Originally Posted by sterlin761
I'm looking to buy my first Airstream Interstate. I know RVs are not required to have LATCH installed but does anyone know if airstream has LATCH or if you can install the system aftermarket. My wife is very firm on this system being installed for a baby due in April and our three year old.
Airstream Interstates definitely don't have them as OEM. Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 213 covers requirements for child safety restraints (the removable parts). FMVSS 225 covers the design of child safety restraint anchoring systems (the part built into the vehicle seat). And just for the sake of completeness, FMVSS 208 covers seat belts in general.
According to FMVSS 225, the requirements for child restraint systems only apply to vehicles with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less. Even the original Sprinter 3500 van, before the Airstream conversion, would not
be required to have LATCH-equipped seats, though Sprinter 2500 passenger vans would be so required.
You will not be able to legally modify the Airstream Interstate's seats to incorporate LATCH hardware. You are not a vehicle manufacturer or upfitter and there are no FMVSS-compliant aftermarket do-it-yourself kits. At least none that I'm aware of. And if you did install one yourself, it would not necessarily be FMVSS-compliant because you would not have performed the necessary laboratory testing of its strength.
There are some manufacturers of child safety seats that make FMVSS-compliant seats that don't
use the LATCH system yet still meet all of the same safety requirements. These are made specifically for use on airplanes and school buses and work with regular seat belts, and can be used in an Airstream Interstate without modification to either the van's seat or the child seat. Only buy one manufactured after September 1st, 2007 that has the "FMVSS 213" label. I can't give you a source, though. I'm familiar with the FMVSS, but I've never had kids and so never bought a child restraint system.