Best electric cars for three child car seats
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...
The future is electric, but at the time of our test there was only one battery-powered car that could take more than two child car seats.
Tesla Model X
The Model X can be configured with five, six or seven seats. The most practical option for larger families is six seats, because children can walk between the second row to get to the rearmost seats.
All four rear seats have Isofix mounts and the second-row chairs recline and slide forwards, so there’s enough room to fit one seat behind another. We were able to fit the Halfords seat and the Maxi Cosi AxissFix in the third row and could secure the latter with either the top tether point or the support foot. Squeezing bulky seats back there was a struggle, though.
New innovation: child seat monitoring apps
There are baby monitoring mirrors, like the one pictured in the main image for our feature, and also baby monitoring cameras. However, the latter could be too distracting for a driver, so we prefer apps that only disturb you if there’s a problem.
German child seat maker Cybex has introduced a monitoring system that lets parents know if there’s a problem with their child or their car seat during journeys. The SensorSafe system is standard on Cybex’s Platinum and Gold ranges of i-Size seats.
It consists of a clip that is attached to the harness and sends an alert to the parent’s mobile phone via an app if the child has slipped out of the seat’s harness, lets you know if the temperature in the car is too hot or cold for the child and alerts you when the child has been in the car seat for two hours, reminding you to take a break from your journey.
The alerts are sent via Bluetooth on an Android and Apple-compatible app, which also contains seat installation videos, answers to frequently asked questions and other information.
The Cybex Sirona Z i-Size car seat with SensorSafe technology costs £310.
If you don’t want to change your child’s car seat, there are standalone monitoring straps, including the Car Seat Guardian Bluebeep, which also attaches to the harness of a Group 1 child seat. It sends information to the parent’s smartphone about whether the child is safely strapped in or has got out of the harness. It also sends a reminder if you’ve left the child alone in the car.