Best Car Seat for BMW X5: Infant, Convertible & Booster Seats
Table of Contents
When choosing a car seat for your child, it could be as easy as selecting any model of the popular brands.
However, beyond just choosing any seat at all, specificity comes into play when considering the interior design of vehicle models.
The BMW X5, a luxury mid-sized SUV manufactured since 1999 with different modifications (in four generations) over the years, comes in two standard versions, the regular 5-seater and the 7-seater with extra 3rd row.
These designs make choosing a car seat a delicate decision process, so you choose what’s best for your car, hence this article, the best convertible car seat for BMW X5.
The BMW X5 is usually compared with the Tesla Model Y, which is a compact SUV for its cargo space and third row, and other features outside the scope of child car seats. This may be considered if you will be using more strollers.
Overview of the BMW X5 and Interior Design
While the X5 comes as a tempting wider option than the X3 model, the former, unfortunately, has limited legroom, which makes your choice option and decision even more delicate.
However, if you are yet to get the X5 and are looking towards having a big family car, want a wider range of car seat options, and have extra bucks to spare, you may consider the X7, which has more space and is legroom friendly (and if you are tall). Nonetheless, the X5 is a great family car.
If you are sticking with the X5 but yet to get it, it is recommended you go for the regular 5-seater X5 that comes with comfort rear seats, which is 2.5 inches wider (in the center seat) than the regular 5-seater, and over the 7-seater with a 3rd row.
On a side note, the X5 allows you to pull your front seat more forward than ‘any other car’, helping to provide more space for the rear.
Regardless, I got you covered in this article. Keep on reading to learn more about the best car seats for your BMW X5.
This article and recommendations are based on my experience researching and writing on car seats over time and other real-life recommendations from parents using this vehicle model and their car seats.
BMW X5 3 Car Seats
One popular question about the X5 and child seats is, can you fit 3 car seats in BMW X5?
While it is utterly possible because of its wide interior design (56″ wide), the vehicle seat, installation positions, and right combination options come into play in making the right choices.
Depending on the car seat you already have or the types of seats you need as a combination, here are the best-recommended practices for your X5.
- Infant seat and Convertible seat combination: In this option, you install your infant seat in the middle position as rear-facing and the convertibles on the outboard in either rf or ff. If the infant seats are two, then the second one should be behind the front passenger seat as rf and the convertible behind the driver’s seat as rf or ff.
Best seat options:
- Infant seat, booster seat, and convertible combination – in this option, the infant seat should be in the middle position as rf, the convertible behind the front passenger seat as rf or ff, and the booster seat behind the driver.
Best seat options:
- Installation method – when installing in the middle seat, you should use the seat belt. When installing on the outboard seats you should also use the seat belts instead of LATCH/ISOFIX. Though LATCH installation may be easier, there is a limit to the weight it can carry unlike the seat belts.
The BMW X5 back row seat is designed to suit the recommended practice of infants riding in the middle seats rear-facing, which is the safest place for a car seat in a vehicle.
The middle seat is equipped with seat belts and no ISOFIX system. At the same time, the outboard seats are equipped with both.
ISOFIX systems, by standard, are limited by the maximum weight they can carry, including the weight of the car seat and your baby, compared to the seat belt that has no weight limit but may be easier.
The top tether anchor points are located on the back of the three back-row seats.
You should go through your specific car seat manual to know the requirements.
Decision-making Factors to arrive at a Recommendation
The factors, among other considerations, put together to recommend car seats for your X5 include:
- Height clearance and footprint depth of car seats – considering leg room in the back row
- Best seat position for a car seat in X5 – considering driver and front passenger seats
- 3 car seats across – in rear row of your BMW X5 – best choice
- 2 car seats and an adult – install middle position with seat belt and not LATCH/ISOFIX; *caveat, if you wouldn’t be switching car often, install your car seat base in the middle with the seat belt – you make this effort once only
- LATCH system vs Seatbelt installation in X5 – safer option?
- Safety of car seats
- Ease of installation
- Car seat features (ease-of-use)
- Family size
- Car seat dimensions
- Car seat weight
Here is a quick insight into the car seats recommended for your BMW X5 as infant, convertible, and booster seats:
Infant Car Seats:
Convertible Car Seats:
Belt-positioning Booster Seats:
At A Glance, The Top Infant, Convertible, & Booster Seat For BMW X5
Best Infant Seat
Best Convertible Seat
From experience with other car seats review, and most recently the one on the best car seat for BMW X3 and a latter, BMW X1, Graco SlimFit3 LX has always been my most recommended convertible car seat across vehicle models.
