The Chicco Company
Chicco is undoubtedly one of the the most popular car seat manufacturers in the world. They have been around since 1958 and in the past 55 years or so have developed a reputation for creating some excellent products. There can be little argument that they have the sort of eye for detail and elegance that one would expect of a company with Italian origins, but are their products actually any good? Is there any real functional substance behind their beautifully crafted and chic looking car seats or is it all just show?
I am going to review 3 Chicco cars seats from the US market and give you my honest and independent opinion about them.
Chicco Keyfit 22 Infant Car Seat
This is the little sister to the very popular Chicco Keyfit 30. It is designed to carry babies weighing between 4 and 22 lbs and comes with its own base that can be left in your vehicle. The seat is then just clicked in and out of the base as and when you need to travel with your child. You can also use the seat as part of a “travel system” for added convenience and cost savings. The seat comes supplied with the base, so you don’t need to buy it separately.
Its main selling point is that it weighs only 15 lbs (6.2 lbs lighter than the Keyfit 30). Now, I know from my own personal experience that car seat weight can be an important factor for many parents, especially if you are a new mother that has just delivered via a C-Section, have twins, or are just of a small physical build. My wife an I made the big mistake of buying heavy infant cars seats when our twin boys were born and my wife has never fully forgiven me!
So, if you like the Keyfit 30 seat, but are worried by its rather hefty 21.2 lb weight the Keyfit 22 is definitely worth considering. It has many of the great features that make the Keyfit 30 the No 1 rated car seat in America and is just as easy to install using the LATCH-fitted base.
The Keyfit 22 comes with the sort of safety and comfort features than you would expect of a premium car seat, like:
- Energy-absorbing foam for improved side-impact protection
- Removable newborn insert for smaller babies
- Thickly cushioned seat pad and five-point harness for maximum comfort
- Spring-assisted level foot, bubble levels, and center-pull adjustment for easiest installation
Of course, the light weight of the Keyfit 22 does have one obvious drawback – it will not last as long as other larger infant car seats that are commonly designed for use between 4 and 30 lbs. Having said that, these seats come with height limits too and larger babies often outgrow the height limits before the weight limits. Obviously, it is impossible to predict with any accuracy how quickly your child will grow but this is a factor to be considered when weighing up all of the pros and cons of this seat.
I have read one review claiming that this is the lightest car seat on the market. This is NOT true. The lightest car seat on the US market is actually the Maxi Cosi Mico AP – it is also designed for babies weighing up to 22 lbs, but the seat itself only weighs a truly staggering 8 lbs!
Overall, I think that the Keyfit 22 is a good option for those seeking a lighter car seat than the Keyfit 30 or other similar sized models. However, if weight is not an issue then I would favor the Keyfit 30 or the Britax B-Safe 35 Car Seats.
Chicco Keyfit 30 Infant Car Seat
The Chicco Keyfit 30 is probably the most popular infant car seat in the US. It is slightly more expensive than the Keyfit 22. If weight is not a big issue for you, then I would definitely pay the extra cash for the Keyfit 30 model.
I have previously written a full review of the Keyfit 30 car seat here, so if you want to read more information about it then please click on the link.
In short, the main reasons why I would choose the Keyfit 30 over and above the Keyfit 22 (despite my wife’s weight concerns) are:
- It will last longer due to the higher weight limit (our babies are always on the small side and would not quickly exceed the height limit)
- It will help to prolong rear-facing due to the higher weight limit
Watch the Chicco Keyfit 30 Review Video below:
Chicco Nextfit 65 Convertible Car Seat
It costs about $279.99 and if you choose to use it from birth it will save you a lot of money since you will not have to buy an infant seat and then a convertible car seat later.
However, one of the downsides of using a convertible car seat from birth is that you cannot use them as part of a “travel system” or carry your baby around in them outside your vehicle. They are designed to remain fitted in your vehicle and your baby lifted in and out of the seat as and when required.
One of the main benefits of the Nextfit 65 is that it can be used rear-facing up to 40 lbs, which means that your child will probably be at least 2 years of age before they need to move to a forwards-facing position. The American Academy of Paediatrics recommends that children should remain rear-facing until they are at least 2 years of age and so the Nextfit 65 will help your to comply with this advice.
Watch the Chicco Nextfit 65 Video Demonstration
I have previously written a full review of the Chicco Nextfit 65 Convertible car seat and my verdict was that it is one of the best (if not the best) convertible car seats on the market today. There used to be a problem with the Nextfit’s shoulder and crotch straps, but Chicco have now responded positively to customer concerns and corrected these problems. The full details of these changes are explained in my full review.
If you want/need to use a travel system, I would recommend the Chicco Keyfit 30.
After purchasing any child car seat, you should always read the User Manual thoroughly before using it. It is also advisable to visit your local Fire Department or NHTSA Child Car Seat Inspection Centre to ensure that the seat is definitely suitable for your child’s specific requirements and that you have installed it correctly. These services are usually provided free of charge.
You can find your nearest NHTSA Centre here.
I would love to hear from anyone that has any opinions about my Chicco Car Seat Reviews. If you want to contribute anything constructive to this discussion, please leave a comment below or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org