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  #1  
Old 06-15-2002, 10:57 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 118
Safety of third row seat in 124 wagon?

We have a '92 W124 300TE 4Matic wagon with the third row rear-facing seat. We have two kids, (5 & 3), who spend a lot of time in those seats, (in appropriate car/booster seats), by themselves or as part of a carload of friends. We limit the use of the rear-facing seats to around town, (though local traffic still moves awfully fast), but we're still concerned about the kids' safety in the event of a rear end collision. Were there ever any crash test ratings for this? It seems that a trunk/wayback area is often a crumple zone, but why would MB put a seat clearly made for kids in such a dangerous location if it wasn't safe at reasonable speeds?? Any of you have similar concerns? I know other makes have them too, (Audi, Volvo, Ford . . ), but I still wonder about our MB's safety limits. Any info will be very much apreciated. Thanks.


1962 MB 220SEb (Fintail) Sedan, Robin's Egg Blue, 4 on the Tree
1992 MB 300TE 4Matic Wagon, Black, Auto
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon, 4wd, Green, 5 Speed

1963 Vespa VNB, 125, 3 speed
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  #2  
Old 06-16-2002, 04:24 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
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This is a case of having to make your own judgement. It is VITALLY important that all of you have your seatbelts on. In that rear-facing seat, your children will have TERRIFIC protection in the event of a frontal impact. Infant seats are designed to face the rear of the car so that a frontal impact (generally more force) will be spread over the entire body, instead of the seatbelt points. The same principle applies...

In the case of being rear-ended, I would rather that my kids were in the "second" or rear seat, of course. But, if they are in the rear-most wagon seat, it is so important that they are buckled in, or they would surely be ejected into the other car.

Given the length of the MB wagon floor and the structural strength surrounding the occupant area, I would allow kids to ride back there, but only in the instance of where the rear seat was full.
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  #3  
Old 06-23-2002, 03:25 PM
A. Rosich's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
Posts: 883
Third row rear facing seat safety, T-modell

As said before, it is all matter of judgment, chance and proper use.

For a full frontal impact, the rear facing seat is the safest area in the car for kids.

For a rear impact, well, your kids are definitely seated in part of the rear crumple zone (not a very happy thought).

I don't have any kids, but I have owned Mercedes-Benz station wagons for 19 years, all of them fitted with the third row rear-facing seats.

I know M-B hace taken special considerations in the safety design issues for this area. For example, the fuel tank, which is located inmediantly below the rear facing seat, is design to drop in the event of a rear collision. Also, the rear crumple zone is designed differently from the sedan's deformation pattern.

An important issue I would check out with your M-B dealer is about the use of boolters seats on the third row seat. As I understand, this seat was never designed to hold those type of devices, nor carry very small children.

I remember that the Owner's manual on my old W123T (300TD) talked about a certain height limit (both ways) for rear facing seat occupants. If the occupant's height was lower or higher than the range specified, the Manual stressed the possibility of extremely high injury in the event of an accident.

If I remember correctly, the height specified matched the height of average children between the ages of 6 and 12. Interestingly enough, the manuals of my W124Ts never mentioned the issue.

A. Rosich
S320, 1998
E320T, 1995

Last edited by A. Rosich; 06-23-2002 at 03:31 PM.
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Old 06-28-2002, 03:00 PM
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: CT, USA
Posts: 2,699
I installed the 3rd row seat in my '88 TE; used all factory components and attachment points. Based upon that installation, and the fact that my wife got hit once pretty hard in the side back there and suffered minimal damage, I have complete confidence that it's safe back there. My 3, 6, and 8 year old kids ride back there regularly (in properly designed & installed MBZ kid seats).

I doubt the Germans would've forgotten about our kinder back there...and my kids LOVE that "history" seat (you see where you've BEEN)
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