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  1. #1
    CPS Technician bethng's Avatar
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    which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    My DCP is looking to get rid of her older van and downsize to a smaller vehical. She is looking at a lot of different cars/small suv's but was asking about putting 3 across in some of them. Are there any vehicals that accomodate 3 across better then others? Anything she should avoid? She has all MA/DC's in her van right now. One compass booster that only sometimes will be used. I can switch out a MA for another seat if need be....radian? One will be rear facing btw.
    Beth CPST and special needs trained Mom to Bailey ...26 yrs Skylar- 21 yrs Molly-18 yrs -and Avery -14yrs - 100+ pounds 5 stepping!

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  3. #2
    CPST and ketchup snob ketchupqueen's Avatar
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    I hear the Malibu cited as good for 3-across quite often. I think it even has 3 full sets of LATCH in recent years.

    Don't let her get a Sentra, lol. You can see in my siggy what we have to resort to for 3 across in that car (that's a Radian-- the install takes 2 people to do it efficiently-- a RSTV, which is a pain to buckle when you have to climb IN the Radian to do it, and an Uptown at the maximum allowable upright angle, also no picnic to get in...)
    CPST and Mom to Emma, 15, Bridget, 13, Maggie, 11, Katie Sue, 6, Jimmy, born May 2019,
    and Becky, waiting for us as part of our eternal family.
    Our '02 Odyssey, car seats, and seatbelts saved our lives. Now riding in a '13 Odyssey!

  4. #3
    Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus Jeanum's Avatar
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    The Chevy Malibu doesn't quite have 3 full sets of LATCH. IIRC, recent Malibu models have those overlapping lower anchors that can be used for the center or outboard, but not 3 full sets. It's the Chevy Impala that has 3 full sets of LATCH that can be used to install up to 3 carseats with LATCH, although GM vehicles have a LATCH installation weight limit (child's weight) of 48 lbs. and seatbelt installations often are more likely to achieve a successful 3 across combination due to spacing of the seatbelt buckle stalks/seatbelt anchor points closer to the sides of the car relative to the spacing of lower LATCH anchors. That said, 3 across is known to be workable in the Malibu, as well as the Impala, and in many other vehicles, given the right combination of carseats that puzzle together in the car. The forum's lengthy 3 across thread in the Carseat Chat section at http://www.car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=33226 illustrates many cars and combinations of carseats that are workable.

    ETA: One model to avoid that comes to mind is the Toyota RAV4 small SUV from approx. the 2006 or 2007 model year and newer. It has some overlapping seatbelt buckle stalks/lower anchors for the driver's side and center seating positions in the back seat that makes it very unfriendly if not impossible to install carseats side by side. It does have an optional third row available in 2006/2007 and newer versions, technically with third row seating for 2, but it's a very cramped third row and the third row also eats up most of the cargo room.
    Regards,
    Jean

    DD1 Age 16, 66" Driver's Ed
    DD2 Age 12, 64" 5 steps

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  5. #4
    Senior Community Member Spam's Avatar
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    I have an 04 pontiac grand prix that has 3 full sets of latch. Yesterday my 3 across was rf blvd, ff rn65, rf efta. Plenty of room.
    Austin 06/30/08 Tucker 07/30/2010 Elias 11/09/2011
    Brody 03/30/2013 ^Jamie^ 04/01/2015
    Rainbow coming February 2016

  6. #5
    CPST and ketchup snob ketchupqueen's Avatar
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    IMPALA! Thanks Jeanum! I had a feeling I was getting confused, lol.
    CPST and Mom to Emma, 15, Bridget, 13, Maggie, 11, Katie Sue, 6, Jimmy, born May 2019,
    and Becky, waiting for us as part of our eternal family.
    Our '02 Odyssey, car seats, and seatbelts saved our lives. Now riding in a '13 Odyssey!

  7. #6
    Member
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    [QUOTE=Jeanum;982687]

    ETA: One model to avoid that comes to mind is the Toyota RAV4 QUOTE]

    I second this!! We have a 2009 RAV4 and I have a Boulevard CS outboard. You can fit two people in the back next to it if you squeeze them but it's really uncomfortable. If I were to try to put the BV in the center it would leave zero room for anyone else to fit comfortably. And we don't have the third row but I just know it would take almost all of the cargo space. IMO, it's smaller than our 2009 Hyundai Sonata.

  8. #7
    Moderator - CPST Instructor QuassEE's Avatar
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    Re: which cars/small SUV's are good for 3 across?

    Mazda Tribute/Ford Escape is awesome for three across...outboard LATCH, and three TAs for all MYs. A lot of members here have this vehicle as either a primary or secondary vehicle. I had one for three years and loved it.

    -Nicole.

    Abbi (9, Ozzi/Olli), Aiden (11, Affix), Mason (16), & Kyle (18) in '02 Protege5 & '11 Ody TE.
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