Let me tell you there are a lot of options out there. After researching for weeks I finally made a decision! Before I reveal which car seat we purchased let's meet the top contenders.
There are 100s of car seats to choose from, but only a few are top contenders [IMO]. I've narrowed it down to a few worth looking at. Once you get to this point it all comes down to personal preference, the baby, style, price and car fit. If purchasing online I suggest Amazon or Diapers.com because of the awesome free shipping and return policies. For a limited time, save 15% on select Baby Products sold and shipped by Amazon with code 15OFFBABY!
The below car seats include the following key features:
+ side-impact protection (extra foam or air pads at the side of baby's head)
+ compatibility with the LATCH system (a way to fasten the base tightly without using seatbelts)
Chicco NextFit [$299] - Available in grey, pink/black and burgundy/black.
Chicco NextFit CX [$329] - Available in grey.
Chicco NextFit [$349] - Available in four colors including black, blue and pink.
Britax Marathon G4.1 [$289/ currently $199] - Available in six colors/prints including black, kiwi and pink giraffe.
Britax USA Marathon ClickTight [$329/ currently $264] - Available in five colors including red, grey and purple.
Maxi Cosi Pria 70 [$274] - Available in 15 colors black, grey, tan red, pink and various prints.
Maxi-Cosi Pria 85 [$299] - Available in nine colors including black, navy, grey, pink and teal.
Graco Size4Me 65 [$179/ currently $169] - Available in six colors/prints including black, green and tan.
Graco 4ever All-in-One [$299] - Available in black, red, pink, and black/white stripped. Includes booster seat option. You'll never have to buy another car seat. Best bang for your buck.
Diono Radian RXT [$289] - Available in six colors including black, red, tan, grey and purple.
Please note, there are a number of very safe optionss under $200, but I was in the market for something above just a basic car seat. [i.e., built-in cup holders, plush fabric, etc.]
We ended up purchasing the Maxi-Cosi Pria 85 in Loyal Grey! We've only had it for a few days, but we love it. It came down to the Graco 4ever All-in-One Car Seat and Maxi-Cosi Pria 85. Each car seat had it's pros and cons, but we loved the Maxi-Cosi Pria 85 features a little more.
Do you have kids? What convertible car seat did you purchase?