Carriers Carseats

The Best Infant Car Seats for Small Cars That You’ll Love

Do you own a small compact car and need to fit an infant car seat in it? Have you been trying to find a selection of the best ones but don’t know where to start? Look no further as we have found 4 of the best infant car seats for small cars to help you out!

Factors to Consider

One of the first things you need to do is figure out what you need and want in an infant car seat.  Things to think about include:

  • Cost – Set a budget of how much you would like to spend. Car seats do tend to be more expensive, but they do provide imperial safety while in a car! Although, an all-in-one car seat can tend to be cheaper in the long run.
  • Safety Seat Features – There are so many car seats available that offer different safety features. Be sure to read all product descriptions and make sure they meet safety standards.
  • What age range does the seat suit? Many car seats fit only a particular age, however, there are convertible car seats that will fit babies rear facing from birth right through until they are 5 forward facing. This option is way more budget friendly.
  • Easy to Install – You want a car seat that is safe and secure but also easy to install. Read the installation instructions to ensure it fits your vehicle.
  • Lightweight or heavy – Car seats can come in a range of weights. If you travel a lot or need to move the car seat around lots of times, it may be better to invest in a lightweight car seat.
  • Weight Limit – Related to the above is the amount of pounds a car seat is rated for. It’s very important that you not only look at the age range but also the weight restrictions especially when you are on the cusp of graduating to a toddler car seat. The weight limit is one of the first things I look at to help eliminate options, especially in the small car seat arena.
  • Check the features of the seat – Infant car seats always have extra features including more padding, a cup holder, or perhaps a better seat belt buckle system.
  • What is it made out of? Look to see if the fabric is soft, durable and breathable and that the fabric is easy to clean.

Buying Online vs. In-store

Buying online can often save you money and time especially if you cannot make it to the shop. However, it is a good idea to check out car seats at a store first!  This allows you to get a feel for the seat, to have a play with it, and to see its features and ensure it fits your car properly. Once you are happy with your decision then either buy in store or search online for the best and cheapest deal!

Here’s the Best Infant Car Seat for Small Cars:

Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat

Listed as a #1 Best Seller on Amazon, the Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seatis a favorite with many parents!

The Key features of this seat include an upfront harness adjustment, rear-facing recline,  4 harness position that accommodate growing children, 2 crotch buckle positions, a removable head pillow and it is machine washable for easy cleaning.

The Evenflo holds a rear-facing infant from 5-30lbs (height 19-37 inches) and a forward facing toddler from 22-40lbs (height 28-40 inches). The product dimensions are 18.5 x 22 x 25.5 Inches, ideal for small cars.

Pros:

  • Fit smaller cars.
  • Value for money.
  • Side impact tested

Cons:

  • The padded headrest is attached via Velcro that may make it easy for toddlers to pull off.
  • Can be tricky to install.

Maxi-Cosi Pria 70 Convertible Car Seat

The Maxi-Cosi Pria 70 Convertible Seat is designed to fit better in smaller cars allowing more room for other passengers.  This Amazon’s Choice car seat is also hugely popular for parents and caregivers.

Features include fitting babies rear-facing 9-40lbs or forward facing 22-70lbs.  It has an advanced air cushion design that helps protect your child’s head, a one-hand harness, and height adjustment with micro adjustment to get that perfect fit. Product dimensions are 30.5 x 18 x 17 Inches.

Pros:

  • Fits smaller cars.
  • Great quality and comfortable.
  • Side head support.

Cons:

  • Heavy Car seat.
  • Can be difficult to tighten seat buckles.

FAQ

What is the TinyFit System?

“TinyFit is a system designed to provide a superior fit for very small babies, as small as 4 pounds. It is a “seat within a seat”, providing more flexibility and adjustment for the occupant. The TinyFit system features a harness shoulder height starting at only 5”, an adjustable buckle system and a more reclined interior rear-facing angle that all contribute to the superior fit. Additionally, the TinyFit system allows the Pria 70 to be installed more upright when rear-facing, using less space in the vehicle. This creates more legroom for passengers in the front seat.” – Maxi Cosi

Graco Contender 65 Convertible Car Seat

The Grace Contender 65 Convertible Car Seat is designed to protect your baby rear facing from 5-40lbs and toddler forward facing from 20-65lbs and has been tested to meet or exceed US safety seat standards.

