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British brand, Silver Cross, has been manufacturing baby products since 1877. It is best known for its production of baby prams and pushchairs and its links to the royal family. In fact, Silver Cross was honoured with a Royal Warrant for pram production in the early 20th century.
The luxury brand has previously developed two car seats – the Simplicity and Quantum – and this summer released a new range of four car seats, including the Motion.
The Motion is an i-Size approved swivel car seat suitable for use from birth up to the age of four. At £350, it sits at the higher end of the market along with similar seats such as the Cybex Sirona S i-Size (£300) and the gb Vaya car seat (£375). There are some cheaper alternatives available, however most of them have not yet been tested to i-Size standards.
Bringing car seats into the 21st century, and for extra peace of mind, you can download Silver Cross’ car safety app for a simple step by step guide on fitting your car seat correctly. Simply search “Car Safety Made Simple” in the Apple App Store or Google Play and download.
Rykesha Hudson is a mum to an eight-month-old baby girl and uses a car seat daily for local trips to visit family and the local amenities.
It’s HUGE. I wasn’t expecting the car seat to be so big and heavy, but considering it can be used up until your child reaches approximately four years old, it makes sense. The design and fabric also really caught my eye – the grey marl and black combo is really cool and stylish and it’s really plush and comfortable.
How is it different to the Silver Cross Simplicity?
The Simplicity and Motion car seats are worlds apart. The Simplicity baby car seat is compatible with all Silver Cross combination prams, so it’s great if you’re looking for a travel system. Unfortunately for me, as I have a Silver Cross buggy, the Motion cannot be used as a travel system. The Simplicity also comes in a large range of fabric colours, allowing you to choose a colour to suit your individual style, but the Motion, for the time being, comes in just the one colourway.
Another big difference is that the Simplicity can be used either with a seat belt or the specially designed simplifix ISOFIX base, whereas the Motion can only be used with the affixed ISOFIX base.
What age is the Silver Cross Motion suitable for?
The car seat is suitable for children measuring between 40-105cm. It includes a detachable newborn insert so is suitable from birth to when your child is roughly four years old. As it’s not a portable seat, I don’t think it’s the best thing to use when you have a newborn as you’re forced to carry them to and from the car in your arms.
Not only will you probably end up waking the baby, it also means there’s nothing protecting them from the elements. Having used the seat with my 8-month-old daughter, I think the Motion is better suited for babies aged six months plus who you’d be more comfortable carrying outside.
How do you install the Silver Cross Motion in the car?
Easy peasy. John Lewis customers, as well as parents we surveyed*, also had no problem installing the seat. With just a few clicks the car seat was fully installed. Green indicators on the supporting leg and base show when you’ve fitted the ISOFIX connectors correctly and the seat is safely locked. The car seat cannot be used with a seatbelt alone so make sure you check your vehicle is compatible with the car seat before making your purchase.
It only has to be installed on the ISOFIX once for the first time, then it can be swivelled from rear-facing to forward-facing, or side-facing by simply pressing a button.
What’s the ‘Car Safety Made Simple’ app and how useful is it?
I was surprised that the seat didn’t come with a physical manual. Instead, you have to download the Silver Cross Car Safety Made Simple app to get a step-by-step video guide and a digital manual, but John Lewis parents were fans of this.
The mobile app links to a QR code on your car seat and will automatically direct you to a five-step installation guide. The easy to follow guide uses CGI and audio but frustratingly, the videos can’t be paused, so if you want to double-check something, you have to watch the whole step again. It can be pretty daunting preparing a car seat for the first time, but the simple checklist gives you peace of mind that the car seat is fitted safely and correctly. You can also use the app to check if your vehicle is compatible.
Does the Silver Cross Motion feel securely installed, once in place?
The car seat comes fixed to the ISOFIX base as one unit so once installed, it feels extremely secure and safe.
How is strapping your child into the seat? How did you like the harness?
There’s a five-point harness that securely straps your child into place. Both the shoulder and waist straps are padded and feel snug and comfortable on my baby. Adjusting the harness to the correct size of your child is easy by pressing the release button on the front of the car seat and loosening the shoulder belts by pulling them towards you. To make it tighter, you simply pull the harness adjustment strap at the base of the seat.
Silver Cross and John Lewis customers, MFM readers, the parents we surveyed and I loved how the swivel feature makes strapping in a breeze – no more faffing about and breaking your back and neck to see what you’re doing. With just one button, you can rotate the seat to the loading position where you can see everything more clearly and there’s less strain on the back.
Does the Silver Cross Motion feel sturdy and safe?
