Time passed too quickly, and my little girl outgrew her newborn car seat. My husband and I were now faced with the daunting task of getting a convertible car seat because inevitably she would grow way too fast but need a car seat for many more years to come. There is such a variety of options on the market, but we lucked out with the Diono Pacifica. One of the best things about it is that it has a 12-year usable life when used as a booster seat! That is one of the longest ones in the industry right now, though the harness only has an eight-year span.
My husband and I put the Pacifica in our compact car with ease thanks to its unique super-strong SuperLATCH™ system with identifying red buttons. As I set my daughter in her new seat, she immediately seemed comfy and happy. The material is breathable and cushioned, making any baby in the middle of the summer a happy one.
We are a busy family and take several long car rides. Our little babe never became overheated in this seat and took several long naps without any problems. I was satisfied knowing that she was comfortable—and also that (with the reinforced side walls of the seat made of steel and aluminum material) the seat’s enhanced side impact protection would keep her safe. (The Pacifica is NCAP crash tested, which is the industry benchmark for verifying child seat performance in severe accident conditions.)
Another wonderful quality of this car seat is that with its versatile modes, it can comfortably seat rear-facing children from 5-50 pounds and forward facing children from 20-90 pounds in 5-point harness mode. Then it converts to a booster for children between 50-120 pounds or up to 57’’ in height. The recline base must be used when the seat is in rear-facing position. The harness has five different slots for a range of heights to cover most children’s needs. You can adjust the harness height from behind the seat by removing straps from the splitting plate and rethreading them into the desired slot. If your child is rear-facing, the slots need to be at or below the shoulders, while they need to be above for forward facing.
I found out that Pacifica is unique in that it allows you to have forward facing children with shoulders above the top shoulder harness slots, as long as they stay within the weight limit for forward-facing children and have the tops of their ears below the top of the car seat. Something else that’s great about the Pacifica is that it’s one of the only seats in the United States that can currently be tethered while rear-facing as well as while forward-facing. Talk about extra security!
Other features worth mentioning:
- Your newbie will be snug with infant body support cushions and memory foam.
- It comfortably sits three across in most mid-sized cars.
- Give your tot proper leg support with expandable sides and a long seat bottom.
- It’s easy for growing kiddos to seat themselves (and performs better in crash tests) because it sits low in the back seat of the car.
- The included cup holder is angled with the seat, so drinks, snacks and anything else is easily within reach.
- The seat cover is machine washable!
The car seat is stylish looking and easy to clean while maintaining a high comfort level one of your little one. I would definitely recommend this car seat.
I can happily say that I feel the Diono Pacifica is a perfect fit for our family and baby. I was not only impressed with all the safety features, but also that this car seat is a one-time purchase for a growing baby. I didn’t realize how desperately our daughter needed a new and better seat until it arrived. I wish would have gotten it first, but I am ecstatic that we have it now.
Weight limits: Rear-facing, 5-50 pounds; forward-facing, 20-90 pounds; booster, 50-120 pounds
Where to buy: amazon.com