That was different for the X3, where the Diono Radian® 3RXT® SafePlus™ took the top spot; however, the norm returns in the X5 model.
The Graco SlimFit3 LX 3-in-1 takes the lead over the Radian 3RXT SafePlus for the X5 simply for its double suitability as rf and ff in a BMW X5.
- It is super slim – the Graco SlimFit3 LX measures 16.7″ wide against its closest rival, the Diono Radian 3RXT+ at 17″. Despite this close call, it still makes a significant difference when you consider three car seats in a row, the ISOFIX points, and ease of installation.
- Dimension – the SlimFit3 LX measures 20.7″D x 24.5″H x 16.7″W as against the Diono Radian 3RXT+ at 16″D x 28.5″H x 17″W. At this height (H) difference, the former saves more space when rear-facing if you so choose to use a convertible seat from the get-go. This is considered for the front passenger and driver seats. However, the latter has more edge when forward-facing due to its low footprint depth of 16″D and the little legroom in the back row.
- Weight – The SlimFit3 LX is significantly lighter than the Diono, with a difference of 12.8 pounds (19.2 pounds and 32 pounds respectively). This is important if you will often be switching between vehicles.
- Pricing – Graco car seats are more pocket friendly when it comes to pricing and quality, while Diono is more about aesthetics and luxury. The Radian 3RXT+ is relatively more expensive than the SlimFit3 LX.
- Seat modes – as a 3-in-1 convertible child seat, you can use it as rf for your newborn up to a booster seat as they grow. As a matter of fact, it grows with your child till its expiry in ten years.
Nonetheless, you should still read on to make a decision based on your conviction.
Now in Detail
Before giving details about each car seat, you should have an insight into what makes a car seat fit for a car, your child, and you as a parent. You need to know all these before buying a car seat and not rush into making a decision.
You can skip to the sections you want here:
Safety Ratings of Car Seats
What else is the purpose of a car seat if not to keep your precious little one safe in the eventuality of a car crash?
While many parents spend so much time studying car seat safety ratings which is a very good idea, much of this has been taken care of by the very stringent federal safety requirement of manufacturers for every single car seat before they are sold on the US market.
Therefore, it is safe to say that all car seats sold on the market are SAFE.
Beyond this, many car seat manufacturers go over and beyond to include more safety features to give you extra peace of mind in their products.
Nonetheless, the most important thing, rather, to take note of and truly ensure a car seat serves its purpose is to make sure it is properly and securely installed in your vehicle from the get-go.
Ease of Installation
No matter the safety rating of a car seat, or the safety features it may carry, if it is not properly installed, you stand at a critical risk of car seat failure in an accident.
According to NHSTA, 59% of car seats are not correctly installed. This leads to car seat injuries or even death in a car crash.
As such, you should take note of the installation features when making a choice. Many manufacturers include special features to make installation super easy and straightforward.
Nonetheless, you may require a little more effort on your end to ensure a tight and proper installation.
You can visit a car seat inspection clinic (or a CPST) in your city to help you.
Most parents’ reason for picking the BMW X5 is the interior size which transforms to a good family car. While the interior dimension may not always mean a good family car, other factors like legroom, installation points, and vehicle seat design counts significantly.
Though the X5 lags when it comes to legroom, this factor was considered in making the right car seat recommendation that overcomes this.
On the other hand, depending on the size of your family, you want to consider how many car seats you may want in your vehicle and the size of these car seats.
If you have a child or two and don’t plan to get more anytime soon, you can go for a regular seat size that will fit two and an adult.
If you have up to 3 children, you will need three slim car seats that will fit perfectly in your X5.
Car Seat Features (Ease-of-Use)
This is a secondary factor when choosing a car seat to buy. This covers extra convenience, and if you are not a first-time parent, you may already be used to using one. As such, this may not influence your decision much.
Ease of use features includes an easy-to-remove seat cover, easy-to-clean, machine-washable, easy-to-adjust harness, recline feature, cups, and lots more.
