Rating TOP 7 car seats for newborns: classification, design features, selection tips, comparison of popular models, reviews
Transportation of small children in a car without a car seat is officially prohibited by the traffic rules of the Russian Federation, and since 2017, any traffic police inspector has every right to issue a fine for such a fine. Unfortunately, many drivers and parents still consider buying a car seat a chore and do not pay enough attention to the selection process, choosing the cheapest, often second-hand option. Such people should be aware that a properly selected and installed seat significantly reduces the risk of death or serious injury to the child in the event of an accident. For newborns, it becomes a salvation in 70% of cases.
Remember that even the most careful driver is not immune from meeting on the road with inadequate, drunk or simply inattentive road users. Only a trained weightlifter can hold a baby in his arms upon impact. A simple person is guaranteed not to cope with a jerk, and the likelihood that the baby will hit the back of the front seat or fly out through the windshield becomes not just high, but very high. A properly selected car seat protects against frontal, side and rear impacts, during sudden braking and maneuvers. In this article I will try to tell you how to choose the right car seat for the most vulnerable category of children under the age of 1 year.
Rating of car seats for newborns
BRITAX ROMER Dualfix i-Size
A universal chair that allows you not to think about replacing it for 4 years. Mounted on Isofix mounts, equipped with soft pads for seat belts, orthopedic insert. The chair can be rotated 360 degrees without unfastening it – this will allow parents to comfortably put and take out the baby, serve him during the trip. The model perfectly protects against side collisions. An additional emphasis on the floor provides structural stability. The chair allows you to flexibly adjust the position of the backrest and headrest, adjusting it to the age and size of the child.
|Category||0/1 (up to 18 kg)|
|Child’s height||40 – 105 cm|
|The size||44x74x48 cm|
|The weight||15 kg|
- suitable for children from birth to 4 years;
- good protection indicators;
- the ability to rotate 360 degrees;
- secure fixation due to additional stop.
- removable cover;
- high price;
- fastened only with Isofix.
Bought when baby was 5 months old. I liked that the headrest and backrest can be adjusted, there is a special stand that supports the baby’s head. High armrests protect from all sides. The straps hold well, but at the same time do not create discomfort. With sudden braking, the seat remains in its place, and the child continues to sleep. The cover is made qualitatively, washed already 10 times, the shape / color has not lost. There is a red insert on the leg, focusing on it, the chair was installed in 5 minutes.
Remember that the chair must be placed strictly against the direction of travel until the child is at least one year old. Otherwise, in a collision or sudden braking, the baby’s head may jerk forward, which will lead to very serious injuries.
Recaro Young Profi Plus Isofix
A classic class 0+ carrycot that allows you to carry a child under the age of 1-1.5 years. It is installed strictly against the direction of movement of the car. It reliably envelops the passenger, protecting him not only from frontal, but also from side impacts. The convenient handle, fixed in several positions, will allow you to easily carry the chair with your child. The package includes a removable orthopedic insert that provides the child with the correct position and back support. The manufacturer has provided a ventilation system, thanks to which the child will not sweat in the heat.
|Category||0+ (up to 13 kg)|
|Mounts||Isofix (base sold separately), car seat belts|
|Child’s height||Not specified|
|The size||57×44×65 cm|
|The weight||4.2 kg|
- installation on Isofix or car belts;
- removable cover;
- baby head support
- double side impact protection system
- possibility of use as a carry cot;
- removable sun awning and orthopedic pad.
I liked the chair for its good quality, quality of materials. The decision to buy this seat was made after seeing crash test results, trial use. 2 week old baby slept well in it. Trips on suburban traffic jams for 2-4 hours, the child endures calmly, waking up only for feeding. The chair is comfortable, it does not rattle when empty (a friend has a chair of another company, the car turns into a “Lada”))))). After the baby is 2-3 months old. the gasket in the chair begins to crowd, it is pulled out, and it is more convenient for him. The baby is now 8 months old. Sits spacious, drive – enjoy! Judging by the ratio of age and weight – take weight as a basis! Children up to 9-10 kg. This chair is definitely enough, up to 13 kg. hardly.
If you plan to put the cradle on the front passenger seat, be sure to turn off the airbag. Without this, it is absolutely impossible to put a car seat there.
