Best Car Seats 2018 Review

Car Seat Reviews

Finding the best Car Seat can be one of the most difficult things to accomplish, they come in many shapes and forms, groups and types.

With our Car Seat Reviews we aim to explain what these groups and types of car seat mean to enable you to get the correct knowledge before making your decision.
Safety is the number one priority when it comes to car seats.

To make this review as easy to understand as possible, it is broken down into a few sections:

Quick Buying Guide:

This is our quick buying guide showing our favourite 4 seats in the review, you can find further information and more detailed reviews further down.

  • Maxi Cosi Pebble Plus
  • Price: ££
  • Birth to 12 Months
  • Compatible with large variety of travel systems.
Most Innovative
  • Graco Milestone
  • Price: £££
  • Birth to 12 Years
  • Lasts from Birth up until 12 years!
Best Value
  • Graco Affix Highback Booster
  • Price: £
  • 3 to 10 Years
  • An affordable way to get many years of use from a single seat
Best Luxury Buy
  • Maxi Cosi Axiss
  • Price: ££££
  • Birth to 4 Years
  • One of the most popular car seats in the UK

bear in car seat reviews

Car Seat Groups Table

The below table explains the different types of car seat available by restraint, the weight range they correspond do and then the age range.

Restraint Type Weight Range Age Range
Rearward Facing Baby Seat Group 0
0 – 10kg (22 lbs)
Birth to 6-9 months
Group 0+
0 – 13kg (29 lbs)
Birth to 12-15 months
i-size
Not based on weight, but height
Up to at least 15 months
Combination Seat (Rearward & Forward Facing) Group 0+ and 1
0-18 kg (40 lbs)
Birth – 4 years
Group 0+, 1 & 2
Birth to 25 kg (55 lbs)
Birth to 6 years
Forward Facing Child Seat Group 1
9-18 kg (20 – 40 lbs)
9 months – 4 years
Group 1, 2 and 3
9 – 36 kg (20 – 79 lbs)
1 to 11 years
High Backed Booster Seat Group 2
15 – 25 kg (33 – 55 lbs)
4 to 6 years
High Backed Booster Seat Group 2 and 3
15 – 36 kg (33 – 79 lbs)
4 to 11 years
Booster Cushion (From 9th February 2017) Group 3
22 – 36 kg (48 – 79 lbs) and 125cm  or taller
Group2/3
15-36kg This group is being phased out due to new regulations.
6 – 11 years

 

4-12 years

Anchor Points & Safety

15 years ago, all car seats were attached via the use of the seat belt. Over the years rigorous investment by car seat and car manufacturers has seen the way in which we can attach seats vastly improved. There are 3 ways in which a car seat can be anchored into your car:

Belted Car Seats/Base:

  • A base can be belted into the back of the car which means the car seat can be slotted in and out of the base.
  • The car seat itself can be anchored into the seat via the use of the belt and without using a base.
  • Use of a seat belt to attach a car seat is now becoming a thing of the past. They are now predominantly only used to belt in high back booster seats for older children.

Isofix Car Seats:

isofix car seat fittings

  • Isofix refers to the two metal anchorage points in your car seat that the Isofix car seat attaches to.
  • Isofix has been present in most cars since around 2002. Since February 2013, all cars manufactured have to have Isofix tether points fitted as standard.
  • Isofix also utilises a Top Tether for some cars/seats. This helps to provide a further anchorage point and is used dependant on the comparability of the car seat in conjunction with the design of the car the seat is being fitted to.
  • Since the introduction of Isofix, fatalities in road traffic accidents have decreased.

I-Size Car Seats:

i size logo
This symbol means the car seat is I-Size
  • I-Size was introduced in 2013. The standard of testing required to be I-Size approved is vigorous. The safest car seats available to buy are I-Size seats.
  • If your car is I-Size, ANY I-Size car seat will fit. There is no need to worry about whether it will or won’t fit.
  • All vehicles manufactured since I-Size was introduced have to be I-Size compliant in order to achieve the the maximum safety rating. This has encouraged almost all car manufacturers to make their cars I-Size compatible. In the future as older cars come off the roads and are replaced by newer ones, most cars will be I-Size compatible.
  • The regulation states that children must travel rearward facing until they are older than 15 months.
  • I-Size uses a child’s height and age rather than weight to judge sizing.
  • I-Size runs alongside other regulations – there is no law that states every seat must be I-Size moving forward.

Top Safety Concerns:

  • Children should use a car seat until the age of 12 or until they reach the height of 135cm, whichever comes first.
  • Rearward Facing for longer is recommended – a child facing forwards in a car seat is 5 times more vulnerable in a frontal collision. Parents would love the ability to check on their little ones whilst driving, but having them face forward is not as safe as facing rearward.
  • The safest place for your child to travel is in the back. If they do travel in the front, you need to de-activate the airbag.
  • Nearly half of people who buy a car seat in the UK complete no checks first to ensure that it will fit in their car.