Weight and Dimensions of Car Seat
You should consider this if you will often be switching between cars. You want a car seat that isn’t so heavy to lift.
Not to worry, infant seats are usually lightweight. Convertibles are not so lightweight, but among the slim fits, you can find lightweight ones.
Due to the peculiarity of the BMW X5 in the back row legroom, you need a convertible car seat that measures no more than 20″ in footprint depth (D) for convertibles.
Also, when considering having three car seats in your X5, the width (W) comes into play. The slimmer the seat, the better chance you will fit three across (less than 18″).
If you will be using a convertible car seat for your newborn, that means as rear-facing, you want to consider the height (H). 25″ is a reasonable height for a convertible car seat you will use in RF, and that wouldn’t affect the front passenger and driver seats.
This is another significant factor to consider. Car seats have expiry dates.
Car seat expiration varies from 6 years to 10 years, and in rare cases, 12 years, depending on brand and model.
You can read on how to check if your car seat is expired and the expiration dates for the following car seat brands (all models):
- Britax expiration
- Cosco expiration
- Diono expiration
- Evenflo expiration
- Graco expiration
- Safety 1st expiration
This article comprehensively reviews the best baby, convertible, and booster car seats for BMW X5.
You can skip to the sections you want here:
Best Infant Car Seats for BMW X5
1. Doona Infant Car Seat & Stroller
For a BMW X5 with spacious cargo, the Doona infant car seat and stroller combo is a perfect choice for your vehicle.
In fact, the build is such that it converts from a car seat to a stroller and vice-versa in just seconds and is lightweight. You don’t need to use your cargo space, except maybe for your other strollers.
Why Doona Infant Car Seat?
|Doona Infant Seat & Stroller||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
2. Chicco KeyFit 35 Infant Car Seat
The Chicco KeyFit 35, a member of the KeyFit series – basic KeyFit, KeyFit 30, and KeyFit 35 – is the premium model of this series featuring an extended usage of up to 35 lbs. and other premium safety and ease-of-use features like an anti-rebound bar, extended leg-room for your baby, and full-coverage UPF 50+ canopy for the ClearTex variant.
The Chicco KeyFit series have a common dimension of 28″D x 24″H x 16.5″W; therefore, any will fit three across, but because of the depth, it may affect the front passenger seat. The middle seat will be the best position to install this.
While the KeyFit and KeyFit 30 have a height limit of 30″, the KeyFit 35 has an extended limit of 32″.
Related: Chicco KeyFit 35 vs 30.
Why Chicco KeyFit 35 Infant Seat for X5?
|Chicco KeyFit 35||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
3. Uppababy Mesa Infant Car Seat
If you will be needing a stroller for your Apple more often, the Uppababy Mesa is just about it for you and your BMW X5, just after the Doona.
What gives it an edge is its compatibility with a variety of strollers, including UPPAbaby strollers and others, with and without adaptors.
With your trunk space, you have no worries storing your strollers while you go on a drive with your precious one.
However, you want to be selective among these recommendations as it may not fit really well if you are not installing it in the middle seat. Nonetheless, you can fit 2 or 3 car seats in the rear row.
Why Uppababy Mesa Infant Seat for X5?
|UPPAbaby Mesa Infant Seat||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
Best Convertible Car Seats for BMW X5
While many parents choose to start with infant seats, which can, however, be reused when they have a newborn within the expiry period, many others choose to start with a convertible car seat.
A convertible is a car seat that can be used in two or more modes, usually rear-facing, forward-facing, and as a booster seat.
This section covers the recommended convertible car seats for your BMW X5.
1. Graco SlimFit3 LX 3-in-1 Car Seat – Perfect Choice - Fits 3 Across
The SlimFit3 LX car seat (review) is a space-saving car seat that fits three perfectly across the back seat.
Even though the BMW X5 has a wide interior design and can occupy wider car seats, the SlimFit3 takes the top spot as the best convertible car seat for BMW X5 for several combined factors that best suit the X5 interior design.
The SlimFit3 LX can be used in 3 seat modes – rear-facing (min. 5 lbs.; max. 40 lbs.), forward-facing (min. 22 lbs.; max. 65 lbs.), highback booster seat (min. 40 lbs.; max. 100 lbs.).
