The Maxi-Cosi Priori is contradictory to everything I thought I knew about convertible car seats.
As a father to a 5 year old and an 18 month old, I have purchased my fair share of seats and would estimate that I have thoroughly examined (installed, adjusted and fastened in a child) at least a dozen different models. My experience has led me to believe that “convertible” car seats are virtually useless for newborns as a rear-facing seat and too small to be used for long as a front-facing seat. As a result, I have always purchased infant seats for my children as newborns and front-facing seats after they’d grown out of the pumpkin seat. Not anymore, however: The Priori has won me over.
This seat can truly be used as a rear-facing seat for a newborn or as a forward-facing seat for the toddler camp. (Maxi-Cosi specifies it can be used rear-facing from 5 to 35 pounds and forward-facing from 22 to 40 pounds.) I have never been able to get a convertible seat to sit level in my car in rear-facing mode, and the seats I have tried are often too bulky when facing forward. The Maxi-Cosi seat addresses both of these issues. It has a unique leveler on the bottom that flips to keep the seat level regardless of the direction the seat faces. It is also compact enough to fit comfortably behind a driver seat adjusted to accommodate a 6-foot-plus driver. The seat is cozy enough for a newborn in rear-facing mode, and roomy enough to accommodate an 18 month old at the top of the growth charts. I’m not sure how the folks at Maxi-Cosi did it, but I am impressed.
The seat includes additional features such as a push button LATCH system, which provides easy to use clips for securing the seat to the latches provided in most new cars, as well as safety belt clips to secure the seat with a 3-point seatbelt if need be. The Priori offers Side Impact Protection and four independent recline positions. It also comes in a handful of color schemes, though I chose sleek black and grey to match my car. For the super fancy, Maxi-Cosi also makes booster style seats in the same color schemes so one can coordinate. They look fantastic.
I would whole-heartedly recommend this seat to anyone looking to purchase one car seat for the first few years of a child’s life. This seat will comfortably and safely carry a newborn or a toddler. The price is middle of the road and the product is top of the line. The Priori seat has certainly converted this convertible skeptic.
To buy: elitecarseats.com