Maxi Cosi Pebble
A high-quality baby carrier from a well-known Dutch brand, winner of a number of prestigious international awards. The chair meets modern safety standards, reliably protects the child in any accident. The model is installed strictly against the direction of movement of the machine. It is equipped with an orthopedic pillow. The sun awning will make it easier for the child to stay in sunny weather, especially if the chair is used as a carrier. The seat depth can be adjusted according to the weight of the passenger. The five-point harness securely fixes the child, but does not press thanks to the wide soft pads.
|Category||0+ (up to 13 kg)|
|Mounts||Isofix (with base), car seat belts|
|Child’s height||40-85 cm|
|The size||44 x 67 x 56 cm|
|The weight||4 kg|
- the presence of an anatomical pillow;
- comfortable handle;
- can be installed on the wheelbase of the stroller;
- baby head support system;
- good side impact protection
- chair depth adjustment function;
- wide range of installation options.
- a large child in winter overalls is difficult to fit.
Perfect for autumn and winter kids! A newborn in a warm jumpsuit in a chair is very comfortable, like a mother’s on the handles. Very convenient to use as a carrier. I use it as a travel system with a bumbleride indie stroller. Now we are 7 months old and we are not large, but tall. Height 72cm, weight 7100. The legs of the chair already stick out decently. But we can still easily fit through the belts in a demi-season jumpsuit. Once the husband fell on the street with a carrier in his hands – the child did not even cry, although the car seat fell on its side. This is an indicator that the straps perfectly fix the child and the chair is very soft and comfortable inside.
A weight of 4-5 kilograms for a carry cot may seem a lot, but this is a price to pay for a frame made of reliable materials.
BRITAX ROMER Baby-Safe i-Size + Flex Base
Modern category 0+ car seat that complies with the new European safety standard ECE 129 (i-Size). Supplied with Isofix base equipped with stop. Can be used as a carrier or as a stroller seat (adapters for connecting to the wheelbase are sold separately). It has a sun awning, an orthopedic removable tab. Soft pads on the belts will not allow those to injure the child in an accident. The model allows you to adjust the height of the headrest.
|Category||0+ (up to 13 kg)|
|Mounts||Isofix, car seat belts|
|Child’s height||40-83 cm|
|The size||44x67x58 cm|
|The weight||4.7 kg (8.7 kg with base)|
- possibility of installation on a wheelchair;
- awning for protection from the sun;
- reliable protection against impacts;
- adjustable headrest;
- base with floor support system included.
We use the car seat both when traveling in a car and in a stroller, there is a mount on the chassis. The chair is comfortable, the child in it can withstand not only long walks, but also have a good night’s sleep. In the car, it is attached with the help of isofix, back to front, and this is additional security. The hood reliably hides the son from the sun.
When installing a child seat in the back seat, remember that the seat behind the driver is considered safer.
Happy Baby Skyler V2
Car seat of domestic production, corresponding to the European standard ECE 44/04. The model is light, weighing only 2.5 kg, which makes it much easier to carry the baby in it. The chair is equipped with all the necessary functionality: a removable awning from the sun, an orthopedic insert, pads for belts. The basis of a cradle is made rounded that will allow to rock the child in it.
|Category||0+ (up to 13 kg)|
|Child’s height||40 – 75 cm|
|The size||54×43×65 cm|
|The weight||2.5 kg|
- light and compact;
- equipped with an orthopedic insert;
- has a removable awning from the sun and soft slips on belts.
- can be used as a rocking chair or carrying;
- the cover can be easily removed.
- three-point internal seat belt.
In terms of reliability, this cradle meets the standards that are necessary for transporting babies of category 0+. In terms of comfort, our baby felt comfortable in it and almost always immediately fell asleep in it, there is a special pillow in the infant carrier that allows the baby to take a comfortable position and again meets the standards so that the child does not have a load on the spine. Also, this cradle is mobile, it is easy to install and also easy to remove and take it with you to the clinic, guests or home. She swings cool and the baby can sleep in it!
Happy Baby Unix Isofix
Armchair of domestic production, allowing you to transport a child from birth to 12 years. It can be fastened with regular seat belts or by means of the Isofix system. Conforms to the modern European standard ECE 44/04. Can be installed facing forward or backward. The swivel mechanism on the built-in base makes it easy to turn the chair 360 degrees. The chair cover can be easily removed for washing.
|Category||0/1/2/3 (up to 36 kg)|
|Mounts||Isofix, car seat belts|
|Child’s height||Not specified|
|The size||48x46x67 cm|
|The weight||9.5 kg|
- can be used up to 12 years;
- equipped with a built-in base with a swivel mechanism and Isofix mount;
- anatomical removable insert included;
- adjustable backrest and headrest.
- Best suited for children aged six months and older.
Satisfied with the chair. The swivel mechanism is not used at all. Easy to mount. The child likes it. We went to the sea, no problem. More than 5 hours a child in a chair without screaming and psychos.
