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Posted at 07:39 AM ET, 02/04/2014

2014 Infiniti QX80: Car Seat Check


(Cars.com)

Infiniti's largest SUV is quite the beast, with loads of head- and legroom and seating for seven or eight passengers across three rows of seats, depending on if it's equipped with second-row bucket seats or a bench. Installing child-safety seats in the QX80 (previously called the QX56), was fairly uncomplicated thanks to accessible Latch anchors, but several small ergonomic issues combined to lower this SUV's Car Seat Check scores.

More Car Seat Checks

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two, one on each bucket seat

How many car seats fit in the third row? Two

What We Like

The two sets of Latch anchors in the second row's bucket seats are easy to access because they're in slits in the leather.

After removing the head restraint, the forward-facing convertible was easy to install in the second row using Latch anchors and in the third row, using the seat belt.

There was plenty of room for the rear-facing convertible and infant-safety seat in the second row. Both seats were easy to install, too.

What We Don't

A giant center console sits between the QX80's second-row bucket seats, blocking passage to the third row. The seats power tumble forward easily, but not when car seats are installed, making it difficult to access the third row. The step-in height is also uncomfortably high.

There are no Latch anchors in the third row and only one tether anchor; it's in the middle of the cargo floor, which isn't a good position since it eats into the already-limited cargo space behind the third row.

There are two tether anchors on the base of the second-row seatbacks. With the third row up, access is fine. When folded, the third-row seats block access to the tether anchors because they sit so far down the seatback. Parents should also be careful not to connect a tether strap to one of the QX80's similar-looking cargo hooks.

Although the second-row seatbacks recline, they do not slide to provide more legroom for the third row, so space is tight back there.

The booster went in easily and had plenty of room in both rows, but the buckles presented challenges. In the second row, they're recessed into the seat cushion and in the third row, they're on floppy stalks, making them difficult for kids to use independently in both situations.


(Cars.com)


(Cars.com)


(Cars.com)


(Cars.com)


(Cars.com)


(Cars.com)

Grading Scale

A: Plenty of room for the car seat and the child; doesn't impact driver or front- passenger legroom. Easy to find and connect to Latch and tether anchors. No fit issues involving head restraint or seat contouring. Easy access to the third row. 

B: Plenty of room. One fit or connection issue. Some problems accessing third row when available.

C: Marginal room. Two fit or connection issues. Difficult to access third row when available.

D: Insufficient room. Two or more fit or connection issues.

F: Does not fit or is unsafe.

About Cars.com's Car Seat Checks

Editors Jennifer Geiger and Jennifer Newman are certified child safety seat installation technicians.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide 30 infant-safety seat, a Britax Roundabout convertible seat and Graco TurboBooster seat. The front seats are adjusted for a 6-foot driver and a 5-foot-8 passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver's seat, and the infant and convertible seats are installed behind the front passenger seat.

We also install the forward-facing convertible in the second row's middle seat with the booster and infant seat in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit; a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. If there's a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible. To learn more about how we conduct our Car Seat Checks, go here .

Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat, and that Latch anchors have a weight limit of 65 pounds, including the weight of the child and the weight of the seat itself.

By Cars.com  |  07:39 AM ET, 02/04/2014

 
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