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Suitable from birth, the Britax First Class Plus car seat might seem bulky at first, but will last until 4 years of age and offers the versatility of changing from rear to forward facing when your child’s old enough.
Don’t underestimate the importance of a comfy car seat for your newborn. And while the Britax First Class Plus might look big for a tiny baby, babies grow fast! So when dedicated Group 0 car seats have become cramped and uncomfortable for burly 6-month-olds, this car seat is still a good fit – even up till age 4.
As you’d expect with Britax, safety is paramount and the side impact and pitch control system promise to keep your baby as safe as possible. It’s a big bulky seat but it’s very flexible – with a soft, molded newborn insert to give a natural sleeping position. The audible click fasten and 5-point harness with one-pull adjustment mean it’s quick and easy to secure your child, once you get the hang of it. And the five recline positions for when the seat’s forward facing ensure happy nappers.
What we love
With my first son Finn I used a dedicated Group 0 car seat, and was doing the same with my second baby Noah until he hit 6 months and it dawned on me that squashing him into the tiny portable seat with no view might be contributing to his constant screaming. The Britax First Class Plus was quite a revelation. Still rearward facing, it’s a ‘big boys’ car seat that turns forward facing when he’s 9 months old. He is comfortable, high up so able to see out the window and (other than one hysterical journey) he’s been happy ever since.
Noah was too old to use the baby insert but my friends’ newborn was perfectly snug when we tried it out – his comfort and safety didn’t look in any way compromised by the fact this was actually a big car seat.
The Britax First Class Plus car seat reclines easily when in forward facing mode, and the covers pop off relatively easily for a quick wash in the machine.
What to watch out for
This is not a portable car seat so if you think you need a travel system this seat is not for you. However, if you’re a first time mum it might be worth asking other friends with similar lifestyles to you how much they actually did move their car seat around. Personally, as a fairly infrequent driver, I would have given up the portability of my Group 0 car seat for the happier, more comfortable child, particularly in that in-between stage of 6-9 months. And you don’t have to buy a second car seat to see them through to 4.
On the Britax First Class Plus, adjusting the straps between the three different height fittings is complicated and requires the car seat to be taken out of the car and turned upside down. It only has to be done three times in the life of the seat, but it isn’t very easy.
I also found the strap adjustment you do on a daily basis a little less user friendly than some other car seat models, but it’s getting easier with practice and isn’t a serious sticking point.
The height of the Britax First Class Plus can make it a bit tricky to wriggle your baby into the seat without clonking his head on the roof of the car. Our Vauxhall Zafira is tall, so the slight acrobatic move to get him over the restraining seat belt and under the car roof isn’t too bad, but people with smaller cars have found it very difficult.
Who is the Britax First Class Plus best for?
Mums looking for car seat with a long life that’ll to stay in one car.
The comfort factor of the Britax First Class Plus car seat puts it head and shoulders above the smaller newborn car seat options. The other huge benefit is that it can change from rearward facing to forward facing as your child’s need change. However, with this versatility and long life you sacrifice portability and travel system compatibility, and depending on your needs, this may or may not be a concern for you.
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|Model||First Class Plus|
|Child age (approx)||Birth to 4 years|
Dimensions & Weight
|Car seat installation||Non-isofix base|
|Travel system compatible||No|
|Positions of carry handle||None|
|Removeable cover for washing||Yes|