Evenflo Symphony e3 DLX Platinum Series
Car seat from the famous American brand Evenflo Symphony. (The recognition of this brand in the US is 90%.). Designed to transport children from birth to 12 years. The SureLatch mount increases passenger weight capacity to 50 kilograms. This will allow you to comfortably accommodate the child, even if he is dressed in tight winter overalls. The model is equipped with a cup holder, it will be convenient for older children. The manufacturer uses a fabric with the function of thermoregulation, so the child will not freeze or overheat.
|Category||0/1/2/3 (up to 50 kg)|
|Mounts||Latch, car seat belts|
|Child’s height||up to 145 cm|
|The size||65×58×52 cm|
|The weight||9.7 kg|
- convenient fastenings;
- possibility of installation on the course or against the course of the movement;
- adjustable headrest;
- anatomic insert;
- gel layer prevents the child from sweating;
- the possibility of setting the backrest in a horizontal position.
- wide, may not fit in a compact car.
Yes, the chair is big. a child in a plump winter jumpsuit fits without any problems. It occupies 1.5 seats on the back sofa, it is problematic for two adults to sit in a B-class sedan next to a child in a chair. It’s good that everyone in our family is quite compact. Two grown men won’t fit in. belt adjustment, ease of fastening – this is 5+, everything is fine. I am very pleased that the shoulder straps are inserted into the central separately. no need to catch two of them at once and combine them.
The ranking of infant car seats would be incomplete without a good comparison chart. When choosing, it is the technical characteristics that come to the fore, and with the help of the table I compiled, the reader will be able to quickly compare the main parameters of all the chairs presented in the top.
|Model||Category||Mounts||Child’s height||The size||The weight|
|BRITAX ROMER Dualfix i-Size||0/1 (up to 18 kg)||Isofix||40 – 105 cm||44x74x48 cm||15 kg|
|Recaro Young Profi Plus Isofix||0+ (up to 13 kg)||Isofix (base sold separately), car seat belts||Not specified||57×44×65 cm||4.2 kg|
|Maxi Cosi Pebble||0+ (up to 13 kg)||Isofix (with base), car seat belts||40-85 cm||44 x 67 x 56 cm||4 kg|
|BRITAX ROMER Baby-Safe i-Size + Flex Base||0+ (up to 13 kg)||Isofix, car seat belts||40-83 cm||44x67x58 cm||4.7 kg (8.7 kg with base)|
|Happy Baby Skyler V2||0+ (up to 13 kg)||Automotive belts||40 – 75 cm||54×43×65 cm||2.5 kg|
|Happy Baby Unix Isofix||0/1/2/3 (up to 36 kg)||Isofix, car seat belts||Not specified||48x46x67 cm||9.5 kg|
|Evenflo Symphony e3 DLX Platinum Series||0/1/2/3 (up to 50 kg)||Latch, car seat belts||up to 145 cm||65×58×52 cm||9.7 kg|
What are car seats for newborns
In total there are 5 main groups of car seats:
- Group 0 – designed for children aged from birth to 6 months and weighing up to 10 kg. They look like cradles, installed sideways in relation to the direction of movement. They are not very popular, since their service life is very limited.
- Group 0+ – intended for children up to a year and a half years old and weighing up to 13 kg. Equipped with a handle, can be used as a carrier. Also, the handle can be used as an additional stiffening rib when installed on a chair, to attach hanging toys to it. Some models can be transformed into a stroller by connecting to the chassis using special adapters. Such chairs are installed facing against the direction of travel.
- Group 1 – intended for children aged 1 to 4 years and weighing 9 to 18 kg. They can be installed both in the direction and against the course of movement;
- Group 2 – for children aged 3 to 7 years and weighing 15 to 35 kg.
- Group 3 – booster seats for children aged 6 to 12 years. The recommended weight of the child here is from 22 to 36 kg.
For newborns, chairs of categories 0 and 0+ are intended, providing them with the correct physiological position, back and neck support.
In addition to “pure” groups, many manufacturers offer combination chairs such as 0+/1, 0+/1/2 or even 0+/1/2/3. These models are real “transformers” that “grow” with the child. Buying such a chair allows you to significantly save money, but it should be remembered that more versatile designs are usually more difficult to accurately “fit” to the dimensions of the child, so problems with insufficiently tight belts or too high a headrest cannot be ruled out. Universal models are a good choice if the family’s finances are very tight, or if the child drives the car occasionally. They can also be a real godsend for a taxi driver who wants to safely carry passengers with children – their specific work will not allow you to carry separate chairs for each age category.
How to choose a car seat for a newborn
The main task of the car seat is to ensure the complete safety of the child while driving, so this criterion is the main one. You should also pay attention to such points as the convenience and ergonomics of the chair, how it is attached.
