K.A. asks from Centreville, VA on March 31, 2008
Opinions on Britax
My husband and I are looking to purchase a convertible car seat for our son, who is 19.5 lbs, 7 months old. We have heard Britax is the best and we don't mind spending the money - it they are worth it! I don't see huge differences between the Roundabout/Marathon/Boulevard seats. Have any of you used these seats? We are trying to figure out which one would be best. If it matters, we have an Entourage Van - so room isn't necessarily an issue. Thanks!!
M.C. answers from Washington DC on March 31, 2008
I have the Britax Marathon - Samatha pattern for my little girl. I really like it. The price tag was a bit high, but it has a good safety rating and I LOVED the pattern. My selling point was that the 5 point harness can be used until 65 lbs. My DD is 17m and has been using hers since she was 7m. She loves it. Its wide with a lot of room to stretch out. I don't like seats that seem cramped. One thing to keep in mind is that these seats are rather large, and wide from front to back. They will not fit in all types of vehicles/seats. My husband has a Ford F-150 with a bench seat in the extended cab. The Britax M would not fit. We had to find a different seat that had a smaller 'footprint'. I would go to the store and ask if you could try them in your car. I believe that Babies R Us lets you do this. Another cool thing that I learned is that you can have them delivered to your house. Once I decided on the one I wanted, I just ordered it online and it was delivered to my door in a few days. Also, there are usually models and style patterns online that aren't in the store. If it matters. Ordering it online was great, because the box was HUGE and wouldn't have fit in my trunk. We would've had to take the truck!
Hope this helps.
A.F. answers from Washington DC on March 31, 2008
Both the Decathalon and Boulevard have inserts in them that are helpful for infants. I actually have both -- the Decathalon for my son (now 19 mos) and the Boulevard for my daughter (5 mos). I put my son in the Decathalon at 3.5 mos, b/c he hated his infant carrier, and it worked very well with the inserts. I decided that I really think the Boulevard is better, though -- has more cushioning around the head in case of impact, so that's why I went with it for my daughter. I have no regrets for either seat, though, and I really think Britax is the safest you can find out there. The only thing I didn't like about the Boulevard was that it wasn't available at Babies R Us in really neutral colors, so my daughter is now in a very PINK carseat. LOL. But I think you might be able to find one online in a more neutral color if that is important to you. Most online sites will ship carseats for free.
Both the Boulevard and the Decathalon go up to 65 lbs, but keep in mind that carseats expire after 5 years, so chances are your child will be in a booster before they hit 65 lbs anyway.
A.B. answers from Washington DC on October 09, 2008
The difference is size and padding. I use the Roundabout because I couldn't really afford any others. but also because I have skinny kids so Eli would never need the height of the Marathon and Boulevard before hes in a booster. I LOVE mine.
J.S. answers from Washington DC on March 31, 2008
I have both the Roundabout and the Marathon--which I don't use either anymore. My daughter wanted a big girl seat! I really like the roundabout better, because it was easier to adjust the harness. The Marathon worked well also, I just like the Roundabout better, yes I think it only goes up to 40lbs, My daughter will be 4 in May and is 32lbs, chances are you will not be using that seat when your little boy 60lbs!! I would highly recomend any of them!! Good Luck.
E.T. answers from Washington DC on March 31, 2008
I believe the roundabout has a lower weight limit than the other two. The Boulevard and Diplomat are the newest seats with side impact protection. The marathon is older and doesn't have the side impact protection. The Diplomat has a lower weight limit, but is significantly smaller, if you have multiple children or a smaller vehicle.
I bought my boulevard with a 15% off coupon at Babies R Us. The store didn't have the more neutral fabrics that they had online, but the store ordered the one from the website and delivered it to the store. That way I could use the coupon and there were no shipping charges.
A.N. answers from Norfolk on March 31, 2008
We have a Britax Marathon and I recommend them all the time. They are awesome seats. I would skip the Roundabout b/c it has lower top harness slots and a lower weight limit and is outgrown quicker. The Diplomat is a new one that came out that is good for smaller cars b/c part of the seat comes off to allow for smaller vehicles (you won't need that with a van). The Boulevard is a nice one too. You won't need the infant inserts but it is a wonderful seat as well, especially if you are looking for the side impact protection. Plus, they all (except the Roundabout and probably Diplomat) last a long time rearfacing. My 35 inch 21 month old is still rearfacing in her Marathon and still has about 2 inches of growing room before she will have to face forward. She will last until at least 2 rearfacing and hopefully until at least 4 (most kids make it to 5 or 6 but she is really tall) in it and then I plan to get a Britax Regent to keep her harness to at least 6 or 7. Note: the regent would not be good in your situation yet b/c it only faces forward and it does not normally fit children well until at least 2 or 3 years old.
But Britax are wonderful seats. I love them.
Oh, and most carseats including Britax seats expire after 6 years, not 5.
S.R. answers from Norfolk on March 31, 2008
if you are looking at britax seats then you all ready know they are super safe. i would like to tell you about the ease of use. these seats are the best! I put my baby in a britax marathon straight from the hospital. the seats some how accomodate newborns all the way up to the big kiddos. the best part about the carseat is the straps! they are made from polyester so they don't get twisted and tangled like nylon straps. the straps also velcro to the sides of the seat when you take the baby out so you never have to dig under them to buckle them back in! yeah! that right there is worth the 250 bucks...