Britax vs Chicco – which car seat is best?

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Britax and Chicco are two globally recognized and highly rated child car seat brands. A child car seat is one of the most important purchases you will make for your little one and you will want to make sure that you pick the best seat that suits your needs.

Often parents feel most comfortable choosing a well known popular brand such as Britax or Chicco. In this article we will focus on comparing Britax vs Chicco seats and the pros and cons of each. This will assist you in a decision if you are torn between the two.

​Britax versus Chicco - the Brands Compared

Britax vs Chicco
Chicco vs Britax

​Britax and Chicco are both global manufacturers of childcare products including car seats, strollers, travel systems, high chairs and accessories.

The Britax brand is synonymous with quality, safety and reliability and takes its name from ‘British Accessories’, a company that began making automotive safety equipment in 1938. The Britax company initially produced seatbelts and motorcycle accessories and it wasn’t until the 1970’s, that Britax started to manufacture child safety seats. Part of their growth has been through acquisitions of other established child seat manufacturers across the world such as RÖMER in Germany and Safe-n-Sound and Steelcraft in Australia. They have brought many innovations to child seat safety like Versa-Tether and True Side Impact Protection.

Chicco was founded in 1958 as a brand of the Italian company Artsana Group, a holistic, innovative lifestyle company. After the birth of his son Enrico, affectionately named Chicco, Artsana's founder Pietro Catelli created the Chicco brand to specialise in the field of baby care. Today Chicco is one of the top ten Italian brands among consumer goods in the world and the largest baby brand in all of Europe. Chicco continues to expand its distribution across the world and now supplies its products in more than 120 countries.

So in comparing the Britax vs Chicco brands it is clear that both have a long established history and success in producing childcare products.

​Comparison between Britax and Chicco Car Seats

We've reviewed and compared Britax vs Chicco child car seats in many of our other Kid Sitting Safe Reviews and the Britax Frontier, Marathon, Roundabout and Chicco KeyFit 30 and Nextfit seats are all included in our Top Rated Car Seats:

​In terms of car seats, both Britax and Chicco manufacture the main types: infant car seats, convertible car seats and booster seats. In addition, Britax manufacture Combination Harness-2-Booster Seats, however Chicco do not. We therefore can't compare Britax vs Chicco Combination seats in this review.

Both brands also manufacture travel systems to fit with their car seats.

We've considered the top models of seats from both brands in our Britax vs Chicco comparison that follows in the sections below:

  • Infant Car Seats - Britax B-Safe 35 Elite vs Chicco Keyfit 30 Zip
  • Convertible Car Seats - Britax Advocate Clicktight vs Chicco Nextfit Zip
  • Booster Seats - Britax Parkway SGL vs Chicco KidFit Zip 

Are Britax and Chicco Car Seats FAA Approved?

If you will be flying with a car seat then its good to know that ALL Britax harnessed car seats are certified for use on aircraft. The Chicco KeyFit, KeyFit 30 and NextFit car seats are also certified for aircraft use.

Britax vs Chicco Car Seat Safety

​As you would expect, both Britax and Chicco car seats comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards as required by law and incorporate the latest safety features such as a 5 point security harness, side impact protection, energy absorbing foam and removable safety inserts. In addition, Britax car seats feature SafeCell Impact Protection, which is an integrated system of safety components that work together to protect your child well beyond the federal safety standards.

Britax vs Chicco Infant Car Seat Base

Both Britax and Chicco rear facing infant car seats can be used with (or without) a car seat base. This is a popular addition to provide quicker and easier installation and removal and usually comes as standard with purchase of the infant car seat. Additional bases can be purchased separately if you have more than one car. Both Chicco and Britax car seat bases come with a dual bubble level-indicator that indicate the accurate angle in the vehicle seat.

Britax vs Chicco Infant Car Seats

Britax B-Safe 35 Elite vs Chicco Keyfit 30 Zip

Britax B Safe 35 Elite Infant Seat

Chicco Key Fit 30 Zip

Weight - seat only

11.5lbs

9lbs

Weight - base only

9lbs

8lbs

Baby Weight

4-35lbs

4-30lbs

Maximum Baby Height

32 inches

30 inches

Dimensions 

17.75" W x 25" H x 26.5" D

17.2" W x 15" H x 28.5" D

NHTSA Overall Ease of Use Rating

Price

Features

2 layers of side protection formed by a deep foam-lined shell and quick-adjust head protection.

Impact-absorbing base and Impact-stabilizing steel frame.

SafeCenter LATCH Installation - tighten easily and quickly.

Spring-assisted recline makes for easy angle adjustment.

Dual level indicators let you know the seat is angled correctly in your car.

Quick-adjust no-rethread harness makes it easy to change the harness height as your child grows.

Quick-adjust 2-position buckle easily moves outward as your baby gets bigger.

Plush foam padding and fabrics for luxurious comfort.

Easy-remove cover - without having to remove the harness.

Removable body pad acts as a cushion for your child.

Extra-large canopy protects your little one from sun and rain.

