The Audi Q5 is a mid-sized (or compact, depending on your definitions) luxury SUV with quite a following in the US. It competes with a number of other 2-row luxury crossovers like the Volvo XC60, BMW X3, Acura RDX, and Lexus RX and NX among families interested in stylish and safe transportation. The Q5 features good small and moderate overlap scores, good side impact and roof scores, and even comes with a decent level of front crash prevention software in higher trim levels.
I first took note of the Q5 when I researched the best SUVs and crossovers for surviving side impacts and realized the Q5 deserved to be close to the top of the list. It’s no surprise it’s one of the best selling SUVs in its segment. However, what I really wanted to find out was whether its reputation as an extremely cramped SUV was deserved or not when it came to installing 3 car seats in the back row. Before getting to the results, however, let’s take a look at some basic car seat safety principles.
The safest configuration we know of when it comes to vehicle safety is rear-facing. I recommend rear-facing your children long past age 1, which is the legal requirement in most states, and going well into the preschool years (ideally until 4!), before forward-facing them in harnessed convertible or combination seats (ideally until 8!). Once they outgrow their harnessed seats, it’s best to keep them restrained in high-back boosters until they’re physically and psychologically ready to use adult seat belt systems (which typically happens between 10 and 12). We want our little ones in the safest positions we know of for as long as possible to give them the greatest advantages in a collision.
Keeping these ideas in mind, I set to work to find which infant, convertible, combination, and booster seats would work best in 3 across combinations in the Audi Q5. It’s my goal to make this list the most thorough on the Internet. 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.
2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 Audi Q5
Guaranteed 3 across installations:
Clek Fllo (x3).
Clek Foonf (x3).
Combi Coccoro (x3).
Tips and Tricks:
The current and only generation of the Audi Q5 is 183 inches long and 74 inches wide, which would make you think this would be a great SUV for 3-across car seat puzzling. However, something went horribly wrong when Audi designed the back seat of the Q5, as it’s ridiculously narrow. It honestly reminds me of the BMW X3, and not in a good way. That said, if you’re patient, use your seat belts, and aren’t expecting miracles, you can definitely get a few different 3 across setups to work here.
Besides the side-to-side problem, your other issue will be leaving a survivable living space for front-row occupants once your seats are installed, especially if you’re using taller seats in rear-facing positions.
This is one of those cases where you’ll definitely want to choose the Fllo over the Foonf if you’re choosing between the two. And I’d definitely choose between those two, as the Radians will rob your front-to-back space and the Coccoro gets outgrown too quickly unless you specifically need it. If you really want to go with a Radian R120 or RXT, you’ll definitely need the angle adjuster, or you’re not going to have much front-passenger space, and it’ll be a painful experience for tall drivers or passengers.
If you find the information on car safety, recommended car seats, and car seat reviews on this car seat blog helpful, you can shop through this Amazon link for any purchases, car seat-related or not. Canadians can shop through this link for Canadian purchases.