3 Across Installations: Which Car Seats Fit a Mercedes E-Class?

The Mercedes E-Class sedan is the safest car you can buy today in the United States as measured by side impact resistance ratings, and one of the three safest cars you can buy as measured by actual driver death rates. I’ve written about side impact ratings and ranked the best cars for surviving side collisions here, as well as the safest cars for families in terms of driver survival here, and the E-Class tops the side impact list today and has topped the driver survival studies in the past.

Since this blog is all about safety, this makes the E-Class one of my favorite cars to talk about. It competes with other large luxury cars like the Audi A6, Volvo S80,, Acura RSX, and BMW 5-series, as well as with its smaller sibling the C-Class. Lots of folks buy it because of the prestige it commands, but it’s also a good family car if, like me, your absolute priority is keeping your little ones safe. Let’s see how it does when it comes to 3 across car seat compatibility. First, though, it’s always worth reviewing best practices in terms of which kinds of seats should be used and when.

First of all, car seat safety begins with rear-facing. You’ll want to keep infants and very young children rear-facing as long as possible (ideally until 4!), before forward-facing them in harnessed convertible or combination seats (ideally until 8!), and then keeping them in high-back boosters until they’re ready to use adult seat belt systems (which typically happens between 10 and 12). The goal is to keep your little ones safely restrained to give them the best odds of surviving a crash, and these recommendations are designed with survival in mind.

With those guiding principles in mind, I went about testing the E-Class sedans I had access to (an E 350) with convertible, infant, and combination seats to see which 3 across combinations were most feasible. Fortunately, there are several combinations that will work with the E-Class. If you find the list helpful when shopping for car seats, you can shop through my Amazon link below. I’ll add more seats as I test them over time.

You can access the complete 3 across guide for every vehicle here and the complete list of recommended seats here. The Canadian car seat guide is here. 3 across car seat images are courtesy of Wikipedia.

2017 Mercedes E-Class (W213)

Guaranteed 3 across installations:

Clek Fllo (x3).

Clek Foonf (x3).

Diono Radian R120 (x3).

Diono Radian RXT (x3).

Diono Radian R100 (x3).

Chicco KeyFit 30 (x3).

Graco Size4Me 65 (x3).

Graco Contender (x3).

Combi Coccoro (x3).

Clek Fllo, Diono Radian / RXT, Diono Radian / RXT.

Clek Fllo,Graco Size4Me 65, Graco Size4Me 65.

Clek Fllo, Graco Size4Me 65, Diono Radian / RXT.

Tips and Tricks:

The current generation of the Mercedes E-Class is just under 194 inches long and 73 inches wide, which is almost identical to its dimensions in the previous generation. It’s also  rather comparable to what you’re going to see in most other high-end (but not super-high-end) luxury cars on the market right now (e.g., the 5 Series, the A6, Q70, etc). As with many other luxury cars, in other words, you’re not going to have too much space to work with, although you’ll definitely have enough for some of the more common seat arrangements.

With that in mind, you can still get a number of solid installations, especially if you make use of your seat belts instead of the LATCH systems. To make things as easy as possible, I’d just go with the Fllo for everything rear-facing and a Radian or Graco seat for forward-facing, given their narrowness.

e350-publicdomain2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 Mercedes E-Class (W212)

Guaranteed 3 across installations:

Clek Fllo (x3).

Clek Foonf (x3).

Diono Radian R120 (x3).

Diono Radian RXT (x3).

Diono Radian R100 (x3).

Graco Size4Me 65 (x3).

Graco Contender (x3).

Combi Coccoro (x3).

Clek Fllo, Diono Radian / RXT, Diono Radian / RXT.

Clek Fllo,Graco Size4Me 65, Graco Size4Me 65.

Clek Fllo, Graco Size4Me 65, Diono Radian / RXT.

Tips and Tricks:

The W212 generation of the Mercedes E-Class is 192 inches long and 73 inches wide, which is about what you can expect in most mid-sized family cars (think Ford Fusion), rather than large ones (e.g., a Ford Taurus). As with many other luxury cars, in other words, you’re not going to have too much space to work with, although you’ll definitely have enough for some of the more common seat arrangements. Practically-speaking, though, your interior space will be about identical to that of an Accord or a Camry.

With that in mind, you can still get a number of solid installations, especially if you make use of your seat belts instead of the LATCH systems. To make things as easy as possible, I’d just go with the Fllo for everything rear-facing and a Radian or Graco seat for forward-facing, given their narrowness.

If you find the information on car safety, recommended car seats, and car seat reviews on this car seat blog helpful, you can bookmark and shop through this Amazon link. Canadians can bookmark and shop through this link.

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