ReclineSure® Leveling Foot adjusts to fit vehicle seat angle

SuperCinch® One-pull LATCH Tightener uses force-multiplying technology to achieve a tight, secure fit with a fraction of the effort

Removable padded infant insert for babies 4-11 lbs.

Quick-remove, machine-washable seat pad

Zip-off canopy, zip-on visor and zip-around boot

Seat interior lined with EPS energy-absorbing foam for improved impact protection

Adjustable, multi-position canopy

Easy removal from both stroller and base

Smooth underside of base helps protect against damage to vehicle seats

Easy vehicle belt routing and a built in lock-off system accommodate vehicles without LATCH

Pros

  • Automatic sliding head rest adjustment is really cool! You dont have to take anything apart to custom fit it to your baby as they grow;
  • Best for safety features​;
  • It has a higher weight and height limits compared to the Chicco Keyfit so it will last you slightly longer before baby grows out of it;​
  • Extra large canopy.
  • Zip features provide added convenience and luxury;
  • Quick remove seat pad that is machine-washable for easy cleanup;
  • Slightly lighter than the Britax B-Safe​.

Cons

  • Some users have complained there is not enough growing room in the seat and babies grow out of it too quickly;
  • Interior space is narrow and better suited to thinner babies.
  • The Chicco Keyfit30 canopy doesn't cover as well as on the Britax B-Safe and can be a little stiff to open and close;
  • The Chicco seat has a lower weight limit​ than the Britax;
  • Zippers are a little difficult to use for some.​

The above comparison of the Chicco Keyfit30 vs Britax B-Safe 35 Elite shows you that both seats are very stylish, fairly light and provide exceptional safety and comfort features. The addition of the zippers to the canopy, visor and boot are a nice addition to the Chicco, and offers good value for the additional $30 more than the standard Keyfit 30 model that this feature costs.

Both of these seats are highly rated, however only the Chicco Keyfit30 is an Editor's Pick for 2016 on the respected Car Seat Blog ratings. By contrast the Britax B-Safe 35 has a higher overall NHTSA Ease of Use Rating than the Chicco Keyfit30. The Chicco seat didn't do as well as the Britax B-Safe in the ratings system for installation features, securing the child and evaluation of labels.

There is only a small difference in the weight of the two seats, the Britax B-Safe being slightly heavier than the Chicco Keyfit30. Another key difference to consider is that the internal space of the Britax B-safe is narrower than the Chicco Keyfit30. However the canopy of the Britax is extra large and provides greater coverage than the canopy on the Chicco model.

​Stroller compatability

  • The Chicco Keyfit30 is compatible with the following strollers: Chicco Bravo, Urban, Cortina, Neuvo, TRE, Activ3, Cortina Together, Liteway Plus and KeyFit Caddy.
  • The Britax B-Safe 35 Elite has an integrated CLICK & GO adapter system, which works with Britax B-Series strollers.​

Britax vs Chicco Convertible Car Seats

Britax Advocate Clicktight vs Chicco Nextfit Zip

Britax Advocate ClickTight

Chicco Nextfit Zip

Weight

30.1 lbs

26.2 lbs

Child Weight - Rear Facing

5 - 40 lbs

5-40 lbs

Child Weight - Forward Facing

1 year and 20, up to 65 lbs

22-65 lbs

Maximum Child Height

49" or less

49 inches

Dimensions 

23D x 20.5W x 23.5H inches

21D x 19W x 29.2H inches

NHTSA Overall Ease of Use Rating - RF

NHTSA Overall Ease of Use Rating - FF

Price

Features

3 layers of side impact protection formed by a deep foam-lined shell, quick-adjust head protection and energy-absorbing side cushions.

Impact-absorbing base, impact-stabilizing steel frame and impact-absorbing harness pads.

ClickTight Installation System makes safe installation as easy as buckling a seat belt.

7-position recline makes for easy angle adjustment.

No-rethread 14-position harness quickly adjusts with the push of a button as your child grows.

Removable body pillow adds comfort and can be removed when your child outgrows it.

Plush foam padding and fabrics for premium comfort.

Click & Safe Snug Harness Indicator makes an audible sound when the harness is within range of proper tightness.

Easy-remove cover pulls free of the car seat for cleaning without having to remove the harness.

ReclineSure® 9-position Leveling System for an accurate fit in a wider range of vehicles

Exclusive SuperCinch® LATCH Tightener

Zip & Wash™ Seat Pad easily zips out from shell

Padded ComfortFlex™ Harness Management System

Thermal-insulated cup holder with storage pocket

Infant insert for smaller babies

5-point harness with one-pull tightener

2-position chest clip for growing children

6-position adjustable headrest

Auto-adjust shoulder straps that widen as headrest is raised

Integrated LATCH storage compartments

Pros

  • Easy installation with either LATCH or seatbelt;
  • The click feature when tightening the straps is really helpful (clicks when straps are appropriately tight around baby)​.
  • Zip features provide added convenience and luxury.
  • Fits a wide range of children well – including small newborns;
  • Very easy installation with LATCH using SuperCinch technology​ or with seatbelt;
  • Premium push-on SafeGuard lower LATCH connectors​.

