CYBEX was the first brand of infant car seat I used with my firstborn. I was blown away by their innovation to create a seat that reclined to an almost lie-flat position for safer naps when not in the vehicle. Years later, I’m no less impressed with their latest invention: a 360° rotatable seat!
That’s right—whether rear-facing or forward-facing, the CYBEX Sirona S offers a swivel feature that makes loading and unloading your little one so much easier than the standard method. Read on for more details, so you can decide if it’s a winning pick for your family.
Admittedly, setting up a car seat always makes me nervous. It’s only carrying my most precious cargo, right?
Installing the seat went pretty smoothly, but there were a few moments of frustration. The manual is very thorough, which is obviously necessary, but reading it may make your head spin. I eventually opted to follow their online tutorials on YouTube for some visual reassurance that I was getting it right.
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My daughter is still in rear-facing mode. After installing it once with the LATCH system using the lower anchors in our vehicle, I felt it wasn’t tight enough. I tried another time with the vehicle belt and got a more secure installation. (Depending on your vehicle and the spacing width of your seats, you may have to opt for one or the other to ensure the seat is super tight. The manual will help you determine this and gives measurements to reference.)
Once attached, the bubble level indicator helped me find the right recline position. Note that one side of the car seat has directions in English and the other side in Spanish; if installing on an out-bounding seat, it’s helpful to coordinate with the side that fits best for you, so you’re not going back and forth to the other side when reading the instructions.
Lastly, I got the Load Leg in place, which acts as an anti-rebound tool for preventing the car seat from reclining further in the event of a crash. This safety feature comes with Easylock indicators (green means locked, red means unlocked), and it can also be used in forward-facing mode without interfering with the ability to rotate the seat.
Obviously, the biggest appeal for this seat is the rotating base (and it’s worth all the hype—more on that below), but there are other great bells and whistles to mention. Here’s everything I love:
I was pleased to find out that this move can be done with one hand. It’s performed using the same lever for adjusting the recline, so you don’t have to memorize as many points of functionality (something that can get out of hand with baby gear). It’s very easy to maneuver once you get the hang of it. While CYBEX isn’t the only convertible car seat with a rotating base on the market (though they were the first!), their model comes coupled with SensorSafe Technology.
Newer CYBEX models come with this safety feature embedded in the chest clip of the harness. It monitors for safety hazards like dangerous temperatures, a lack of movement and whether or not a child has been left behind in a car. All notifications are sent directly to your smartphone. What’s more, SensorSafe can alert emergency contacts of a potential danger and even give the location of the vehicle.
I was so glad to see the CYBEX Sirona S SensorSafe Technology listed in the manual because it’s a game changing feature that will hopefully be a safety standard moving forward in baby gear innovation.
Linear Side-Impact Protection (LSP)
These side impact protectors pop-out from the sides of the car seat and can absorb up to 25 percent more force from a side collision, according to CYBEX. This diverts the force away from a child’s fragile neck and head area.
Magnetic Buckle Holders
These holders have kept my buckle straps tangle-free. Enough said.
Other great features to mention are a no-rethread harness for quick headrest height adjustments, an included cup holder and plush newborn inserts that are machine-washable.
What I Liked About this Car Seat
Not to sound like a broken record here, but I really love the rotating feature. My daughter is a little bit older now, and she fights getting in her car seat (and highchair, and crib, and anything else confining). This makes the struggle easier to control and less uncomfortable for her.
What’s really great is when I’m wearing my youngest in a carrier and have to put my daughter in her rotating seat for morning drop-off with her dad. As you can imagine, doing that was almost impossible—not to mention a little risky—with our previous infant seat. The benefit of the extra space really shines when there’s more than one child in the bucking equation.
I appreciate how sleek the Sirona S looks as well. I got the premium black fashion, but they have an assortment of other colors fit for minimal aesthetics, like urban black, Manhattan grey and indigo blue. They also offer a two-year warranty, which is pretty great considering the overall life span of a convertible car seat in some families.
Areas for Improvement
It would be great if this product could grow into a booster seat, but I’m only saying that because it’s a bit of an investment. Overall, my child seems comfortable, secure and happy in her new seat.
Who Would Enjoy this Product
I think this car seat would be great for a parent with a newborn or an older child (or both!). I can easily see how the rotating feature would have been wonderful with my daughter in the early months.
The one thing to note is this car seat is large, so a compact car owner would likely find it too tight of a fit for everyday use, thus eliminating the ease of the rotating feature. Other than that, I think it’s worthy of all registry wish lists!
CYBEX Sirona S Convertible Car Seat, $500