Convertible Seats: Cosco Scenera Vs. Evenflo Chase

Updated on April 12, 2010
C.D. asks from Littleton, CO
8 answers

I need to buy two carseats (for my 3 year old so that the britax marathon can be used by my 1 year old). I don't have the $ to buy two additional marathons so I am looking for safety, value, and comfort. Anyone out there have had experience with these two models mentioned?

thanks so much!

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answers from New York on

I bought the Cosco Scenera and it was very large and hard to install in my car (Subaru Forester). It has minimal padding and a little bare bones, however it is the car seat brand that's installed by Safekids in our area when a parent shows up with a car seat that is unsafe. If you go with this seat you could try having them professional install it at one of their car seat events - you can find one in your area at ( Please note they prefer you go with the seat installed as they want to check if you've done it correctly.

The other option is to get the new edition of the book "Baby Bargains" that rates all seats currently on the market, and gives thorough reviews on pros and cons of each, including price, safety issues, etc. "Toddler Bargains also has reviews of convertible and booster seats, but the current edition is a little outdated.

Some Bed Bath & Beyonds have baby gear in their stores or you can try their large selection at Buy Buy Baby (they are the parent company), where you can get 10-20% off using the blue coupons you get in the mail (can be used in both stores). Target also offers 10% off if you are a AAA and go through the AAA's website. They have good return policies for unused seats.

Another good option is because of their lifetime return period and if you get their "return insurance", for free return shipping if needed. You'll find good objective reviews of carseats on this site.

Any other online store (including amazon), good prices but return shipping is very expensive if it doesn't fit your child or your car. Don't buy with them unless you're 100% sure it's the seat you want.

Lastly, check out to find what car seats best fit your car. Britax seats are generally easy to install in any car because of their compact bases but other brands (including the popular Graco Comfort Sport) usually have a larger base and are harder to install in some cars. This site offers parent comments on different models they've tried in your car's model, both good and bad.

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answers from Barnstable on

I can't speak toward either (though my old Cosco just got recalled). I love the Graco MyRide 65 - great, great carseat! And if you get the Toys R Us coupons, I got mine down to $130.00! They have gotten fabulous reviews. very very pleased with mine!



answers from San Francisco on

I could not afford to spend a lot if I did not have to. I tried to find safty reports or comparisons on line and I did not find much. I finally found a site that said the bottom line is what fits your child, what fits in your car and what fits in your budget is the one for you. I went to Target and really checked out few lower priced ones. Some were only 50 bucks different and it seemed that what you got was more padding. One that was 50 bucks more than the cheepest one also said it went to 60 pounds. So of course that was appealing. Then I measured from the seat to the highest strap holes and the cheepest one had the highest holes. Then I also looked at when they fall asleep how deep is the side for head support. I ened up getting the 49.00 one and I feel okay about it. In 3 months we will be turning him around so we could then consider a differnt model. But for now, this is what fit my car and my child. He is thick and some of those seats with so much padding might have been a tight fit for his body.



answers from Seattle on

We moved our three year old to the britax frontier (a 5point harness booster seat) when our one year old needed the marathon. Switch to a 5point booster instead of another convertible seat, you'll save yourself the hassle (and money) of buying another seat in a couple years! We used and liked and the babies r us coupons at different times to get the best deals.



answers from San Francisco on

How much does your 3YO weigh and which harness slots is he using on the Marathon? the Chase has taller harness slots than the Scenera so it'll last longer before being outgrown by height. But I agree with the folks who suggested checking out the new Evenflo Maestro if it's within your budget - it has a higher weight limit than the Chase and is also a better booster than the Chase (see this CPST's reviews of both seats as boosters here and here and according to this tech is also better than the Generations (review here )
If possible, find a store where your 3YO can test out the Maestro - the one issue some people have reported is that the harness straps seem closer together than in other harnessed seats, which some kids find uncomfortable



answers from Fresno on

I was in the same situation as you but i have a 2 year old. I transfered the 1 yr old into the Britax and bought the Evenflo Generations 65 $99 will harness to 65lbs, then becomes a good booster. I love it and am going back to get another today for our other car. Babie r us has a 20% off coupon right now so that makes the seat like $80 bucks - a GREAT DEAL!!



answers from San Francisco on

Get the Graco 3-in-1 Nautilus. It's a good price $145 at Walmart and will last you until they can use the regular belt. We had to do the same when our baby moved to the Marathon at 7 months!


answers from Minneapolis on

Your 3yr old is forward facing? If so, I would look for one of these seats;

Evenflo Maestro $79 will harness to 50lbs, then becomes a booster. Good seat, great price.

Evenflo Generations 65 $99 will harness to 65lbs, then becomes a good booster. Great seat, great price.

Graco Nautilus $150 will harness to 65lbs and then becomes a great booster, and then a no back booster. This is the best out of the 3 because it will last the longest because the top harness slot is the highest.

The Britax Frontier is a great seat, but it is spendy, so if you need two I would look for one of the ones listed above. they are all forward facing only seats so if your 3yr old is still rear facing, these wouldn't work. Otherwise they are all great seats!

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