Of all the purchases a new parent makes, a car seat is perhaps the one that comes with the most thought. It is, of course, the first thing you place your baby into after you leave the hospital (so long as it’s properly installed) as well as piece of baby gear engineered to protect and secure your child in the case of an accident. So it’s a big purchase. But the best car seats have never been better. They’re safer and outfitted with more smart features than ever before. So when you’re looking for a new car seat, consider, if you will, the models below. Yes, they offer such perks as a sensor that tells you if a seatbelt is mistakenly unbuckled, smart side-impact protection, and a build that’s meant to grow with your baby (so you don’t need to buy another one a year later). Most important: they’re solid seats in which you can secure your child safely. Take a look.
Cybex Sirona M
All car seats are engineered to precise standards for safety, but the Cybex Sirona M has both slick engineering and a smart component to give you more info while in the front seat. The five-point safety harness, connected to an app on your smartphone, offers alerts for too hot/cold temperatures, stretch reminders on long road trips, and, most importantly, a warning should the seatbelt be unbuckled. For this blend of tech and function it’s won gobs of awards, likely being a harbinger of future child safety in the car.
EvenFlo Every Stage DLX Convertible Car Seat
One car seat for every age, from infancy until their 120lbs., this seat has 10 levels of adjustment as your kids grow. It’s rear-facing longer than most car seats, up to 50lbs., and lets parents adjust the headrest and straps simultaneously with just one hand. It installs easily with a visible bead level and has five leveling options. Also has a machine-washable seat pad and two dishwasher-safe cup holders. Tested for front, side and rollover impact.
UppaBaby Knox Car Seat
There’s a lot to like about the beloved brand’s first convertible car seat. A simple seat belt installation with an indicator that turns green when it’s secure takes all the guesswork out of installing the Knox correctly. And it comes loaded with safety features like side-impact absorbing pods that disperse the force in the event of a collision; a universal tether helps reduce rotation and stress from front or rear impacts; and an impact-absorbing headrest made with memory and EPP foam to also boost side-impact protection. As it’s convertible, it grows with your child, adjusting from rear (14-40 pounds) to forward-facing (25-65 pounds), so that you don’t have to buy a new car seat when your kid is ready to face the world. Coming this summer
Clek Liing Infant Car Seat
The Liing is not showy, but it packs everything new parents need. It weighs just nine pounds and has a one-handed quick-release that makes it easy to remove from the base or a stroller. It has an effortless and secure installation whether using LATCH or the Belt-Tensioning System (with the base) or using the European Belt Path (without the base). The recline is adjustable after the base has been installed, and it has an adjustable canopy with a mesh peekaboo window so you can always see your precious cargo.
Baby Jogger City View Car Seat
Designed with a slimmer profile, this seat, which supports children up to 100 pounds, is only 17.4 inches wide so it fits comfortably into smaller cars without sacrificing any of the support, safety, and comfort a child requires. The 19.5-pound seat can be set up as a rear-facing, forward facing, and high-back booster seat to accommodate growing children. It also features a 10-position adjustable headrest and harness and an anti-rebound bar that provides additional safety during rear-facing rides. There’s also a well-coded, fat-buttoned belt system that makes installation simple.