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October 6, 2020

Best Rear Facing Car Seats for Small Cars (Guide 2020)

If you have a small car, you have to be more careful when choosing the best rear facing car seats for small cars. Whether you are searching for an infant car seat, a convertible car seat, or an all-in-one, you need to give close attention to the dimensions of the car seat and ease of use to make sure you limit the amount of difficulty you will have getting it into and out of your small car.

Best Rear Facing Car Seats for Small Cars

Best Rear Facing Car Seats for Small Cars

List of Rear Facing Car Seats for Small Cars

  • Diono Radian 3RXT Convertible Car Seat
  • Graco Milestone Convertible Car Seat
  • Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

Best Rear Facing Car Seats for Small Cars in 2020

Diono Radian 3RXT Convertible Car Seat

Diono Radian 3RXT Convertible Car Seat

Diono Radian 3RXT Convertible Car Seat

The Diono Radian 3RXT is an extremely luxurious and stylish infant convertible car seat. The design includes rear-facing and fort facing modes in addition to a toddler booster seat to help ensure this is the only infant car seat parents will need to buy for their kids. Diono Radian has a well-deserved reputation for designing narrow rear facing car seats for small cars. This enables parents to securely install three separate car seats in the small car with less effort to accommodate multiple children.

The excellent design of the car seat takes modern family cars into consideration. This ensures the child's car seat will easily fit into smaller vehicles. Parents and Guardians need to be aware the Diono convertible car seat is at the high-end. If the parents are on a low budget, this amazing rear-facing car seat is most likely not an option. The Diono 3RXT is an expensive purchase including exceptional comfort and safety features.

Diono 3RXT Specs

  • Rear-facing mode for babies and toddlers from 5-45 pounds
  • The maximum height for the rear-facing position is 44 inches
  • The weight range for the forward-facing mode is between 20 and 65 pounds
  • The maximum height for the forward-facing position is 57 inches
  • The weight range for the booster mode is between 50 and 120 pounds
  • The baby's shoulders must be above the fourth harness slot for the toddler's booster mode
  • The child should be a minimum of five years old prior to using the booster mode
  • Without the insert, 8 inches is the lowest harness height
  • The maximum height for the harness is 17 inches
  • The buckle positions for the crotch strap are two and one-half, five and seven inches
  • The depth of the car seat pan is 12.5 inches
  • The width of the car seat pan at the child's hips is 12 inches
  • The Shell height is 24.5 inches
  • Car seat weight is 24 pounds
  • The top belt guide position for the children should belt in booster mode is 17 inches
  • The limit for the lower anchor weight is about 40 pounds for forward facing, 35 for rear-facing mode
  • Expires after 10 years from manufacture date

Most Suitable For

The convertible car seat is suitable choices for different weights and heights depending on the mode selected. The rear-facing seat mode can be used for new babies only 5 pounds until your child is 45 pounds. The forward-facing seat mode includes a 5-point harness system for children a maximum of 65 pounds. The booster mode is specially designed for a child from 50 to 120 pounds. The height limit for all the 3 modes is 44 inches.

What is Included

The infant car seat includes a cup holder and an infant insert with 2 sections. And extra accessories are available separately.

Pros

  • Proven manufacturer of safety record
  • The back cover comes in a wide selection of colors
  • High-quality steel frame
  • Harness tightening with only one pull
  • SuperLATCH connectors and secure installation
  • Safe harness system
  • 10 year of expiration
  • Folds flat for easy storage
  • Low profile sides
  • Both latch and belt fittings
  • Narrow width enables easy installation of 3 car seat side by side
  • A rear-facing tether is used
  • Includes EPS foam liner for energy absorption, extra safety, and comfort

Cons

  • Adjustments may be obscured
  • Passenger legroom in the front of the car is a bit limited
  • To change the height, parents need to rethread the harness straps
  • One single recline angle in the rear-facing mode
  • Heavy

Graco Milestone Convertible Car Seat

Graco Milestone Convertible Car Seat

Graco Milestone Convertible Car Seat

 

The Graco Milestone convertible is designed for parents who want a good quality, a long-lived car seat that they can use for many years to come, without spending a fortune. Graco made the Milestone car seat as a more affordable alternative to the Graco 4-in-1 4Ever, with quite similar features and the longevity, but at a cheaper price.

For parents or guardians who love the proven safety standards and quality of car seats, and want a single convertible seat that can fit comfortably to protect a child for up to 10 years, the Graco Milestone Convertible is an excellent option. Even much better, among other convertible car seats with this kind of longevity, it isn't as heavy or big as a regular car seat, so installation is a snap. The Graco Milestone is a great combination of safety, convenience, and value in an infant convertible car seat.

This convertible car seat has 3 modes: forward-facing, rear-facing, and a belt-positioning high backed booster. It’s a pretty narrow booster seat for small cars, at about 17 inches wide. The Milestone car seat comes with a removable support cushion for your infants and is equipped with a detachable cup holder.

Graco Milestone Convertible Specs

  • Graco Milestone car seat has rear-facing weight limits: 5 -40 pounds
  • The rear-facing height limit: top of the baby's head must be at least 1 inch below the handle
  • The forward-facing weight limit: 20 – 65 pounds
  • The forward-facing height limit: 27 – 49 inches
  • High-backed booster's weight limit: 30 – 100 pounds
  • High-backed booster's height limit: 38 – 57 inches
  • Weight of Car seat: 20 pounds
  • Dimensions of car seat: 21 x 17.5 x 21 inches
  • Expiration: 10 years from the date of manufacture

Pros

  • Very long life, rated for children weight between 5 and 100 pounds
  • Superior safety features including side-impact testing, crash testing, and temperature testing
  • Harness adjustment is relatively fast and easy, without rethreading
  • Seat cover and seat cushion can be removed for cleaning without rethreading
  • InRight LATCH anchor system installs more quickly, with an audible click to ensure safe locking so you know it's secure
  • The cup holder can be removed when extra space is needed
  • FAA approved

Cons

  • You can find it difficult to convert between installation modes
  • Only 2 select desired rear-facing recline modes and only 4 recline levels overall

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

The Baby Trend EZ is a very inexpensive, easy to install the car seat with excellent crash-test results. This budget-friendly car seat is a good option for families on a limited budget or those searching for a second seat for a child's caregiver or less often used car. While it may be somewhat lacking in the nicer comfort-based features like thick soft padding and softer fabric liner, the Baby Trend EZ Flex gets the job done and is very easy to install. The EZ Flex isn't the good quality and it has some less than safety features like a frumpy canopy and harder put the chest clip.

That being said, it is a great option if you are looking for the most narrow rear-facing car seat for a small car. After all, you will get 1 year of use out of your baby bucket seat before you have to move your toddler into a convertible car seat.

The Baby Trend EZ scores about average for the crash test analysis system. This car seat complies with federal guidelines outlined in FMVSS and is considered safe. This car seat has truly unique LATCH mechanism connectors that are easier to get on and off of the anchors. Installing the EX without the base is usually straightforward.

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Specs

  • Weight of car seat: 21.2lbs
  • Height of car seat: 25 inches
  • Depth of car seat: 26 inches
  • Listed seat width: 16.5 inches

Pros

  • Good or comfortable carrying handle
  • Fits small kids securely
  • Washable and removable car seat cover
  • Ease of installation and adjustable
  • Some models are compatible with Baby Trend strollers

Cons

  • All models do not have Snap Tech
  • Many adjustment procedures based on a model

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Kaysar Rahman


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