Key features of the Jané Grand Group 1/2/3 car seat:
Age suitability: 9 months to 12 years (9-36kg)
Installation: Universal ISOFIX with Top Tether
Seat position: Forward-facing only seat
Features: Multi-stage car seat; side impact protection; harness to 18kg;
The Jane Grand car seat is a group 1-2-3 car seat, suitable for children between the ages of 9 months and 12 years.
According to Jane, the seat has been made to comply with the new i-Size law, meaning it must have ISOFIX connectors and pass a side impact test.
Fitted with a Top Tether (anti-rotation strap), features impact-absorbing materials and has been designed to have a quick and easy to installation.
The Grand features ventilation in the shell, the upholstery is removable and washable, there is a 3-position headrest and 3-position recline.
The integrated 5-point harness features a one-pull adjustment and the seat bagged the Gold Award in the MadeForMums Awards 2018 for Best multistage and combination car seat.
It is not the cheapest car seat on the market – at £279, you do have to splash the cash. However, for its practicality, durability and ease of use, it is a good investment to make. You can buy the Grand car seat at Jane or Mothercare.
Meanwhile, the Kiddy Phoenixfix 3 (£189.99) is another lightweight seat at 6.6kg but is only suitable until 4 years old.
Is there a safety issue with the Jané Grand?
I was alarmed to read the Which! report where the seat has failed safety tests. I can definitely understand how it is concerning and can see why a report like that would probably stop parents from buying this seat. At MadeForMums we regularly have contact with car seat makers and covered the news of the recent safety test report by Which?
According to the consumer group, the Jané Grand was unsafe in the event of a front impact crash and when tested in Group 1 mode, the seat ISOFIX connectors “couldn’t withstand the high forces of the frontal impact crash and broke”.
This did indeed lead to car seat makers Jané issuing a voluntary recall and a replacement programme of its Grand car seat in June 2017. Jané is waiting for the seat to be re-reviewed in the autumn of 2018 and expects it to pass all the tests.
Following an internal investigation by the car seat manufacturer, the brand is disputing the consumer site’s findings, arguing that the ISOFIX connectors on the Grand car seat did not break.
According to Jané, the actual problem with the tested seat is that it had a missing washer. This resulted in the seat moving 7cm when it was put in a crash test situation.
Jané claims this movement is still within the parameters of the ADAC Eurotest “and at no time did the Grand car seat become detached from the ISOFIX mountings as inaccurately stated” [in the report].
Are all Jane Grand car seats affected?
No, there were 150 Grand car seats sold in the UK before the seat was tested. As soon as the results were known, Jané physically inspected all Grand car seats in the UK and found them to be safe.
What’s the best age child for the Jane Grand car seat and why?
This car seat is suitable for children from the ages of 9 months to 12 years, or 135cm tall.
I tested the car seat on my two daughters – Mili aged 6 and Tara, 3. The car seat is great for pre-schoolers, who are old enough to sit forward-facing, but still use a 5-point harness. It is also a great sized seat for primary school kids, as the harness has a one-pull adjustment is suitable for children weighing between 9 and 18 kg.
The harness itself is very easy to use, and I loved that you could adjust it with just one hand! Mums always have their hands full so this was a good feature.
Saying that, I find that many girls, and plenty of boys, seem to have reached the legal height of 135cm by the time they are 10-years-old.
So this is not the longest-lasting seat.
Tell us about the top tether
The ISOFIX system in the Jane Grand comes with the top tether which, is the anti-rotation strap at the back of the car seat. It is the third point of anchorage, after the two ISOFIX bars.
The top tether strap must have an indicator on it to show when it has been pulled tightly enough. The seat is then classified as Universal fitting.
The seat is ISOFIX connection only. I found it very easy to install and even on the few occasions I took it out and put it back in. It was no bother, except perhaps for the weight of the seat itself.
How is strapping your child/ren in?
Strapping the children in was very easy. The belts are quick and easy to tighten and adjust for each child.
What do you think of the design?
It was a fairly regular design and reminded me of many similar-looking car seats I have tested. However, there is a sturdiness in the design that makes you feel confident that the seat is strong and comfortable for your child.
Does it feel sturdy?
Yes, the seat is very solid looking.
What’s the headrest like?
I liked that the headrest is very padded and shaped to protect a child’s head, especially in the case of side impact. Perfect also if, like Tara, your child has a habit of napping in the car.
How many positions does the headrest have?
There are three different headrest positions, which I felt adequately covered most ages.
How many seat positions are there and how easy is it to recline the seat?
The seat is very easy to recline – another very positive aspect. There are three recline positions which are perfect to cover all children’s needs. My children were comfortable in the seat at all times.
Do you think the side wings provide good protection?
The side wings, like the headrest, are well padded and curved, giving the impression of a snug and secure fit.
What do you think of the size of the car seat?
I did find the car seat a little bulky and heavy, but if it was lightweight, I would not feel convinced that it was safe enough. As long as you don’t have to keep taking it in and out of the car, the size should not be an issue.
Is it easy to clean?
The seats are wipeclean, which is always a big bonus. Spills will happen so the fact that the covers are removable and washable is great news.
How heavy is it?
At 12.3kg, I think the seat is definitely on the heavy side. But if you intend to fix it in and leave it, it should be no problem. If you will need to keep moving it around, it may be a task.
Is it value for money?
The seat is not cheap – it’s a tad more expensive than other similar-looking Group 1-2-3 car seats. The ‘safety’ aspect of the Jane Grand perhaps makes parents think it is worth paying the extra.
The Jane Grand is a well made car seat which is reassuringly solid and strong. Well worth the asking price if you use it for the full 12 years.
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