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  1. #1
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    Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    Our primary car is a BMW i3 -- great little car, but the suicide doors and small-ish back seat make child seats a bit more complicated. We got by fine with just one child, but now that we have two, I need a little guidance! Our 4.5yo daughter is 41" and 36lbs. She's currently forward-facing in a Britax Advocate ClickTight seat, which she also used rear-facing in the car (but getting her in/out was easiest when getting in the other back seat and taking her out the opposite side she sat on). Our 1yo daughter is ready to transition out of her Mesa and into a RF convertible.

    I did a bunch of research the first time around on what seats has short front-to-back lengths to fit in the i3, and the Britax was the winner. Last weekend, I took a trip to buybuybaby to look at some other options (Chicco NextFit, Cybex Sirona, Baby Jogger City View), and basically found the Britax was still the best option. So, I'm leaning towards another Advocate for her to use RF. (Side question: is the Nanotex option worth it, if I went for the Boulevard instead?)

    The challenge, as I mentioned earlier, is due to the door design of the i3 and the high head shell of the Britax, getting her in and out on the side the seat is installed is very difficult, and requires some manuevering of the child to get her body/head in the car and then into the seat. I'd prefer to slide myself in to the other rear seat and then put my daughter in her seat from there. With a FF Advocate on the other side, that becomes difficult. So, I was intrigued by the idea of moving my 4.5yo into a harness booster, which might afford a little more space to make it easier getting the 1yo in and out. It seems like the Britax Frontier ClickTight is a great option that they will be able to use for a long time (given the high weight limits, conversion options, and long expiration). However, I hesitate a little based on the recent Consumer Reports testing. I know that their tests are using a dummy near the upper limit of the harness, at which point they probably should be using the regular belt, but it still is a concern that the seat might not be as effective in a crash.

    Any other seats I'm missing that would be either good RF options for small cars or FF harness boosters? We did buy an IMMI GO last year to use for travel, and we do use it in our other car locally, but my daughter doesn't sleep as well in that (and it doesn't seem to have as much padding/structure as the Britax). Thanks for your suggestions!

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  3. #2
    Moderator - CPS Technician
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    The Frontier is a great seat and while I personally would hesitate to use it for a big kid who is booster-ready (after the CR testing), it seems like your daughter is on the small side and it will be a loooong time before she's at a weight where I would worry.

    That being said, since she is small, there are lots of other seats that would work too. My understanding is that CR tested other seats and will at some point put out a full report on which they tested and how they did. So perhaps you want to wait until you see those results. (Although I'm not sure if the report will include test results specifically or just a composite score based on the overall seat, factoring in things like price and features.)

    If you want other options besides Britax, the Chicco MyFit looks like a nice seat and one I would check out if I were in the market.
    Cutie #1 (11 years) 5-stepping
    Cutie #2 (9 years) riding in a Recaro Probooster

    Cutie #3 (6 years) riding in a Chicco KidFit
    Cutie #4 (4 years) riding in a Frontier
    Cutie #5 (1 year) riding in a Nuna Rava

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  5. #3
    Registered User
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    Thanks, I'll take a look at the MyFit.

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  7. #4
    CPS Fanatic
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    It sounds like one of your priorities for the forward facing seat is your ability to sit in it for a minute, right? Or possibly a low profile compact rear facing seat, so you can get your younger child in without crawling into the back seat yourself?

    I’m tempted to suggest a Radian R100 or R120. (They’re the same shape.) It’s very compact front to back rear facing with the $10 Angle Adjuster, and it’s very low profile, so you might be able to load and buckle the toddler standing outside the vehicle. If it doesn’t work rear facing, you can sit in it forward facing pretty easily.

    Alternatively, can you buckle the rear facer through the trunk/tailgate, and make this whole problem easier?

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  9. #5
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    I would be concerned about legroom with the frontier in your car. It’s much deeper in the seat than the advocate clicktight and therefore your daughter’s legs might be forced to stick straight out into the seat in front of her. The frontier is truly enormous.

    I might consider a marathon over the boulevard or advocate for your younger child as the head wings are shallower on the marathon. That will at least give you a bit more headroom to manuever her into the seat.

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  11. #6
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    Quote Originally Posted by lgenne View Post
    It sounds like one of your priorities for the forward facing seat is your ability to sit in it for a minute, right? Or possibly a low profile compact rear facing seat, so you can get your younger child in without crawling into the back seat yourself?

    I’m tempted to suggest a Radian R100 or R120. (They’re the same shape.) It’s very compact front to back rear facing with the $10 Angle Adjuster, and it’s very low profile, so you might be able to load and buckle the toddler standing outside the vehicle. If it doesn’t work rear facing, you can sit in it forward facing pretty easily.

    Alternatively, can you buckle the rear facer through the trunk/tailgate, and make this whole problem easier?
    I've found the Diono seats are not good fits rear-facing in the i3; they are too tall. Front-facing may work, and I looked at that as an option, but compared to the Britax it didn't seem to be as easy to use (or last as long), and the lack of a no-rethread harness was another con (though realistically maybe it's not a huge deal as you're not adjusting it that often). I hadn't thought about going in through the rear hatch -- will take a look, but that might be more complicated than helpful.

    Quote Originally Posted by abigaylebelle View Post
    I would be concerned about legroom with the frontier in your car. It’s much deeper in the seat than the advocate clicktight and therefore your daughter’s legs might be forced to stick straight out into the seat in front of her. The frontier is truly enormous.

    I might consider a marathon over the boulevard or advocate for your younger child as the head wings are shallower on the marathon. That will at least give you a bit more headroom to manuever her into the seat.
    Thanks for the tip on legroom! I actually decided to order a MyFit after reading about it. We'll see how it works out!

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  13. #7
    CPSDarren - Admin SafeDad's Avatar
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    Re: Frontier or not? Recommendations for FF and RF in a BMW i3

    The MyFit is a nice choice! If it doesn't work out for you for any reason, you could also try the Graco Nautilus Snuglock LX next- we have a review here- https://carseatblog.com/46060/

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