2012 Chevrolet Equinox: Car Seat Check

The Equinox may be Chevy's smallest crossover, but there's nothing compact about its backseat. The second row offers plenty of head- and legroom, and it slides forward and back to offer even more space. Those family-friendly features coupled with visible Latch anchors and wide, flat seats made installing child-safety seats a breeze.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide 30 rear-facing infant-safety seat, a Britax Roundabout convertible child-safety seat and Graco high-back TurboBooster seat.

The front seats are adjusted to a comfortable position 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 seat and convertible seats are installed behind the passenger seat. We also install the infant seat in the second row's middle seat with the booster and convertible in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit. If there’s a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible.

Here's how the Chevrolet Equinox did in Cars.com's Car Seat Check:

Latch system: There are two sets of lower Latch anchors in the outboard seats. They are exposed and there's tons of clearance between them and the seat cushion; connecting to them was straightforward.

Booster seat: The booster fit nicely on the wide, flat seat, but kids may have a problem buckling up independently: The seat belts buckles are on long, floppy straps. Our high-back booster's back also covered up the middle seat's shoulder belt, which would inconvenience that passenger. One other oddity: There's no head restraint for the middle seat. A high-back booster must be used in this seating position to support a child passenger's head and neck in a crash.

Convertible seat: The rear-facing convertible had plenty of room thanks to the sliding second-row bench. It didn't steal any front-seat passenger room. The forward-facing convertible was also easy to install. Although the head restraints are fixed, we didn't need to remove them to get the seat to fit properly. There are three tether anchors midway down the seatback, and there’s plenty of clearance around the anchors.

Infant-safety seat: There was more than enough room for the infant car seat, and it was easy to install with its traditional anchors. The second row's middle seat doubles as an armrest, however, so it's not a safe place for a rear-facing car seat. The armrest could flip down and injure the child.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

Editor's note: For three car seats -- infant-safety seat, convertible and booster seats -- to fit in a car, our criterion is that a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat.

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