Best cars for three child car seats: the verdict

Fitting three child seats into a car can be a challenge, so we’ve put 16 SUVs and MPVs to the test to find out which ones are most suitable...

03 May 2019
Best cars for three child car seats

What Car? says…

Size doesn’t necessarily matter when it comes to a car’s ability to accommodate more than two child seats. We were able to fit three child seats into only two of our large SUVs: the Kia Sorento and Peugeot 5008. We can forgive the Citroën C5 Aircross and Mazda CX-5, because they have only five seats, but others, including the new Honda CR-V and Skoda Kodiaq, proved disappointing. 

The luxury SUVs fared better, with the Audi Q7 and Land Rover Discovery easily able to fit in three or more child seats. But the BMW X5 and Volvo XC90 weren’t long enough for us to fit one seat behind another in the second and third rows. The electric Tesla Model X acquitted itself very well, though.

The Vauxhall Combo Life was the biggest letdown. Although its second row is usefully wide and roomy, child seats can’t be used in the third row, making it no use for young children. 

It’s important to remember that our test is only one scenario, though; narrower or smaller seats might fit better into these cars, and it’s vital for parents to check that child seats are allowed to be used in the second and third rows of any potential purchase and to physically try out the seats before buying a car. 

Data from child seat expert, Child Seat Safety, which carries out checks in child car seats in collaboration with local councils and police forces, revealed that the number of child car seats fitted incorrectly rose from 49% to 60% over the past couple of years. They compared checking data from June 2014 to May 2016 with that from June 2016 to May 2018.  

Check out our child seat fitting tips to ensure your seat is correctly secured

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