Which Cars Fit Three Car Seats?

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UPDATE 10/15/2013:
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.

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 newest vehicle to make our list is the 2014 Honda Odyssey. The minivan has loads of room and plenty of accessible Latch anchors.

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 | October 15, 2013 | Comments (98)

2014 Mercedes-Benz M-Class Earns Top Safety Pick Plus Award

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The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety today announced a new member of the prestigious Top Safety Pick Plus club: the 2014 Mercedes-Benz M-Class. The midsize luxury SUV earned the award for good performance in small overlap front, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and seat/head restraint evaluations, the IIHS reported. It is Mercedes-Benz’s first time earning the institute's highest honor since testing for small overlap protection began in 2012.

The automaker reinforced the vehicle's door sills to improve occupant protection in small overlap front crashes for models built after August 2013. In that test, the IIHS stated, the driver's space was maintained "reasonably well." Injury measures recorded on the crash-test dummy indicated harm to the lower leg would be possible in a crash of the tested severity, but that the risk of significant injury to other areas of the body would be low.

By Matt Schmitz | October 8, 2013 | Comments (0)

Mercedes-Benz Lets You Light Up Your Hood Ornament

Mercedes-Benz's new dealer-installed illuminated logo option kind of looks like the glowing arc reactor in Iron Man's chest — though anyone who's seen the blockbuster films knows Tony Stark's luxury brand of choice is Audi. Still, it's not Robert Downey Jr. who stars in Mercedes-Benz's new commercial, but the automaker's three-pointed star itself, now illuminated with LED and light-tube technology to further punctuate the point, just in case the standard iconic logo wasn’t enough for luxury shoppers.

The video ad, posted to YouTube on Wednesday, features a photographic retrospective of Mercedes models through the decades that have borne the three-pointed star; it's accompanied by a sweeping orchestral score. The ad tempts viewers with the taglines, "Mercedes-Benz has offered the star for years … now we even make it shine," and "Discover the Illuminated Star."

By Matt Schmitz | June 6, 2013 | Comments (4)

SUV's GPS Device Helped Capture Boston Bombing Suspects

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Late in the evening on April 18, Boston marathon bombing suspects Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev carjacked a black Mercedes-Benz SUV in Cambridge, Mass. Its driver escaped shortly after midnight on April 19; the ensuing saga left one suspect dead, another in custody and an entire city on lockdown.

It turns out the Mercedes played a significant part in bringing the Tsarvnaev brothers down. The Boston Globe reports that the vehicle, an ML350 SUV, was leased by its owner, a 26-year-old Chinese entrepreneur who wishes to remain anonymous. It had Mercedes' mbrace2 telematics system, complete with an app on the owner's iPhone that allowed him to track the vehicle's location.

What followed was a bit of GPS sleuthing that shows stealing a car with an active telematics subscription — whether it's mbrace, GM's OnStar or others — is a fast way to get caught.

By Kelsey Mays | May 1, 2013 | Comments (5)

2014 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S, Other Sport SUVs Head to 2013 Detroit Auto Show

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At next week's 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, expect a couple SUVs to make a splash in the high-horsepower club — traditionally the province of super-sedans and exotic sports cars. Porsche will unveil a Cayenne Turbo S, complete with a turbo V-8 that kicks out 550 horsepower. That's 10 hp more than last year's Cayenne Turbo with an optional Turbo Power Kit.

More 2013 Detroit Auto Show Coverage

Across the show floor, Jeep will unveil an updated Grand Cherokee and an SRT8 version with a Hemi V-8 the size of Utah. Today's Grand Cherokee SRT8 makes 470 hp; will the 2014 make the 500-hp club? Stay tuned.

The stupid-powerful SUV club goes on. Mercedes-Benz unveiled the GL63 AMG at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show — a $116,925 (excluding a destination fee), three-row SUV with a 550-hp, twin-turbo V-8. No doubt it will be on display in Detroit. Likely so will the automaker's 518-hp ML63 ($97,005), a rival to BMW's 555-hp X5 M ($89,745). Land Rover's redesigned Range Rover, whose sybaritic Supercharged edition ($99,950) boasts a 510-hp, supercharged V-8, will certainly be on display.

