Budget Car Seat for tall 2 year old and small car?


New member
Argh! I've been researching seats for months (with great help from people on here!), had finally settled on the Cosco Scenera 40RF, only to find it's been discontinued when I went to buy it.

DS just turned 2 and currently sits in a Combi Coccoro RFing in my Jeep Wrangler. He's 35.5" tall as of his appt a week ago, and his sister (due next month) will be taking his CC (only rated to 36" RF anyway), so we need to get him a new seat. I LOVE the CC and it seems to be the only seat we found that fits really comfortably in my Jeep, but it's only rated to 40" FFing so even if we turn him around/get a 2nd one it won't last long enough. If I can find something rated taller to keep him RFing, I'd love to, but budget is VERY tight and it looks like almost everything we've looked at is only rated to 36" RFing. We have a Radian in DH's car and it doesn't fit RFing in my Jeep. Any alternatives to Scenera that are hopefully <$100 and small? Their new Apt is way too wide.

I was looking at the Guide 65 - specs say seat isn't that wide, but it looks huge in pictures, especially in terms of seat size back to front, and many of the seats we've tried to put in my car, while they technically fit, are so bulky on the sides that I can't actually get to him to get him in and out if he's RFing...

ETA: Sorry, should mention he's a skinny marink - 26 lbs. So I'm not worried about weight limits, just height.


Active member
Most stated height limits on car seats are fairly arbitrary as children with different body types and shapes will fit into seats very differently despite being the same 'height'. Try him out in different seats, the amount of space between the top of his head and the shell of the seat is what matters and as long as there is one or more inches the seat is not outgrown.


CPST Instructor
The Safety 1st Guide 65 is a great budget seat - $80 at Wal Mart, RF to 40" or 40lbs AND it has nice tall top harness slots so most kids can use it FF til around 4-5 in addition to the nice RF allowances and it's on the narrower side.


CPST Instructor
I think the Guide 65 would be a great seat for you. It has a 40" overall height limit for rear facing. It's best to follow the manufacturer's recommendations, Dorel is adamant that this be followed. 4 inches can take awhile to put on so I think you will be fine. I don't think the Guide 65 is particularly wide, I would say it's in the middle. It won't be as narrow as the Coccoro you're used to though.


I know you say you already have a radian but it doesn't fit in your car rear facing - have you tried using an angle adjuster?

soph's mom

New member
I you have a Kmart near you they still carry them. I looked all over but couldn't find one but went in there and they had over 40... Recently too... I don't know if they show online but check in store.


CPST Instructor
I you have a Kmart near you they still carry them. I looked all over but couldn't find one but went in there and they had over 40... Recently too... I don't know if they show online but check in store.
It's been a couple months since I was there, but last I checked Sears in my area (Colorado) carries them too. BRU has it under the Eddie Bauer line, but it's like $120 to get the EB stamp. :rolleyes:


New member
Thanks for the Guide 65 recs! We ended up getting one online for a good deal, and it's a VERY tight RFing, but it does fit with the seat pushed up! Does anyone know if it's allowed to touch the seat in front the way the Radian is? DH would fit better in the front seat if it is...

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