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Spanish manufacturer Jané is known for its safety and innovation, two elements that go hand in hand when looking to buy a car seat. Jané takes safety seriously — it built its own crash test research centre in 2003 and claims to go beyond the requirements of European safety testing on child car seats, something that’s very reassuring to parents.
The Jané Ikonic is the newest i-Size car seat from the nursery brand that’s been around since 1932 when it started producing folding strollers.
As my other half Sharps has just passed his driving test (I still can’t drive) safety is of paramount importance to us when it comes to getting in a car with our two little ones Ellis, 2 years, and his baby brother Theo, 9 months. So with Jané’s emphasis on making sure children are secure this car seat sounded perfect for us.
Retailing at £349 the Jané Ikonic’s main competitors are the slightly more expensive Recaro Zero.1 i-Size seat (£399) and the Maxi-Cosi AxissFix Plus i-Size (£395), both of which also rotate 360° and have similar features.
I was amazed by how quick and easy it was to install the Jané Ikonic car seat. And I was equally impressed when it came to strapping the boys in. The harness was so simple to use, even I could work it out without reading the instructions. I also love that this car seat rotates 360° as it means I can switch between rear and forward facing should I need to use it for either of my boys.
- See our pick of the 11 best i-Size car seats for babies and toddlers
The Jané Ikonic is sold overwhelmingly on the fact it’s has been designed to conform to the new car seat regulation ECE R129 (i-Size) – tell us about that.
The new European car seat regulation, i-Size, (part of the ECE R129 safety standard) means that children have to travel rear-facing until they’re 15 months as it’s deemed safer in a crash.
The Jané Ikonic can be used rear-facing until 4 years, and rearward facing seats can be five times safer than forward facing seats in a frontal collision.
But for i-Size, your car and car seat needs to have ISOFIX, which reduces the risk of car seats being fitted incorrectly.
It’s also important to note that unlike with older car seats with the i-Size it is height and not weight that determines what size you need. In addition, as part of the i-Size regulation car seats have to pass side impact tests that measure the effects of a crash on the head, improving the protection of your child’s head and neck.
The Jané Ikonic can be used rear-facing or forward-facing – what age child can sit in each position?
You can use the car seat rearward-facing from birth, with the newborn insert that’s included. Jané recommend you use it rearward-facing for children 40cm to 105cm tall with a maximum of 18kg, so the car seat can be used in this position up to approximately 4 years old.
From 15 months you can turn your child forward-facing and again use it in this position until the age of 4 years. Jané’s recommendation is you can use it forward facing for children 76cm to 105cm tall with a maximum of 18kg.
Do you think your children will fit in the seat for the full 4 years?
The seat does look quite roomy. Ellis has just turned two and still comfortably fits in it rear-facing, although he does have little legs.
I’d imagine it might be a bit of a squash as he gets older but facing forwards he wouldn’t have any problem at all.
How is the leg space when facing rearwards – is there enough space for a four-year-old, do you think?
It really depends on the size of your child. Ellis is fairly small so may be able to stay rear-facing for four years.
Theo on the other hand is a big baby and if he carries on growing at his current rate then there’s no way he’d be able to fit in it facing backwards till he’s four years.
How does it install in the car?
Effortlessly, and Jané provide two ISOFIX guides to make it even easier to fit, but you do need to have ISOFIX in your car. First you turn the handle on the side of the base to unfold the ISOFIX anchors.
Gravity causes the anti-rotation leg to drop down at the same time. Then you lock the anchors in place in your car’s connectors. You’ll know if it’s in properly as the two squares on the base will turn green. To make sure you’ve got car seat correctly positioned against the back seat of the car you turn the handle in the opposite direction.
I then pushed the leg lock out slightly away from the seat to get it at the right angle for the indicator at the front beneath the logo to go green. Finally you release the catch to extend the leg and pull it out till it lies flat on the floor. Again all three points on the anti-rotation leg should turn green so you know they’re locked in place.
It is worth noting that this car seat is heavy and not one I’d personally want to be taking in and out of a car on a regular basis. So if you’re looking for a car seat for occasional use, or one that you need to switch between cars, then this probably isn’t the car seat for you.
What kind of base will it fit into, how easy is it to slot in?
The car seat comes with a built in ISOFIX so you don’t need to buy an additional base for it. But your car does need to have ISOFIX otherwise you won’t be able to install it, definitely something you need to check before you buy.
What do you think of the 360 degree rotation?
I absolutely love the 360° rotation. It’s an incredibly useful feature to have as it means you don’t have to awkwardly bend over to try and get your child in and out of the car seat, although we tested it out in a two-door car which meant we couldn’t rotate it 90° to face the door. Ellis also found it quite fun to be swiveled round, making it easier it get him to sit it. All you have to do is pull the lever on the side, pull the seat towards you, release the lever and lock it in place.
Does the Jané Ikonic feel sturdy?
