Baby Car Seats

Baby Car Seats

Just learned that the Tesla S (as well as the Tesla X for that matter) is designed with a second row latch system for three baby car seats. This is great news for me, since the only second row cars on the market that have three sets of latches seem to be minivans.

jeeps17 | 10 October 2012

I cannot find the quote, but I remember reading that when using three baby seats simultaneously, the two side seats can use the LATCH anchors, while the middle one uses the seatbelt.

Indeed, very practical!

olanmills | 10 October 2012

GM cars have LATCH anchors, so there are definitely vehicles out there with LATCH besides minivans.

Volker.Berlin | 11 October 2012

I cannot find the quote, but I remember reading that when using three baby seats simultaneously, the two side seats can use the LATCH anchors, while the middle one uses the seatbelt. (jeeps17)

It's in the "Model S Safety Information", page 9:

gregv64 | 11 October 2012

All cars are required to have LATCH. Very few have 3 sets of lower anchors. The Model S is strange in this way. While it does indeed have 3 sets of lower anchors, according to the manual: "Although LATCH anchorage points are provided at all three rear seating positions, you can only use two at the same time. To seat three children, use a non LATCH-retained child safety seat in the middle."

No idea why.

gregv64 | 11 October 2012

Ah, I see. It only has 5 anchors, not 6. You can have seats on the right side and center, but the left side and center share an anchor, so you can't have both at once.

saftsuse | 4 December 2012

Why don't they put the latch in the back where the two child seats is supposed to be? It would be much more convenient. Then you can select the brand and size that suits YOUR children rathr than standard seats that suits no one or very few.

EK | 4 December 2012

Since we are on this topic.
Has anyone put a rearward facing seat (no2, 9-18 or 2-25kg) in a Model S ? And if so, what type and how is the space for the front seat?

Volker.Berlin | 4 December 2012

This image came to my mind... No idea whether it helps you any, but it looks nice:

jchangyy | 4 December 2012

Acura MDX has 3 latch inserts on 2nd row seat.

EK | 4 December 2012

Nice, shows that there is space for 3 seats at once.

But as for my comment, I was wondering about the legroom in front seats if the chairs face the other way.

rallykeeper | 4 December 2012

@EK -- I haven't tested it, but I do have the same carseat shown in the picture -- the Combi Cocorro. It's one of the most compact seats out there and I bought it to fit in my MINI Cooper.

Rear-facing in the MINI is pretty tight for front legroom. I'm 5' 7" and it was even tight for me. Front-facing was fine, btw.

Since I think the S has somewhat more seat-to-seat room than the MINI (I can't seem to find that dimension though), I'd expect it to be slightly more comfortable. However, if you're six inches taller than me with long legs, it might be tight.

As with any sedan or smaller car, I doubt a lot of other car seats would work terribly well (i.e., don't plan on using a Britax).

JohnQ | 4 December 2012

You can tell that a baby has never occupied any of those seats :-)
But they sure look nice against the tan interior.

Brian H | 4 December 2012

I believe jumpseats are quite different; these resemble racing seats, with 5-point harness etc. Elon/TM put a lot of attention on them; he has triplet and twin boys!

RAUDIKAL | 23 August 2014

We took delivery of our Model S in late June. We have two children in car seats... my 7 year old is in a high back booster and my 5 year old is in a 5 point harness convertible car seat which would be used as a booster seat later. In the past, the children traveled in our MB R350 but I don't want to give up the Model S for the R350 to take the kids somewhere, so I decided to have car seats in my Model S.
For the Model S, we looked for a narrow 5 point harness car seat and a narrow high back booster so the center seat can still be used if/when needed. We have liked Britax car seats in the past but searched for a narrower seat and ordered a Radian RXT Convertible 5 point harness car seat and a Britax Parkway SGL for the booster. The Britax Parkway SGL was simple to install and is well suited for our 7 year old. The Radian RXT was heavy and cumbersome to install. The LATCH straps were short so I had to sit in the car seat and push on the car seat in order to attach the LATCH straps. There is one upper tether strap on the Radian RXT which has to be routed over the headrest which compresses the headrest. The height of the backrest also limited my visibility out of the rear window. The Radian is well built and a quality product but I feel that it is over engineered. We replaced the Radian RXT with a Britax Frontier 90. It was simple to install and has a upper tether that routes around the headrest. The Britax is slightly wider than the Radian RXT but like it better.

sule | 23 August 2014

I just checked my car. Here is what it has:

At the back of the seat there are three latches for the top seat straps.

