What every best Convertible Car Seats has:
- Adequate height and weight limits.
- LATCH system for easy installation.
- Adjustable harness heights.
The Combi Coccoro stands out in the world of compact car seats because it's both narrow and short-shelled. That means you can fit three across, without sacrificing leg room in the front seats. It's also lighter than most seats at around 14 pounds, making it easier to take in and out of the car. It accommodates children from 3 to 33 pounds rear-facing, with an infant positioner to help accommodate the smallest babies, and 20 to 40 pounds forward-facing. Children must be less than 40 inches tall.
Parents with a smaller car or smaller budget appreciate the Safety 1st Guide 65 for its small footprint and modest price. Unlike some other inexpensive convertibles, the Guide 65 still can accommodate children as heavy as 65 pounds forward-facing, and it gets good marks in independent crash tests. Not only is the Guide 65 narrow enough to fit three across, it's short-shelled enough to be a good candidate for compact cars without a lot of space behind the front seats.
Bulky convertible car seats can be beasts to install properly, but reviewers say the Chicco NextFit bucks that trend. SuperCinch LATCH straps and nine built-in recline positions are among the features that make getting a rock-solid installation no problem. The seat also boasts a no-rethread harness and machine-washable cover. All this ease of use doesn't sacrifice safety -- deep head wings and a steel-reinforced frame help make the NextFit a standout there, too. The NextFit is also long-lived, accommodating kids up to 65 pounds.
Cheaper convertible car seats sometimes have lower height and weight limits, but the Evenflo SureRide DLX can keep big kids safe up to 65 pounds and 54 inches. At 13.5 pounds, it's lighter than many convertible car seats – a nice bonus for parents who may have to move it from car to car – and fairly easy to install despite basic features in that category. The SureRide also receives the highest possible safety ratings from independent testing organizations.