Recaro ProRIDE Recaro Performance RIDE
The Common Features
The Recaro ProRIDE and Performance RIDE convertible car seats share many common features, but there are also some important differences.
One important difference is the price. The ProRIDE costs about $219 and the Performance RIDE costs about $249.
They are both excellent convertible car seats, but the key question is whether or not the Performance RIDE is worth the extra $30?
The common features include:
Forward and rear-facing car seat with side-impact protection for head, neck, face, torso, and pelvis
Safety Stripe System to alert parents that a twist could occur, or has begun, thus preventing a safety hazard
Front-adjusting five-point harness, built-in LATCH system, universal top tether system (forward-facing)
EPS foam to absorb forces; protective and comfortable automotive PUR foam in the head restraint
Ergonomic shell structure for comfort and mesh fabric for air circulation
Weight limits: 5 to 40 pounds in rear-facing position; 20 to 70 pounds in forward-facing position.
Height limits: Under 50 inches (and under 22-1/2 inches when seated) for rear-facing position; under 50 inches when seated for forward-facing position.
Certified for air travel when used in harness mode with the plane’s seat belt
Differences Between ProRIDE and Performance RIDE
There are 2 differences between the ProRIDE and the Performance RIDE car seats. In each case, the Performance RIDE seat has the extra feature and the ProRIDE does not.
HERO harness system
Removable Cup Holder
The HERO harness system ensures the highest level of protection and comfort for your child by positioning the shoulder pads to appropriately fit the their neck, head and shoulders while resisting harness twisting and ensuring proper chest clip positioning.
The HERO harness resists twisting because each side of the shoulder pad is joined to each other via a central piece of padding that hides neatly underneath the headrest. There is also some sort of tacky material inside the pads to further stop of them from twisting. This obviously prevents the common problem of fully independent shoulder pads twisting out of proper alignment, which can cause discomfort to your child and also means that the shoulder pads are not working as they are supposed to.
The Removeable Cup Holder is exactly as you would imagine … a cup holder that can be removed!
Obviously, this is not a safety feature, but does make life a little easier on longer journeys when your child can simply reach for their own drink rather than rely on you to pass it back and forth from the front seat.
February 2014 LATCH Guidelines
Recaro now advises that the LATCH lower tethers should only be used on the ProRIDE until your child weighs more than 45 lbs and on the Performance RIDE until your child weighs more than 40 lbs (the difference is due to the Performance RIDE seat being about 4 lbs heavier than the ProRIDE). You can still continue to use both seats until your child’s weight exceeds 70 lbs, but only if you re-install the seat using the adult seat belt instead. You should still use the top tethers as they are not affected by the law change. Read more about this law change here.
Recaro Performance RIDE User Review Video
Is the Performance RIDE Worth the Extra $30?
Whilst they don’t make a huge difference in terms of safety, I would probably pay the extra $30 or so for the added reassurance of the HERO harness and the extra convenience of the cup holder.
Where to Buy Recaro Convertible Car Seats
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE PERFORMANCE RIDE IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE – ITS HAS BEEN REPLACED BY THE PERFORMANCE RACER SEAT
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.
Do You Need More Help?
I know from personal experience that choosing the best car seat for your child can be a daunting and confusing process. I have 3 small children and a garage full of used child car seats! If you need any further advice or assistance whatsoever, please feel free to contact me and I will do my very best to help. If I don’t know the answer off the top of my head, I will certainly know where to find it and get back to you within 24 hours. If you have any other questions or feedback about my Recaro ProRIDE vs Performance RIDE post, please just leave a comment in the box below or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org