One of my earliest childhood memories is loading up as a family into my dad's wood-paneled Jeep, and hearing, "The car won't start until everyone has a seat belt on." That, and if we wanted to turn the light on in the back, we had to blow on it really hard to wake up the little light-keeper woman that lived inside (thanks for that one, Dad). Because seat belt usage was so ingrained growing up, I've never gotten into a car without buckling up, which makes it that much more shocking that so many teens drive and ride seat belt-less today.

Related: Parents as Driving Instructors: What Works?

Statistics show that in half of all teen fatalities on the road, the teens were not wearing seat belts. What's scarier is that motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In a new report funded by the General Motors Foundation, Safe Kids Worldwide surveyed 1,000 teens and asked the question all parents want to know: What the @#$% were you thinking? Although, I assume they phrased it more politely.

The top reasons teens admitted to not buckling up on every ride?

By Kristin Varela | October 22, 2014 | Comments (2)

Search Results

KickingTires Search Results for

Search Kicking Tires

KickingTires iPhone App
Ask.cars.com