Baby car seats… a world of pain for us dad shoppers, right?
Its a decision – being in the clearly defined dad domain of cars – that invariably gets left with us, along with the mountain of pressure and responsibility that goes with it!
Sure, it’s not the day-to-day pressure cooker of motherhood our wives/gf’s go through, but it’s a colossus of a task and one you don’t want to get wrong… as first and foremost the car seat has got to do the majorly important job of protecting your precious baby in the horrible event of an accident: That’s not something you want to take lightly, or mess up. And the seat’s got to be comfortable enough to keep your little one content and comfy while awake and deeply snuggly and peaceful while snoozing.
And there are literally 100s of baby seats to choose from – all in different styles, sizes, price brackets and with alternative mounting/fitting/adjusting set-ups. Like, I said, pressure…
But let me give you a little tip. You might think shopping for a car seat has to be painful, boring, loaded with stress and mean having to go to one of ‘those’ baby shops again. But no… think again!
The task of getting a perfect, safe, comfy baby seat can be cool as ice, if you think of a brand most people associate with motorsport, but who also happen to make award-winning baby seats – RECARO.
And as our Road Magazine baby is over nine months and weighs between nine and 18 Kilos, she’s is now classed in the Group 1 category – meaning she has strong enough back and neck muscles to move out of the rear facing and into the forward facing baby seats.
Enter the RECARO Child Safety team and their awesome mini-bucket seat style ‘Young Expert Plus.’ And how awesomely cool is it? I mean, it looks like a mini Seb Loeb has just stepped out of it. And you know how safe WRC cars are, not to mention how cool Mr Loeb is, right?!
The RECARO Young Expert Plus can be easily installed using either the vehicles own three point belt or with the separately available RECARO ISOfix base. We ordered one of these, as it’s just so easy to switch the seat and base set-up from car to car (with ISOfix) – which is handy in the job of a road tester.
The RECARO group 1 seat has tall, large sides to its (WRC-style!) protective shell, ensuring optimum side impact protection through the head, side and hip areas. And, also WRC-style, it’s fitted with an easy to operate five point harness, which is adjustable to three different height positions and can be adjusted as the child grows – giving you and your bairn years of RECARO pleasure.
Additionally, the funky Young Expert Plus has super comfortable padding (in WRC-style alcantara, available in a range of different colour schemes, but we plumbed for WRC-style jet black) with additional removable cushions in the base and headrest for smaller children (to be easily removed when the child gets older).
And the seat base also reclines from upright into two further chillaxed positions – allowing even more levels of comfort for your kid as you travel.
Practically, to help keep the seat clean and looking new, both the seat covers and harness covers are removable for machine washing at 30°.
And – best of all, unlike the Group 0 and 0+ seats which cost a bomb and last no time – the RECARO Group 1 Young Expert Plus is suitable for children from around nine months, right up until the age of four-five years old (& 18Kg). Awesome!
You might think that offering this much safety, style and so many man (an mum actually) points, the seat would be of the scale of price… but you’d be wrong. The RRP of this seat is just £165 & the RRP for base is also low at £75. It’s a steal, as well as being supercool and ultra safe.
To test the new RECARO baby seat, we have just taken Project Ecowagon on a 1,000-mile round trip from Norfolk to Devon and the South West. The results were nothing short of astounding. Our beeming Road Magazine baby girl loved the seat so much, we had trouble getting her out of it – even after eight hours solid driving there and again on the way back. And, cossetted to maximum comfort, she broke her all-time sleeping-in-the-car record, with over 75 minutes in one session and regular hour-long stints, where she’d previously only slept in the car for 30-45. If that’s not a testament to how comfy and secure she felt locked up in her car seat on a boring car journey, I don’t know what is! Amazing!
We found the ISOfix base and seat incredibly easy to fit into the Golf’s Isofix points, and equally easy to adjust around our Road Magazine baby. The straps and harness are really easy to adjust and the three-way reclining positions were an added bonus – enabling her to be in three different positions easily – upright and alert, chilled out, or ready for full sleep mode.
And whilst we had no need to clean the seats or harness on the trip – down to Project Ecowagon’s smooth ride and my driving of course! – the fact the seat covers and straps are easy to remove and wash makes it perfectly practical, as explosions from any angle are never that far away with a nine month old!
Love your cool baby gear, or want to make a future WRC star, or just want a brilliant car seat that works like a dream whilst looking fabulous? Then buy a RECARO seat today… you’ll not be sorry! We all absolutely LOVE ours. Thanks RECARO for making baby seats like this – cool, safe, practical and different!