Koochi Kick Start Car Seat review
In a nutshell
The Koochi KickStart is a forward-facing only car seat, comfortable and slimline, but better for older toddlers and cars without ISOFIX points.
- Lightweight, comfortable, fun colours
- Loose clip needed to secure seatbelt could easily get lost, too much Koochi branding.
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Kochi markets itself on being the provider of urban maneuverers for street savvy kids.
A new kid on the block in terms of parenting products (less than 4 years old), the brand is affiliated with another revolutionary company, Cosatto. Like it's sister company Kochi has an ever increasing collection of pushchairs and car seats.
Part of the new collection is the Kickstart (sometimes called Kick Start), a Group 1 seat that'll take little ones from around 9 months to approximately 4 years.
A forward-facing only seat, the Kickstart is universal fit - meaning it's installed in the car using a seat belt - has a 5-point safety harness with one-pull adjustment and a quick release buckle.
The Kickstart is a forward-facing from nine months car seat, would you prefer it to be a rear facing too?
The Kickstart is tested to the ECE R44/04, which means it complies with European testing standards and is very safe.
However, it's not i-Size, which is the new law (more info here) which requires babies to sit rear-facing until they are at least 15 months.
My son outgrew his first infant seat (which should've lasted 12 months) around nine months and I moved him into a bigger one, where he was a much happier traveller.
He’s 15 months now and if he hadn’t been facing forwards earlier travelling would have been hideous.
Instead he loves going on journeys now he can peak out the window. Personally I know the Kickstart has been safety tested and is safe, so I don’t feel there are any issues with him facing forward, especially as the seat is secured and installed properly.
How do you install the Koochi Kickstart in the car?
The Koochi Kickstart is universal fit, which means it's installed in the car using a seat belt and not using ISOFIX connectors or anchors.
The seat must be in the upright position to install. It was a bit fiddly to start with as the threading through of the seatbelt behind the chair took a few minutes to master, then the clip was required to tighten once the seatbelt was locked into place.
Still, I had ISOFIX with my son’s first car seat and I hated it. It was the biggest waste of money.
It was so stiff I could never remove the chair and even my husband struggled. I would never recommend ISOFIX and the fact the Kickstart doesn’t need one is a plus as far as I’m concerned.
The Koochi Kickstart is sold on its recline features, tell us about them
There are three recline positions – sleeping, reclined or upright and are easy to adjust by gripping a discreet handle on the front of the chair and pulling forwards.
To recline you simply squeeze the handle, which has an arrow on it, then slide the base into position. To lock, then let go of the recline handle until the seat clicks into place.
Is there much difference between the recline positions?
There isn’t a massive amount of difference between the recline positions but enough to make a difference.
We've got more multi-stage car seats here...
How is putting your little one in the seat?
Really easy and quick. There’s a five-point safety harness with quick release buckle.
The straps tighten nicely around my son’s chest and tummy and are nicely padded, so I feel like he is comfortable and secure.
The padded liner is extremely soft and smooth. To the touch it’s lovely and I can imagine sitting on it is even better. Henry seems super comfy, which is a feature that most appealed to me.
Is the frame strong and durable?
The frame seems strong and durable, however the plastic base has the potential to mark a car with leather seats if it was placed upon one for a long period of time.
How compact, if at all, is the Koochi Kickstart car seat?
The chair is narrower than the second stage seat we were previously using and that frees up space in the back seat, which is always a good thing when travelling with a tot.
It’s not hugely compact but smaller than other seats in the same class.
How portable and easy did you find to get in and out of the car?
The chair is much lighter than the first car seat we had so it was a breeze to move around, albeit not light as a feather.
Is the car seat easy to clean?
The seat pads are removable so yes. The harness can be cleaned by lightly sponging soapy water over it.
How does it compare to your previous car seat?
My other car seat for was a Maxi Cosi Tobi and they are quite different.
That one positions my son higher so he can look out the window easier. The method to fix the seat with the seatbelt is different with the Koochi Kickstart requiring the special clip to hold it into place.
It looks like the plastic ones you use to keep food airtight in a sandwich bag. It’s pretty likely that will be lost over time, so I feel that it should be attached to the seat to eliminate the chance of it being lost.
While the Koochi seems more comfortable I think the Maxi Cosi feels more secure.
What's in the box?
- Seatbelt clip
- Instruction manual
Is it easy to put together and install?
The instructions for the Koochi Kickstart are clearly written out, not in jargon, and the booklet has accompanying pictures at the back.
You can open it out and see both sections at the same time, which is helpful. It took five minutes to install but my husband said I didn’t do it correctly so I did need his help initially with the threading of the seatbelt.
This Koochi Kickstart car seat is available at Koochi and Kiddicare.
If you’re looking for a funky seat that stands out from the crowd and doesn’t break the bank then this is a perfect purchase.
It’s a good bargain, but be prepared to keep an eye on the seatbelt clip so it doesn’t go astray.
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|Model||Kick Start Car Seat|
|Height adjustible headrest||Yes|