Why Graco SlimFit3 LX for X5?
|Graco SlimFit3 LX 3-in-1||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
2. Diono Radian® 3RXT® SafePlus™ – Fits 3 Across
The Radian 3RXT settled as second simply for the seat height at 28.5″H, which will affect the front passenger and driver seats when rf behind them.
However, the seat depth gives it an edge as a better option when ff on the outboard seats because of the leg room space it offers at 16” D (front to back).
Why Diono Radian® 3RXT® SafePlus™?
|Diono Radian 3RXT+||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
Britax One4Life all-in-1 Car Seat
The Britax One4Life trails behind the two slimmest convertible car seats on the market. What saves it a space on this list is the legroom-friendly footprint depth it comes with, at 19.5″D, and the super simple ClickTight belt installation.
Beyond these, the seat is not slim. But for the wide interior space of your BMW X5, this car seat is the perfect choice for a wide seat when you need only two seats in your vehicle.
Why Britax One4Life?
|Britax One4Life all-in-1||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
4. Clek Foonf 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat - Fits 3 Across
The Clek Foonf is a 2-in-1 convertible car seat that can be used in rear-facing and forward-facing, and with an extended usage when RF, up to 50 lbs.
Measuring 16.9 in. wide, the Clek Foonf will fit for 3 across your BMW X5.
However, the Clek Foonf weighs 33 lbs., which is very heavy, though this is because of its metal-tank build which is of a solid metal substructure.
Nonetheless, what makes the Clek Foonf to this list is its sitting height (from the base). The car seat is perfect in your X5 as a forward-facing seat, and for its height, your child can easily see outside. This reason alone makes it a choice car seat for many proud X5 parents.
PROS & CONS
Best Booster Seats for BMW X5
While an all-in-one convertible car seat saves you money in the long run, with the option of using the booster seat mode later in the future, the need for a booster seat may come up anytime earlier, and that may be the time to get one.
The following are excellent booster seats for X5 that fits 3 across and will fit as a third seat with other slim car seats already installed.
1. Graco TurboBooster LX Highback Booster Seat
The Graco TurboBooster LX is the slimmest 2-in-1 booster seat that will fit as a third car seat when you need any three seats across in your BMW X5.
Measuring 16.2″ wide, it is super slim and will fit along any car seat recommended in this article. As a 2-in-1 booster seat, it can be used as a highback booster seat and then transformed into backless mode as your child.
This wins it the top spot as the best booster seat for your X5.
Why TurboBooster LX?
|Graco TurboBooster LX||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
2. Peg Perego Viaggio 2-3 Shuttle Plus Booster Seat
The Peg Perego Viaggio 2-3 Shuttle Plus is an Italian-made 2-in-1 Booster seat just like the Graco TurboBooster LX.
What makes the seat stand out is the diverse safety, installation, and ease-of-use features for a booster seat.
However, these premium features do not come cheap. What even gives it more edge is its extended weight limit of 120 lbs., height limit of 63″, and lifespan of 12 years.
Fortunately, it measures 17″ and will therefore fit three across or as a third seat in your X5.
Why Peg Perego Viaggio 2-3 Shuttle Plus Booster Seat?
|Viaggio 2-3 Shuttle Plus||Overview||Specifications||Features|
PROS & CONS
Final Thoughts and Recommendation
While the BMW X5 is a luxury SUV with a wide interior, the design still gives it a somewhat limited option as to what car seat will fit well.
As a final recommendation, the car seats listed in this article are good choices that overcome those limitations. Here are my final thoughts and recommendation to solidify your decision-making:
If you are a new parent planning to get the BMW X5 as a family car and love wider and bigger car seats from a specific brand, you may consider the X7 for extra bucks.
If you are sticking to the X5 or already have one, you have many great options to select from.
If you need a convertible seat from the get-go for your newborn rear-facing, the Graco SlimFit3 LX is your best choice.
If you need a convertible seat to use from forward-facing, the Diono Radian 3RXT Safe+ is a better option.
If you need an infant seat and a stroller, the Doona infant car seat & stroller is your best bet.
If you need three combinations of seats, any combination of SlimFit3 LX, Radian 3RXT+, and KeyFit35 will be perfect.
If you need a third car seat as a booster, the TurboBooster is a good deal.
If you need three across, either of these seats will be excellent. Consider the SlimFit3 LX over the Radian 3RXT+ if rf.