In the front there are 5 anchor points that make it easy to have:

a) one seat at any position (left, middle, right)

b) two seats: one in the right and one in either middle or left.

c) two seats sharing one anchor point (if possible) in the left and middle positions

d) three seats with the left and middle sharing the anchor point between them, if possible.

e) three seats with left and right using LATCH and the one in the middle using regular seat belts.

You do have to be cautious about the width of these seats. Some are really wide and you may not be able to fit three of those in the car nicely. I have a toddler sear in the right and wanted to use two boosters (middle, left) but could not nicely as they would sit on the higher edges of the Tesla bench and would not be level.

jchasteen | 18 December 2014

I just picked up my Model S this past weekend and I'm waiting on an official answer from Tesla wrt LATCH anchors. During the buying process I was told all Model S vehicles have LATCH in all 3 rear positions. This is not true. Pages 11 - 12 of the Model S Quick Guide state:

"Some vehicles do not have the center LATCH (ISOFIX) position, as indicated by the lack of an identification button located on the seat back in the center position. If this is the case, do not install a LATCH (ISOFIX) child seat in the center position".

My car did not have the ID button, but did have a 5th LATCH anchor I could feel and hook a seat up with. To reiterate a previous post - Per page 11, if you have 3 LATCH positions, you cannot put two child seats next two each other via LATCH in the center and driver side positions - this is because the driver side inboard position and center position share the same anchor. For center LATCH equipped vehicles there are 5 anchors not 6. For non-center LATCH equipped vehicles there are 4 anchors.

Another Model S in the showroom did not have the 5th LATCH anchor in the center position (and did not have the ID button). No one has been able to explain why one vehicle has it and another does not. I don't know of any option selection that would add or delete these. I also want clarification about why my vehicle has the additional 5th center LATCH anchor but does not have the ID button on the seat indicating it is there. According to the manual I should not use it if there is no ID button in the center.

Tesla is looking into this and I'll post their response. The ability to hookup LATCH in the center seat was a good selling point for me as the Model S is one of a handful of vehicles to offer it in the center position (and the only sedan I found that did).

Can anyone confirm they have a LATCH ID button on the center seat above the 5th anchor? It's typically on the leather right above the anchor itself. Mine has 4 ID buttons corresponding only to the outboard positions.

jchasteen | 6 January 2015

Can anyone confirm their Model S has 5 LATCH ID buttons on the rear seat? Not the LATCH anchor itself but does anyone's car have the required ID button that signals the 5th (middle seat) LATCH anchor is there?

My Tesla owners advisor has been unable to get an answer and provide the response below this morning:

"No luck…

I guess the safest recommendation would be to treat your Model S as if there were not a center latch. However, based on your description it does sound as if it were there. Perhaps if you ever need to take it in for service they can verify if it is there or not.

Again, I am sorry for this confusion. If I can get more clarity I will let you know.


For all I know my car could have the anchor there, but maybe it's not actually welded in place properly on my version for some reason and therefore there's no ID button on the seat - which could be quite dangerous. My better guess is Tesla only made 1 sku for rear seats - and none of them have a 5th ID button on them - regardless if the proper LATCH anchor is actually behind it or not. If someone can confirm they have 5 ID buttons on the seat leather then it proves this theory wrong. I've got a two month old that I want in the center position hooked to a proper LATCH anchor.

jchasteen | 6 January 2015

And by the way - to create even more confusion which I pointed out to Tesla - the physical Model S quick guide is different from the latest V6.0_DAS electronic manual viewable from "My Dashboard" in my portal at the Tesla website. This latest electronic manual clearly states on page 27 that children CANNOT be hooked up to LATCH in the center position. Maybe they changed it for the latest cars? If so, why?

sip | 17 June 2015

My model S was delivered in March 2015 and I also only have the 4 latch button markers on the L&R sides. There is no marker in the center. This is unfortunate as with a newborn on the way, we're always told to install the seat in the center.

kirk | 17 June 2015

I'm pretty sure I have installed car seats (in other vehicles) in the center using the latch connectors from the left and right seats if that makes sense.

1PT1 GEE | 17 June 2015

If the left and right side latches are taken, then you can install the 3rd seat with the seatbelt. As long as they all fit across....