Will it fit in my car?

  • The following are great places to check to see if a car seat will fit in your vehicle: Britax Fit Finder, Maxi Cosi Fit List, Joie Fitting List
  • Many retailers such as Halfords and Mothercare all provide a checking service to ensure the seat fits prior to purchase.

Graco Milestone Car Seat

graco milestone car seat reviewThe Milestone Car Seat is quite appropriately named – it is a milestone! This seat will serve from Birth up until the age of 12 years. It can be positioned as a rearword facing seat, forward facing and a high back booster depending on the age/weight of your child. There is a 4 position recline and 10 position headrest/harness to keep your little one comfortable.
The concept of this product is brilliant, but we cannot help but be concerned about a few things that may influence is usability in the future, it is important to keep in mind these points before deciding to go ahead and make a purchase:

  • The car seat is designed to last for 12 years – will your car be the same throughout this period of time?
  • Will it be able to handle 12 years of usage? Or will it succumb to various stains and incidents?!
  • Reviews for this seat now are very good, but this will not have covered the use of the seat over a very prolonged period of time.

See Price on Amazon


 

Maxi Cosi Axissmaxi cosi axiss car seat

The Maxi Cosi Axiss is a seat that has been designed to be used from birth until 4 years. The innovative seat has a unique feature of being able to rotated 90 degrees whilst fitted so easily place your child in the seat. You then simply rotate it into position to make them secure.

  • The seat can rotate in its base 360 degrees meaning you can place your child in or take out of the vehicle easily.
  • The seat comes fitted with a colour indicator to show you if the seat has been fitted correctly or not giving you complete piece of mind.

See Price on Amazon


 

Britax Kidfix XP SICT – Group 2-3britax kidfix sp sict black marble

This car seat is super stylish, innovative and long-lasting. This will suit weights of 15-36kg or roughly 4-12 years. The seat can be fitted using Isofix or the seat belt.

  • Cover can be removed for cleaning 
  • Side impact protection is soft and well padded – can be moved to face the side of the vehicle where impact is likely to occur.
  • Adjustments can be completed easily with one hand
  • Incredibly well made and high quality.

See Price on Amazon


 

Cosatto Hug Car Seat (Various Colours)cosatto hug car seat colours

This award winning seat is not only incredibly feature rich and immensely safe… it comes in a variety of trendy colours! Cosatto specialise in the “wow” factor when it comes to colouring and style. Their mission is to “save the world from boring baby stuff” and these car seats are certainly not boring!

  • Suitable from 9 months up til 12 years
  • Isofix fitting (uses top tether)
  • 5 position recline
  • Features the innovative “Cosatto anti-escape system” to prevent children from escaping the seat

See Price on Amazon


Maxi Cosi Pebble Plusmaxi cosi pebble plus car seat

This I-Size car seat is great on its own, with the optional 2-Way Fix Base or to be used alongside a travel system. This car seat is a great choice for those who want the ease of leaving an Iso-Fix base in their car and having an easy to remove car seat which can then be placed onto a travel system. This seat is compatible with all Maxi Cosi systems including the Quinny. It can also be used with many other travel systems (but some do require adaptors).

  • Suitable from Birth to 12 Months (75cms)
  • Can be used with the 2-Way Fix base to ensure maximum security using the Isofix points. This base can be used for the next car seat in the range (the 2 Way Pearl)
  • 2 year guarantee
  • Many parents with premature babies recommend the seat

See Price on Amazon


Maxi Cosi 2-Way Pearlmaxi cosi 2 way pearl

The 2-Way Pearl is an ideal partner for the 2-Way base and is an incredibly safe car seat. Not only is it safe, it is stylish too available in many different colours. It boasts the ability for your child to remain in the safer rearward facing position up until the age of 4 years.

  • Suitable from 6 months until 4 years
  • Rearward facing up until the age of 4 years with forward facing available from 15 months
  • Seat can recline to 4 different positions in both forward and rearward facing mode
  • Incredibly easy to place your child in the seat and strap them in

See Price on Amazon


 

Recaro Monza Novarecaro monza nova car seat

The Recaro Monza Nova car seat can be anchored using your vehicles Isofix points or using the 3 point car belt if your car doesn’t have Isofix. The seat combines state of the art safety technology with comfort. One of the unique features of this fantastically designed seat is that it contains in built speakers for Smart Phones, MP3 players or in-car DVD players.
Recaro is known for its manufacturing of in-car seating for anything from race cars and even produced seats for VW. More recently they are becoming known for their innovative car seats.