The child seat is designed with a simple, safe one hand adjustment harness system and a 8 position headrest that is easy to adjust. With Dimensions of 22×18.5×23.5 inches makes this an ideal contender for small cars.

An infant car seat that will last while your little one grows also has a removable cover to help with easy clean ups!

Pros:

  • Fits smaller cars.
  • Comfortable and easy to use.
  • Safety tested.

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have strap covers which can make the straps rub.
  • Can be difficult to tighten latch straps.

Review

“I researched seats for several months. I have a small car (Corolla) and I wanted something that I would be able to install in the center seat and not take up the whole back seat. This seat fits perfectly! I used the seat belt installation and it was very easy to install. I did read a lot of reviews stating the clips were hard to undo but I have not had any issues. It has very adequate padding and my 10 month old seems very comfortable. She squeals and giggles the whole time she is riding in it. I bought the seat in Cheer and it has the perfect amount of pink without being obnoxious. I love this seat and I am so glad I purchased it!” – mommalove914

Clek Foonf 2016 Convertible Car Seat

The Clek Foonf 2016 may not be light on a budget but does have a few amazing features! Dimensions of The Cleck Car seat is 16x17x28.5 inches which makes it fit perfectly in smaller vehicles. Many parents rave that it is well built and love that it can be used rear facing for an extended period of time.

Other features include revolutionary safety features, secure rigid latch installation, advanced side impact protection, steel anti-rebound bar.  This seat can be used from birth. However, you do need to purchase separately a Clek Infant Insert

Pros:

  • Fits smaller cars.
  • Extended rear facing.
  • Very sturdy and secure.

Cons:

  • It is a tall car seat which may obstruct visibility.
  • Accessories are expensive.

At a Glance:

Best Infant Car Seats for Small CarsKey FeaturesFabric and Harness SystemSizeWeight LimitPrice
Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Seat- Multiple shoulder harness.
- Upfront harness and buckle release.
- Integrated body cushion.
100% Polyester.18.5 x 22 x 25.5 inches.- Rear-facing infant from 5 - 30 lbs. (height: 19 - 37 inches).
- A forward-facing toddler from 22 - 40 lbs. (height: 28 - 40 inches).
$64 (Check out the latest prices here!)
Maxi-Cosi Pria 70 Convertible Car Seat- Advanced air cushion system.
- Deep rear facing adjustment for easier and quick install.
Made with premium fabrics.
- One-hand harness height adjustment
30.5 x 18 x 17 inches.- Rear-facing car seat 9-40lbs.
- Forward facing 22-70lbs.
$650 (Check out the latest prices here!)
Grace Contender 65 Convertible Car Seat- Easy installation.
- Removable head and body support cushions.
- Simply safe adjusts harness system.
- One-hand, 8-position adjustable headrest.
22 x 18.5 x 23.5 inches.- A rear-facing infant from 5 – 40lbs.
- A forward-facing toddler from 20-65lbs.
$108 (Check out the latest prices here!)
Clek Foonf 2016 Convertible Car Seat- Extended rear facing use.
- Steel anti-rebound bar.
- Secure rigid latch installation.
Adjustable structural headrest for side impact protection.16 x 17 x 28.5 inches.- Rear-facing use up to 50lbs.
- Forward facing use up to 65lbs.
$450 (Check out the latest prices here!)

Note: Another runner-up to consider might be the Chicco Keyfit. I almost included it in this list, but I liked the 4 above slightly more.

Some Final Thoughts

Searching for an infant car seat to fit your smaller vehicle doesn’t have to be tricky as long as you put in the research first. Until you get to the booster seat phase, this will likely continue to be an issue in small cars (beyond the infant car seat phase).

It is positive to see that there is a range of infant car seats available with great reviews and ratings to meet all budgets while not having to compromise on safety or features.

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