Cons

  • S​ome users have had difficulty removing the seat using the Click-Tight button system​.
  • Some users have complained that the harness straps are always uneven​ and are too short.
  • Some users report that the tether and anchor strap compartments pop open on their own.
  • Very heavy and much heavier than the Chicco Nextfit Zip (although this is due to the solid impact stabilizing steel frame, the major safety feature).
  • Does not come complete with a cup holder, which needs to be bought separately.
  • Small number of users have stated that the deep sides can make it hard to put the child in the seat, especially rear-facing and/or in a high car​.
  • Large base can make it less easy to install well in contoured seats.​

In this Britax vs Chicco Convertible Car Seat comparison you can see that both of these seats have premium safety, comfort and convenience/ ease of use features. Both seats feature push on LATCH connections for super easy installation. The Chicco Nextfit Zip probably has the edge over the Britax Advocate Clicktight in terms of features due to the inclusion of a cup holder (has to be bought separately on the Britax) and the removable zipped seat pad. The Chicco also weighs much less than the Britax.

In terms of car seat ratings, the Britax Advocate has a higher overall score from NHTSA for ease of use when in Forward Facing mode. The Britax and Chicco seats share the same score for rear facing mode.

However, based on our review of user feedback there appears to be much more negative feedback about the Britax than the Chicco​. Most of the negative feedback about the Britax Advocate centers on difficulty removing the seat and use of the ClickTight feature. 

The Chicco Nextfit is also an Editor's Pick for 2016 on the Car Seat Blog, which we consider a credible source. 

Britax vs Chicco Booster Seats

Britax Parkway SGL vs Chicco KidFit Zip

Britax Parkway SGL G1.1

Chicco KidFit Zip

Weight

12.5 lbs

11 lbs

Child Weight

40 - 120 lbs

30 - 110 lbs

Child Height

38 - 63 inches

38 - 57 inches

Dimensions 

35 H x 18 W x 15 D inches

32.75 H x 18.75 W x 16.5 D inches

NHTSA Overall Ease of Use Rating

Price

Features

2 layers of side impact protection

Impact-absorbing base

ISOFLEXTM LATCH connection system

Quick-adjust headrest easily adjusts at the push of a button Plush foam padding and fabrics

SecureGuard clip ensures the vehicle seat belt is properly positioned

Retractable cup holders

Removable back for easy transition to a backless booster

Easy-remove cover

Color-coded vehicle belt guides

DuoZone® combined head and shoulder side-impact protection with 10 positions

SuperCinch® LATCH attachment and one-pull tightener

ErgoBoost® triple foam padding and contoured seat design

Zip&Wash extra zip-off backrest pad and seat pad

Extra pop-out armrest covers

2 space-saving cup holders fold away when not in use and are removable

Bonus KidConsole fits into cup holder to carry big-kid necessities

2-position backrest adjusts to mimic vehicle seat position

Easy-to-use vehicle belt guides

Removable backrest for use as backless booster

Pros

  • LATCH is very easy to use and secures the seat well when not in use;
  • Great side impact and head protection​;
  • Users report that their kids say the seat is very comfortable;​
  • The seat adjusts to the exact height you need it, not just 3 positions like many other boosters;
  • Seatbelt shoulder path is clear and the belt does not get stuck in the guide.
  • Zip off cover for easy cleaning;
  • The cupholders can flex in and be removed for washing or to get out of the way if the booster is placed next to another carseat;
  • Cup holder extender compartment for holding random toys;
  • The cover is machine washable;
  • The LATCH is simple to install​;
  • Lightweight and easy to transport from car to car​;
  • The belt path is a different color, making it easy for your child to remember where the belt should always be​.

Cons

  • Although the Britax booster is fairly lightweight it is heavier than the Chicco Kidfit;
  • The Britax is slightly narrower than the Chicco Kidfit​ and the seat is also not as deep;
  • No recline;
  • Arm rests could be longer and higher.
  • Head protection is only lightly padded.

In our Britax vs Chicco belt positioning booster seat comparison above you can see the key differences between these two seats. 

Although the Britax Parkway SGL achieves a lower NHTSA ease of use rating than the Chicco Kidfit, the Britax Parkway is a Car Seat Blog Editor's Pick and is a strong favourite of ours here at Kid Sitting Safe. We rated it the best mid-range high back booster seat in our Booster Seat Reviews for 2016.

Both of these booster seats are highly rated by their users with the majority of users providing the highest score rating.​ However the Britax Parkway SGL is a best seller and is the most popular seat of the two.

Conclusion

In this Britax vs Chicco review we've compared the latest premium seats from each brand. If you choose a seat for your child from either brand you can be sure that you are getting a good quality product that will provide the best protection for your loved one.​ The seats from Britax and Chicco also provide a high level of comfort and additional convenience features. We hope our side-by-side comparison of these Britax vs Chicco seats will help you choose the right seat for you!

As ever, if you have any comments or questions relating to this article​ we would love to hear from you so please don't hesitate to get in touch!

 

 

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