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Cheap car seats go head to head in Which? test

Latest car seat test uncovers two Don't Buy models

Child-car-seatsKeep your child as safe as possible when travelling in a car by using the correct car seat

We’ve crash tested a range of car seats costing less than £100 to answer the question: can you get a good child car seat for less than £100?

If you’ve splashed out hundreds of pounds for the latest fashionable pushchair, it’s tempting to try and save some money when it comes to the child car seat – but can you put a price on the cost of protecting your little one in the event of a car accident?

We set out to find the answer by testing 10 child car seats priced £27 to £80 – go straight to our child car seat reviews to discover the full test results.

Cheap car seats test

Our group test of sub-£100 child car seats included widely available Group 0 and 0+ infant carriers, as well as multi-group 1/2/3 seats which claim to last from around 12 months right up to 12 years of age – the age UK law requires a child to be in the correct restraint.

We uncovered two cheap car seats that scored so poorly we’ve rated them Don’t Buys. A handful of the seats achieved average results – but one car seat notched up a solid test score of 70% and a good overall safety rating of four stars.

Safety-Paris-Front-2The Which? car seat reviews use data from realistic crash situations

Why Which? car seat reviews are different

Our reviews are written from actual crash test data, using a crash test dummy put through realistic crash situations. Only the best models earn our Best Buy car seat recommendation.

Which? tests are conducted by experts with years of extensive experience. And because Which? is independent, we don’t accept advertising or freebies, so you can have confidence that our reviews present an honest and impartial view of the products we test.

Which.co.uk is the only child car seat review website that actually tests child car seats in two crash simulations: a front crash, equivalent to a head-on collision at around 40mph, and a side crash at around 17mph.

Both tests go further than the legal standard, as they are conducted at higher speeds and forces than the current R44.04 regulations require.

Sometimes the crash tests reveal big differences between child car seats currently on sale in the UK. Some protect babies and children well, but others expose them to the risk of serious injury or even death.

Watch our video showing how we test car seats to understand the difference for yourself.

Car seat reviews

The full list of car seats just tested is below – click the links to read full reviews of each model.

Babystart Multi-Recline, £35
Fisher Price Safe Voyage Grow With Me, £69
Kiddicare Go, £60
Mothercare Malmo, £50
Mothercare Ziba, £60
My Child Star Max, £63
Nania BeOne SP Luxe, £45
Nania Racer SP, £40
Nania Starter SP, £27
OBaby Tiny Tatty Teddy, £80

Prices correct as of 28 October 2014.

More on this…

  • Read full child car seat reviews
  • Find the best model using our child car seat comparison tool
  • Keep you child safer for longer with an extended rear-facing car seat
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