publication date: Mar 18, 2009
author/source: Nicole Burroughs
Having struggled to get my baby daughter into and out of a rear-facing car seat in my three door VW Polo for the last nine months, I was very happy to trial the Britax Eclipse, a forward-facing car seat which is actually recommended for three door cars where there is limited fitting space.
On receiving the car seat we were relieved to find that it was light-weight and comfy looking and were keen to get it installed in the car as soon as possible. Unfortunately the instructions were not all that helpful. In fact the lay-out of the instruction booklet was a real hindrance; there are multiple languages in each section or chapter, so it’s difficult to read all of the instructions in one go – instead you find yourself flicking backwards and forwards constantly. The diagrams are also not as clear as they could be. However, my husband who eventually fitted the seat said it was quite instinctive, fitting simply and securely into the rear seat using the seat belt.
The Britax Eclipse is designed for babies from 9kg-18kg (approximately nine months to four years) and certainly looks more comfortable than the rear-facing seats designed for younger babies. Although my daughter is at the bottom end of the age/weight range, with the seat fully reclined she looks safe and secure. There are five recline positions in total and a well designed adjustable five point safety harness – with these features you can see how the seat will grow with the child.
From a safety perspective, there are deep, well padded side wings to provide the best side-impact protection and a unique pitch control system designed to reduce a child’s forward movement in the seat (according to the manufacturer’s blurb). It is difficult to really comment on these features as we hope never to put them to the test!
There is no question that the Britax Eclipse is much easier to get Eva into and out of than her previous seat and I have fewer bruises on my head and less back pain as a result. The main benefit for Eva is that she now sits in a more elevated position and can see out of the window which she loves, and for me, I can see her in the rear-view mirror and know that she is safe and happy.
Britax has a range of car seats to suit your child and car. The Britax Elclipse is available from Amazon. To order one or to see others in the range click the link below:
Britax Eclipse Car Seat (Ellen) (Group 1)