Parenting a young family isn’t easy under the best of circumstances. When you’re parenting two or three children, it can be quite the challenge—especially if they’re all in car seats! For most parents in these situations, the safety of their young children is the primary focus. And that safety means car seats that are secure and provide the ultimate protection. But how does a dutiful parent manage that when they require three car seats? The best way is to ensure they’re driving one of the best cars for 3 car seats.
The Growing Family Dilemma
Almost any vehicle can safely transport a child in a car seat, and many can handle two comfortably. But three? To install three car seats properly, a car or truck must first have ample room for the whole family. Second will be the vehicle’s design, specifically the correct anchoring systems for modern car seats. Finding a car with those features is essential, but most families also want fuel efficiency, comfort, and overall vehicle safety. Fortunately, there are numerous SUVs that meet all these needs and more.
Before we reveal our top three picks, it’s important for parents to understand what constitutes a safe and secure car seat setup.
Car Seat Safety and Regulations
Car seat regulations vary by state, so parents need to know their state’s laws regarding child passenger safety. It’s also important to note that as children grow, the size and configuration of the proper car seat will change. To help families choose the best car for three car seats, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides up-to-date information and a handy car seat selector to simplify things.
Properly securing car seats is the priority, and the good news is that nearly every vehicle and car seat made in the last 20 years features the LATCH system. LATCH stands for Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children, and it’s the standard for proper car seat security. The restraint system makes installing and removing car seats straightforward and, most of all, secures the seats for the ultimate protection.
Best Car for Three Car Seats
Not surprisingly, the best car for 3 car seats probably isn’t a car at all. After all, parents need plenty of room, and that often requires an SUV or van. But just because the best vehicles for 3 car seats are larger doesn’t mean families must sacrifice fuel economy and the creature comforts they want. So what vehicles will take 3 car seats and provide the essentials families want most?
The Ford Explorer features a 2.3 Liter 4 Cylinder engine with plenty of horsepower, and the 10 Speed SelectShift Automatic transmission makes driving a breeze. Smooth handling and fuel economy of around 27 mpg make the Explorer the ultimate vehicle for safe and enjoyable family trips. Technology features like Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, and an impressive six-speaker sound system will keep parents and kids entertained on even the longest excursions. Ford also includes advanced safety features like automatic braking, lane-keeping assist, and more to keep the whole family safe and sound.
The Chevrolet Equinox relies on a 1.5 Liter 4 Cylinder with 170 hp to deliver up to 32 mpg while providing plenty of pep. The 6-speed transmission makes driving the family around comfortable, and the modern styling gives the SUV a sporty look. Even with three car seats, the Equinox provides plenty of cargo room for gear and adult passengers. And the Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system with Bluetooth, WiFi, and numerous speakers keeps everyone entertained. Chevrolet builds the Equinox with the latest safety features like StabiliTrak, a proprietary airbag system, and more to give parents peace of mind.
A family staple for decades, the Dodge Caravan has come a long way over its four-decade lifespan. The modern Caravans feature a 3.6 Liter V6 that delivers 283 hp—not your father’s family car anymore! The front-wheel drive and 6-speed transmission combine for a budget-friendly 25 mpg and a smooth ride. The 2nd and 3rd row Stow ‘n Go seats provide plenty of flexibility, and the voice-activated Uconnect entertainment system keeps everyone happy. Designed to be the ultimate family ride, the Caravan has all the latest safety features, from stability control to ABS.
Ensuring the safety of children in car seats means more than having the right seat for the job and a vehicle that will fit the entire family. Driving safety for parents and children requires a comfortable and easy-to-manage driving experience. Parents with three kids in the back need all the help they can get to keep their eyes on the road, and our top three kid-friendly cars offer plenty of it!
Shopping for the Best Car for 3 Car Seats
If possible, take your car seats with you when you go car shopping. Keep in mind the sizes and configurations of your car seats will change as the children grow. Remember that the best family cars for 3 car seats are SUVs and minivans with sufficient space to install all three across a rear seat. Once you’ve checked the essential boxes, the rest is up to you. Pick your favorites, take them for a test drive, and get ready to enjoy the ultimate family ride.
Car Time Supercenter is a local family-owned dealership with a large inventory of quality used cars, flexible financing, and hometown service. The perfect place to find your next family vehicle.
There are good reasons people will buy their next used car in Tucson from Car Time Supercenter. But I think we are one of the most trusted used car dealerships mainly because we treat everyone like family. My family has provided quality, dependable local used cars to Tucson customers since 1984, and I’m proud to be a part of our continued success.
Like many family-owned businesses, I grew up going to work with my dad. Falling in love with cars was natural because of my father’s passion, and eventually, I came to love the car business just like him. I officially joined the Car Time Supercenter team in 2012, starting in the finance department. Over the past decade, I’ve learned the used car business and how to treat customers from my family and industry resources.
Today, I oversee marketing, social media, inventory, and reconditioning, so I play an essential role in delivering local Tucson used car buyers the best experience possible. I also help our family business keep up with the times while providing old-fashioned customer service. From attending NADA classes to becoming Allstate certified for back-end products, I continue to learn and add skills to serve our customers better.