As already mentioned, this is the main parameter when choosing a car seat for a newborn. Before buying, you must make sure that there is an orange badge with the letters ECE 44 or ECE 129 (i-Size) on the frame of the structure. Their presence means that this product meets European quality standards and has passed tests confirming the ability of the model to reliably protect the child in the event of a frontal or side impact.
Compliance with the ECE 129 (i-Size) standard is considered preferable: it is newer and takes into account a number of shortcomings specific to ECE 44. In particular, the new standard pays more attention not to weight, but to the height of the child, which allows you to more accurately choose a model for its parameters . In addition, the seats of the new standard are required to be tested for the ability to resist side impacts – previously this test was optional. The ECE 129 standard was developed in collaboration with car manufacturers and many modern cars are designed in such a way as to unleash the full protective potential of the chair.
ECE 44 is also current but will be phased out in favor of i-Size in the future. The Russian analogue of ECE 44 is GOST R 41.44 – 2005, however, I would advise you to choose seats that indicate exactly the European standard – so you are guaranteed not to have problems when crossing the border with EU countries by car. European border guards may refuse entry if a child is transported in a car without a car seat, or in a seat that does not meet the standard.
In a good category 0 or 0+ seat, the child must be securely restrained with a three-point or five-point harness. Special requirements are put forward to the headrest – it must ensure a secure fixation of the baby’s head, not allow it to dangle and twitch.
Category 0 and 0+ infant carriers are most often fixed in the car using:
- regular seat belt;
- Isofix mounts;
- Latch mounts.
In the vast majority of baby carriers for newborns, the child is fixed with a built-in 3 or 5-point harness. A standard car belt is necessary precisely in order to securely fix the seat itself in the car, so that the child does not fly away with it in the event of an impact. This method of fastening is most often used in older car models.
More modern cars most often have special Isofix mounts that allow you to install and remove the cradle much faster. They provide a rigid fixation and do not allow the chair to “fidget” in the cabin. Isofix cradles provide better protection, but they are more expensive and heavier by an average of 30 percent due to the metal frame, and can only be installed on the rear side seats and only if the automaker has provided special slots. On older cars, they are most likely absent. Fortunately, most models also support the ability to fix the seat belt.
Isofix mounts have another drawback – they can only be used as the main means of fixation if the weight of the child does not exceed 18 kilograms. For chairs of category 0+, this is not critical, but many manufacturers are trying to improve this design. One of the best options was the Latch mounts – they are fully compatible with isofix, but have a more advanced design, thanks to which they can withstand weights up to 30 kilograms. Also, chairs with Latch are lighter by an average of 2-3 kilograms due to the rejection of the metal frame – this is convenient if the cradle is also used as a carrier. The main disadvantage is that Latch is an American standard and is relatively rare on the Russian market.
A car seat must be not only safe, but also comfortable for the passenger, otherwise children’s whims cannot be avoided, and this creates a direct danger, distracting the driver. Before buying, it is better to carry out a “fitting” – find the model you like in the store, put the child in it and see if it will be comfortable for him there. If this is not possible, measure the height and weight of the baby in advance, and do not forget that you will have to put him in a chair both in summer and in winter, when he is dressed in a warm jacket. It’s also a good idea to check beforehand if the carrycot will fit into the car, as some models have a wider base than others.
It is important that the car seat belts securely fix the child, do not slip off, and at the same time do not press, and the fastener does not rub – for this, it must have a kind of fabric “cover” or lining. Small children often sleep in the car, so the function of adjusting the tilt of the chair will also be useful, as well as a footrest, thanks to which they will not dangle. The chair should have an orthopedic shape and securely support the back and neck of the baby.
When buying, you should think about your convenience. If possible, choose models that will be convenient for you to carry, install and dismantle. The possibility of converting the cradle into a stroller also greatly expands the functionality, but here it is important to choose the right compatible wheelbase. Finally, it is desirable to be able to remove and wash the cover – a small child is guaranteed to get it dirty, and more than once.
Choice between new and used chair
Wanting to save money, many parents buy chairs that have already been in use. At first glance, this approach really saves money, but there are several dangerous “pitfalls” here. The first of these is an increased risk of developing allergies, since we do not always know if past owners of pets did not have, and did not like to sleep in a car seat in their free time.
The second and most important aspect here is security. Children’s vehicles are inherently disposable. Their task is to take the hit in the event of an accident, but structural damage is almost inevitable, therefore, after an accident, the seats are supposed to be disposed of. When purchasing an infant car seat from a stranger, you cannot know if it has been in an accident, and outwardly it is not always possible to determine the presence of breakdowns. That’s why. If you are not completely sure about the seller, it is better not to save money and choose a new chair in the original packaging.