Enjoy them all in one place if you can. Seeing one of these on the road will be rare — and you may only spot the taillights.

Related
2013 Detroit Auto Show: What to Expect
2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show
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By Kelsey Mays | January 10, 2013 | Comments (1)

August's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

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The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport topped last month's fastest-selling cars — a list that mixed the usual influx of redesigns and introductions with a lot of older cars. The 2013 Toyota Corolla, Honda Fit, Mini Cooper, Audi A3 and Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen flew off dealer lots last month. All but the A3 saw sales increases, with the Corolla, Fit and Cooper up more than 25% apiece. But all five cars have been on the market for some time since their last update, and none offer major incentives. One possible factor is gas prices, which have risen 20 cents in the past month. All five cars have variants with combined EPA mileage of 30 mpg or better.

Response to the redesigned Hyundai Santa Fe has been "nothing short of remarkable," Hyundai sales chief Dave Zuchowski said in a statement Tuesday. However, sales for the nameplate — whose redesign sprouts a new Santa Fe Sport derivative that's lumped into the same sales figure — fell nearly 50% for the month. What gives?

By Kelsey Mays | September 6, 2012 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2012-13 Mercedes-Benz M-Class

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Mercedes-Benz is recalling 8,675 model-year 2012 and 2013 versions of the M-Class SUV equipped with accessory all-season floormats because of a lack of clearance between the mat and the gas pedal, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In the affected vehicles, the floormats may not fully conform to the floor of the vehicle and could trap the gas pedal. This could lead to unintended acceleration and a crash. According to Mercedes-Benz, applying the brakes steadily will stop the vehicle. 

The automaker will notify owners starting next month, and dealers will replace the mats free of charge. Owners can call Mercedes-Benz at 800-367-6372 or NHTSA's vehicle safety hotline at 888-327-4236 for more info.

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Research the 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class
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By Jennifer Geiger | August 13, 2012 | Comments (0)

Cars.com Buzz Index: March 2012

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Welcome to the Buzz Index, where we rank the hottest cars that consumers search on Cars.com. These cars have seen the biggest increase in searches and dealer contacts since last month.

Top cars in March were an eclectic bunch. Summerlike temperatures across much of the country had consumers thinking sports cars, but rising gas prices — the national average price for regular gas eclipsed $3.90 a gallon last week — brought several high-mpg redesigns alongside. Consider some numbers: Three cars in the top five have 300 horsepower or more — one has nearly double that — and five of the top 10 have an EPA city or highway rating of at least 40 mpg.

Unsurprisingly, eight of the 10 also have been redesigned or received significant updates in the past year.

By Kelsey Mays | March 30, 2012 | Comments (8)

2012 Mercedes-Benz ML350: Is New Really Better Than Old?

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I was excited to test-drive the newly redesigned 2012 Mercedes-Benz ML350 Bluetec. I've never had a chance to drive the ML, having assigned a previous test ML to Cars.com Family reviewer, Sara Lacey, who fell so hard for it that she and her family ended up buying a slightly used 2008 ML.

Read Cars.com's Review of the 2012 Mercedes-Benz ML

According to Sara, the ML was one of the few cars that neither she nor her discerning husband had any strong aversion toward. And since their family regularly loads up the whole clan plus gear to head up to the mountains, the ML makes for the perfect ski car for maneuvering in the snow. To boot, it is still comfortable enough to deal with the usually painful four-hour ride home in Sunday ski traffic.

So the hype was there, and the bar was set high. And we all know what happens when you have high expectations.

By Kristin Varela | March 28, 2012 | Comments (4)

Cars.com Reviews the 2012 Mercedes-Benz M-Class

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Like the comfortable and composed S-Class sedan but need more room? The M-Class midsize SUV should do the trick, says Cars.com Editor Mike Hanley, who tested the ML350 Bluetec diesel version and found it powerful, fairly quiet and pretty fuel efficient for a vehicle this size.

But diesel costs several cents more than premium gas, and Hanley also points out that the Bluetec version starts around $1,500 more than the base gas version. Is it worth the price?

2012 Mercedes-Benz M-Class Review

By Jennifer Geiger | February 2, 2012 | Comments (0)

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