By Jennifer Newman on August 2, 2012
The 2012 BMW M6 convertible is a high-performance version of the 6 Series. From its turbocharged V-8 engine to its highly bolstered seats, nearly everything about this soft-top convertible screams aggressive. What it doesn't say is family car, but since this four-seater has a backseat, we attempted to install child-safety seats in it.
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 convertible seat 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. If there's a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible.
Here's how the 2012 M6 convertible did in Cars.com's Car Seat Check:
Latch system: There are two sets of lower Latch anchors in the M6's backseat. They're hard to get at because they're buried deeply between the stiff back and bottom seat cushions. The M6 convertible doesn't have tether anchors, and isn't required to since it's a convertible.
Booster seat: The rear seat bolsters are so large that the cushions pushed our high-back booster off-kilter toward the middle of the backseat. The fixed head restraints also pushed the booster's back forward into an upright angle. A no-back booster might fit better in the convertible. The M6's seat belt buckle is on a stable base, making buckling up easier for kids.
Convertible seat: The forward-facing convertible didn't fit because of the bolstered backseat. Eighty percent of a car seat needs to touch the bottom and back cushions when installed, but the forward convertible wasn't able to sit flat against the seatback or bottom because they're severely angled. The car seat's base hung off the seat cushion because the fixed head restraint pushed it forward.
Infant-safety seat: This rear-facing car seat ate up so much space in the M6 convertible that we had to move the front passenger seat forward several inches and set the seatback to an uncomfortable upright position. This left our unlucky tester with about an inch of space between her forehead and the sun visor.
How many car seats fit in the second row? Two, but they'd have to be rear-facing convertibles.
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.
Assistant Managing Editor Jennifer Newman is a certified car-seat technician. A mom of two, she owns a 2013 Subaru Outback crammed with sports gear. Email Jennifer