  • Suitable for age 4 up until age 12
  • Breathable fabric and removable covers that can be washed
  • Unique speakers for in-car entertainment for your little one
  • Has a luxurious feel and look for luxury car enthusiasts

See Price on Amazon


Graco Affix Highback Booster – Group 2/3

Graco Affix High Back Booster

This affordable and feature-rich car seat is ideal for parents who want to find a car seat that will last a long time. The back on the Graco Affix can be removed so that it can be used just as a booster seat.
Its longevity is extended by the ability to remove and wash the fabric cover and can last from the age of 3 up until 10!

 

  • Suitable for children aged 3-10 years
  • Side impact protection on the wings and headset
  • Fabrics removable for easy washing and cleaning
  • Cup holder and accessory holders are a neat additional feature

 

See Price on Amazon


Maxi Cosi Cabriofix Car Seat – Group 0+cabriofix concrete grey car seat

The Maxi Cosi Cabriofix Car Seat is highly versatile at fitting on travel systems including Maxi Cosi, Quinny, Bugaboo, iCandy and many more through the use of adaptors. This is one of the most popular Group 0+ car seats on the market and like all Maxi Cosi products is incredibly safe.

  • Suitable from birth until 12 months (13kg)
  • Available in a huge range of colours which can match your travel system colour (you can also alternate the colours!)
  • Can be installed using the seat belt or using the Maxi Cosi FamilyFix Base or EasyFix Base.
  • Side protection system – offers additional protection in a side impact collision.

See Price on Amazon


batman car seat kids embraceBatman Car Seat

What better way to get your child into their car seat than by encouraging them to spend time with Batman! From a company called Kids Embrace, their range of seats are designed to make a child’s journey both safe and incredibly fun.

  • Suitable for 9kg to 36kg
  • Uses the in car 3-point belt to secure it
  • 5 point harness and side impact protection
  • Cup holders and arm rests

See Price on Amazon


Best Car Seats by Group/Age

Best Car Seat 9-36kg (Group 1/2/3)

Britax Romer Evolva 123 

Britax Evolva 123 Car Seat Review

The Britax Romer Evolva 123 Car Seat has some great features and benefits considering it is a fairly cheap car seat. It will last many years (suitable from 9-36kg – so will last from approx. age 1-11 years) so will save you money having to buy future seats if your child outgrows it.

The seat fits in your car using the existing 3-point seatbelt. Once your child reaches 18kg the harness on the seat can be removed. You can then use the seat effectively as a booster using the existing car 3-point seatbelt to secure your child.

  • Soft padding on the sides and wings for optimum comfort
  • Adjustable headrest and harness (easy to use)
  • Multi-position recline feature
  • Drinks holders on both sides (so seat can be positioned either side and you can still take advantage of the drinks holder!)
  • Will last a long time with it being a Group 1/2/3

See Price on Amazon

 

Best Car Seat 15-36kg (Group 2/3)

Britax Kidfix SL SICT Group 2-3

Britax Kidfix SL Review Car Seat

We reviewed the XP version of this car seat above – very similar names but with slight differences! So what is the difference between the Britax Kidfix SL and XL versions?
The XL Version of the seat comes with a front impact protection bar “XP-Pad” but the SL version does not include this.

The XP Pad is a unique feature that can diverts up to 30% of the energy forces away from the neck in the event of an accident. This additional feature means the XP version of the seat is approximately £20 more expensive than the SL version.

  • Is ISOFIX so very easy to fit in the car using ISOFIX bars
  • Side impact protection technology for additional protection in the event of a side impact collision in an accident
  • Adjustable head rest and seat belt guides to grow with your child
  • Ergonomically designed for the ultimate sleeping position
  • Produced by Britax – a highly reputable firm manufacturing in Germany and famous for working closely with leading car manufacturers.

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Best Baby Car Seat From Birth 0-13kg (Group 0/0+)

Maxi Cosi Cabriofix Group 0+

This car seat features in part of our main review above, and is a highly popular, versatile and stylish car seat produced by reputable manufacturer Maxi Cosi.

When used in conjunction with an Easy Fix Base, this car seat is incredibly safe and easy to use for your newborn baby (from Birth until roughly 12 months). The base is particularly useful as you can simply click the car seat into the base and remove with ease (not waking baby) rather than have to use the belt to put the car seat in securely each time.

  • Suitable from birth until 12 months (13kg)
  • Available in a huge range of colours which can match your travel system colour (you can also alternate the colours!)
  • Can be installed using the seat belt or using the Maxi Cosi FamilyFix Base or EasyFix Base.
  • Side protection system – offers additional protection in a side impact collision.

See Price on Amazon

We hope that you find our guide useful and informative. We spent many days putting it together so that you could be informed in the easiest way possible about the confusing world of car seats!

Feel free to leave a comment or contact us for any more information.

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Best Car Seats
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4 Comments

  1. Rachel Craig May 29, 2017
    • Alice Greyer May 29, 2017
  2. Emma Louise Elliott May 31, 2017
  3. Hayley Colburn May 31, 2017

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