This car seat has some weight to it and both Ellis and Theo felt very secure in the car seat. The inner surface of the seat is covered with impact absorbing material for extra protection.
How comfortable is the Jané Ikonic?
Both Ellis and Theo looked pretty comfy when they were strapped in and looked well supported. The shell of the seat cover is ventilated and the headrest is padded, as are the shoulder straps and the crotch area around the buckle.
What do you think of the newborn insert?
The newborn insert can be used for babies up to 6 months, which is great as it means you can use this car seat from birth. I didn’t need to use it but it’s well padded and also uses some type of memory foam.
How is strapping your son/s in?
The hardest part of strapping Ellis in was getting him to sit still for long enough as using the actual straps themselves are pretty straight forward. The buckle mechanism on it is similar to doing up the one in my Baby Jogger buggy. What’s brilliant about them is that you don’t have to take the shoulder straps off to adjust them as they’re connected to the headrest. This made it really easy for me to switch between using it for Ellis and Theo.
What’s the headrest like?
The headrest has five adjustable settings, you can use them while your child is in the seat, and is covered in memory foam. It lies flat with the car seat casing so there are no gaps between it and the back of your child so they’re sitting up properly and are comfortable.
How do the headrest and harness adjust?
Another of my favourite things about this car seat is that you don’t have to rethread the five-point harness to adjust the headrest or straps. I’ve used car seats in the past that have given me a headache trying to work out how to rethread them through but this one is so simple it’s a pleasure to use.
You just push in the button at the front of the seat under the flap to loosen the straps. To tighten them you pull the strap at the front. By connecting the headrest and harness Jané say that it gives better protection to your baby in the event of a side impact and it supports their head at the same time.
How many recline positions are there, and how easy/difficult is it to recline?
There are four recline positions, both forward and rear facing. It’s really easy to do it either way, you just pull the lever on the front of the seat and select the position you want it in. And I was able to do it with one hand which is another bonus.
How portable is the Jané Ikonic?
One of the only downsides I could see to this car seat is that it’s really heavy. I couldn’t even lift it down the stairs by myself and there’s no way I’d be able to get it in and out of a car on a regular basis.
Is it travel system compatible?
No, because it is a Group 0+/1 car seat, you can’t use the Jané Ikonic as part of a travel system.
What do you think of the design?
I like the design of this car seat. It’s been well thought out with parents in mind. It’s robust, looks modern and is available in three different colours, black, red and soil, I tested out the black one.
What do you think of the size of the car seat?
It measures 67cm in height x 43cm in width and 67cm in depth. It feels like this car seat is massive but that’s probably because of the built in ISOFIX. The actual seat itself is roomy with plenty space for the boys to grow.
Is the Jané Ikonic easy to clean?
All of the covers are removable and machine washable at 30°C.
What’s in the box?
- Jané Ikonic car seat with built in ISOFIX
- 2 ISOFIX guides
- Newborn insert
Is it easy/hard to install the seat into the car? Instructions useful?
The most difficult part of installing the car seat was locating the English version of the instructions. I couldn’t find them anywhere and had to contact the distributor to ask if they had forgotten to include them. They hadn’t, it turned out for some strange reason they’re hidden away in a pocket in the back of the car seat itself. And after all that I didn’t find them particularly useful. I watched a helpful video online and fortunately the well-thought out design of the car seat made fitting it fairly intuitive and painless so it took minutes.
What would you have wanted to know before you purchased the Jané Ikonic?
It’s not portable and you can’t use it as part of a travel system. You also need to make sure your car has ISOFIX as you won’t be able to install it without it.
Who would the Jané Ikonic be most useful for?
Safety conscious parents who don’t want the hassle of having to upgrade from birth to the next stage car seat and who use their car as their main form of transport —this isn’t a car seat you want to be lugging in and out of the car.
Is the Jané Ikonic good value for money?
The Jané Ikonic costs £349. This sounds a lot but when you consider you don’t need to buy any extras, the ISOFIX is integrated and a newborn insert is included so you can use it from birth up to four years, it’s pretty reasonable. When you spread the cost over four years it works out to around £87 a year. My other car seat, a Group 0+ Baby Jogger City Go, cost £99 but can only be used until approx. 12-15 months (or 13kg).
This car seat is incredibly easy both to install and use. It’s stylish, roomy and has lots of useful features such as the 360° rotation and the no-nonsense adjustable straps and headrest. But you do need to have ISOFIX in your car and it is pretty heavy so it’s not a car seat you can take out and about.
Looking for more car seats…
- The best i-Size car seats for babies and toddlers
- 14 of the best car seats from birth
- 10 of the best rear-facing group 1 car seats
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|Model||Gravity i-Size car seat|
|Child age (approx)||Birth to 4 years|
|Child Height||40cm to 105cm|
Dimensions & Weight
|Travel system compatible||No|
|Positions of carry handle||None|
|Removeable cover for washing||Yes|