It feels incredibly sturdy and robust so I can confidently drive knowing my daughter is safe. The seat also comes with the unique Motion Safe side impact protection.
Are there different seat positions?
There are three recline features so whether your child wants to be upright to see the world outside the window or is having a snooze, there’s a comfortable position for them. To change the recline, you push and squeeze a button underneath the seat which can be done with just one hand. The recline positions can be used both forward and rearward facing. I noticed the recline function was a little jerky so if you notice your baby has nodded off and you want to get out and change to a lower recline, there’s a risk they could wake up.
How do you adjust the size of the seat as your child grows, and how easy is it to do this?
The newborn insert and side cushions are removed with poppers so you can easily detach them as your baby needs more space. The seat headrest also has five different height positions so it offers maximum protection and security as your child grows.
How comfortable is it for your child?
She looks really comfortable. The seat is extremely soft and well padded – John Lewis and Silver Cross parents, as well as 75% of parents we surveyed, all rated the seat highly for comfort. It’s also made from super soft bamboo fabric, which is more breathable than cotton. The bamboo fabric has thermo-regulating properties to take moisture away from the skin, keeping your child warm yet dry. Bamboo fabric is also anti-bacterial and hypoallergenic, making it perfect for sensitive baby skin. The newborn inserts look particularly sturdy and I think a young baby would be very well supported and comfortable with them.
Does it comply with new i-Size regulations?
Yes, it is fully i-Size approved, meaning it follows the new European-wide car seat regulation, which aims to make car seats safer. The regulation is designed to keep children rear-facing for longer, provide better side impact protection and make car seats easier to fit correctly. Find out more about i-Size.
What do you think of the size and weight of the car seat?
The seat is very cumbersome. It was too heavy and bulky for me to pick up and take to the car so I enlisted my husband for help. Although it’s easy to install, it would be really difficult when swapping it between cars, however, 75% of parents we surveyed gave it a 9/10 or more for portability.
What do you think of the design?
The Motion has some really cool features for added convenience. I’m sure there’s not a parent out there who hasn’t been driven crazy by harness straps that don’t stay in place when you’re trying to sit your child down. For ease and sanity, the motion has two nifty reflective buckle hooks to keep the harness out of the way until you’re ready to strap up.
Is it easy to clean the Silver Cross Motion?
Luckily we’ve not had any accidents or messes just yet but the fabric looks like spot cleaning wouldn’t be a problem. The covers are also removable and can be machine washed at 30°. In our survey, 75% of parents also found it easy to clean.
What feature do you like most in the car seat?
I love the 360-degree rotation, every time I use it, it makes me feel like I’m auditioning for The Voice TV show! Besides the fun factor, it is really convenient and makes the start and end of the car journey much easier.
Is it a stylish product?
It’s very stylish and has a great finish. It features twin-needle stitching with diamond quilting which gives a feel of luxury and the black and grey colourway is sleek and looks great in our car. I particularly like the trendy hexagonal pattern on the side impact protection, which I personally think resembles a car tyre.
Is it good value?
It cost £350 which isn’t cheap in my book, but unlike some options the base is included within the price. Considering it has the potential to last up to four years, I would say it is good value for money, and this opinion was shared by John Lewis parents, who said it was either ‘great’ or ‘excellent’ value.
Where can I buy the Silver Cross Motion car seat?
You can buy it from Silver Cross, John Lewis and Affordable Baby.
What’s in the box?
Coming as one unit, you’ll find the baby seat and the base which includes the easy-lock ISOFIX system and integrated adjustable support leg.
How easy was the Silver Cross Motion to assemble?
The base and seat is one unit so there was no assembling required. The step by step guide on the app is clear and easy to follow. There are also handy instructions on the base of the car seat if you need reminding of how to do something.
Which type of family is this car seat best for?
It would suit a family that uses just one car and who wish to keep the car seat in it all the time, as switching takes too much effort.
Would you recommend this car seat?
In our survey, 75% of parents said they would buy it again. Personally, I would recommend this car seat to parents with a baby aged 6 months or older. I really don’t think it’s the best seat for a newborn baby.
The Silver Cross Motion car seat is a fantastic product designed with the safety of your child right at the forefront. It looks stylish, feels very well-made and is easy to install. For its quality, group stage and life span, it certainly justifies the £350 price tag. It’s not perfect though. It’s heavy and difficult to swap between cars and it’s not the right product for you if you want to transfer your baby from the car to your destination or to a buggy with minimal effort.
*MFM survey December 2019 of 564 users