Thursday, 24 April 2014

Maxi-Cosi Rodi AirProtect

I’d like to start with an explanation about why we decided to replace J’s carseat so quickly.

Basically, the Rodi XP that we had wasn’t brand new. I wasn’t too happy about that, but we weren’t in a position to afford brand new, I knew the history of the seat and knew it had been looked after correctly. Being carseat fitter trained, I knew that it fitted my car suitably. Even though it was over five years old it is not a unit with integral harness and coupled with the fact I knew the history I was satisfied it was safe enough. It still niggled that I couldn’t get a brand new seat for my precious boy to use but we decided we’d use the Rodi XP til we could afford a replacement. (And I was determined to get him a replacement, but he’d suddenly grown out of his Opal in a short space of time)

It turns out, that happened sooner than expected. On the way back from a lovely short break at the coast, J was travel sick. Fortunately we were just round the corner from home, so we were back and he was changed and cleaned up within ten minutes and I took the seat out of the car to strip the fabrics and put them in the wash. After I’d done that, I looked at the seat and realised that the polystyrene insert on the headrest was cracked through. Any damage like that to the polystyrene of a carseat means that in the event of an impact it may not absorb / distribute the force as it is designed to, and it may transfer the force of the impact to the child, therefore not providing the protection you would want to the occupant of the carseat.

When I made enquiries about getting a replacement section of polystyrene the offer came to me of a Rodi AirProtect. It was a no-brainer – why worry about getting a replacement part for a carseat that was so old when a brand new replacement seat was available?

The Maxi-Cosi Rodi AirProtect is a Group 2/3 High Backed Booster seat, suitable for children from 15-36kg. The AirProtect is fitted using the three point seatbelt in the vehicle around the child and seat. For additional anchorage there is a top tether point which is on the headrest on an elastic cord – you pull it out and between the vehicle seat and headrest then close the gap by replacing the headrest. This is an additional anchor point and is not required for use – if your car can’t accommodate it, you don’t have to use it. I like it for the fact it gives me more peace of mind when J isn’t in the car – it means even without the seatbelt around the empty carseat I know it won’t be moved a great deal in the event of an impact.

The AirProtect arrived in a single box, in two pieces. It took me about ten seconds to put it together – you just click the base of the seat onto the back section and fold it from a flat position into a seat position. Once it’s locked in place, it won’t come off again – you can be confident that when you carry the seat out to the car, or move it from car to car, the base section won’t drop off again.

The AirProtect has two cushions either side of the head section for maximum protection in a side impact accident. Additional to this it is well padded all round and looks a lot more comfortable.  It offers an upright and a recline position (the XP only has upright position)

The colour we have is Modern Black – this is a black on black leopard print pattern which is more interesting than a plain seat but less fussy than a full on colour pattern. I really like it and it would be suitable for a girl or a boy. Bearing in mind this carseat is used until the child no longer requires a carseat, I think it’s important to get a fabric style that isn’t tied to a specific age group as what they’re into at four will be very different to their interests at age 11!

J hasn’t had a particularly long journey using this model carseat but he has told me that it is very comfy and he enjoys travelling in it – I’m thoroughly impressed with the quality of the product, as well as the independent crash test results (Which? Awarded it four out of five stars – only an IsoFix fitted product can get five stars)

It’s a lovely top end unit providing optimum safety, comfort and style, and I have no hesitation recommending this product to anyone seeking a seatbelt fitted Group 2/3 carseat. * Remember, Maxi-Cosi recommend that a carseat fitter trained person provides a physical fitting of any carseat prior to purchase to confirm suitability in your vehicle *

*** UPDATE ***


J continues to be very comfortable in his Maxi-Cosi RodiAP and has been dropping off to sleep a lot more often since travelling in this seat vs travelling in the RodiXP. I don’t know if this is co-incidence or if the seat is more comfortable – it certainly seems more thickly padded. With recline option as well he can get really comfy – I tend to recline it before he gets in and we set off on any journey that is going to take more than an hour. He’s not been carsick again since swapping to this model either.

At four years and 2 months old he is approximately 107cm. I haven’t weighed him in a while so I don’t know how much he’s put on recently but he remains a very slender build. 

*** These views are entirely my own. I am not paid to write this material and do so in my own time ***