RECARO are well known for their car seats and have been in the seating industry for over 100 years. With all of their seats designed, engineered and made in Germany, their focus is on child safety. We're taking the Privia infant carrier for a spin to see how it works.
With their first child car seat released in 1998, RECARO have continued to release innovative new ideas to the market. There's eight different seats to the brand, that cover the full age range of a child's safety. The Privia infant carrier covers the first stage and is perfect to use from birth up to 13kg. With several safety ratings to it's name find out how it stacks up in our RECARO Privia Review.
What's in the box?
• RECARO Privia car seat
• Instruction manual
The RRP of the RECARO Privia is £135
RECARO Fix Base £100
• Car seat group: Group 0+
• Child weight: 0-13kg
• Child's age: 0-15 months approx.
• Weight: 3.7kg
• Replacement Cover £35
• Mosquito Net £17
• Raincover £17
• Car Seat Protector £17.90
• Summer Cover £35
ColoursThe RECARO Privia comes in an array of different colours to suit anyone's tastes.
Black, Graphite, Shadow, Ruby, Pink, Saphir, Mocca, Violet.
The RECARO Privia can be fitted with either the car's own 3-point seat belt or with the RECARO Fix Base. Both options are simple to do and keep the car seat fitted securely. It's good that you can still use the car seat, whether you have ISOFIX points in your car or not.
To fit the Privia with the car's seat belt, there are three blue belt guides so that you know where to feed it through. The lap belt passes over the top of the infant carrier and fits under the two guides so that you can plug it in. Next, the shoulder part of the belt needs to extend out around the back of the seat under the blue lever. This blue lever needs pulling up so that you can tuck the seat belt under it - make sure that it drops back down to the cover the belt. Depending on the length of your seat belt, you may need to tilt the Privia slightly while you pull the seat belt over the top. Once the seat belt is under all of the guides, it just needs checking that it hasn't become twisted and then tightened.
The RECARO Fix Base makes fitting and removing the car seat from the car very quick. Fitting the base is something that you shouldn't have to do very often, and once it's in, you can rely on it to stay fixed in place. We really like the four indicators at the front of the base, which are highlighted either green or red to show if the different stages are fitted correctly. Removing the margin for error, it offers the parent complete confidence that their little one is travelling in the car in the most safest way.
To fit the base, you first need to extend the ISOFIX arms by squeezing the grey button that is placed to the top and front of the base. RECARO provide insertion aids to make finding your ISOFIX anchor points easier and these just push into place. Once the arms are fully extended, you can push them towards your ISOFIX anchors until they click into place. To get a secure fit, pull the same button again and push the base so that it sits flush up against the back of the car's seat. The first two outer indicators will change from red to green.
Next job is the support leg. It can be extended to the correct height by pushing the button at the front of the lower part of the leg. Once this touches the floor firmly, the third light will turn green.
With the base fitted securely, the Privia can be placed on top. As with all infant carriers, it can only be fitted rearfacing and the handle should be upright while travelling. As it locks in securely, you can hear a click and the last indicator will turn green. To remove the car seat again from the base, just pull up the blue lever on the back of the seat and lift with the carry handle. We love how easy this is to do, pulling up with the lever and handle at the same time in one fluid movement.
Though an additional purchase of £100, the Fix Base does make life easier and is a must if you regularly remove your car seat from the car.
Not only is the Privia tested and approved to the current Child Safety Standard ECE R 44/04, but RECARO go the extra mile and were announced as a test winner by Stiftung Warentest (Issue 6/2014, Group 0/0+) in combination with the RECARO Fix Base. They received a rating of 1.3, which is Very Good - this is the best test result that a child safety seat has ever received from the institution.
RECARO launched their innovative HERO Safety System with the Privia. With HERO, the shoulder supports, shoulder belts and headrest are a single unit, creating the highest possible levels of safety and comfort for baby. With Advanced Side Protection, the child is supported even more from a side impact collision.
There is also a removable support cushion to create the best position for newborns.
The RECARO Privia is one of the lightest infant carriers currently available on the market at only 3.7kg. With a baby in place, the slightest bit of weight can make all the difference to carrying the car seat. As the ergonomic handle is nicely rounded at the top, it is comfortable to carry. It can be adjusted to one of three positions using the buttons at each side - the furthest back position holding the curved base stable. Because of this curved base it can be used on the floor to rock your baby.
The dotted black outer material is luxuriously soft, unusually so on an infant carrier. The vibrant coloured centre is just as velvety and available in eight different colours. From Pink to Blue, they've got the spectrum covered. The cover is completely removable and can be washed on a delicate 30° wash.
Included with the Privia is an additional seat support that makes the car seat smaller for newborns. It is removable and RECARO advise that it is taken out once your little one needs the harness moving up for the first time.
Harness adjustment can sometimes be tricky, but it couldn't be easier on the Privia. By reaching to the back of the seat, you can squeeze the grey button and move up or down. As the harness is part of the HERO Safety System, the head support, shoulder pads and harness all move with it together. The harness itself is 3-point, so easy to fit together over the child and push into the buckle with a loud click. To extend the harness length, there is a button hidden just underneath the seats material, and to shorten again, you just need to pull the excess of strap at the bottom.
For better protection from the sun, the canopy is made from a thick 50+ UPF material that pulls up to the handle bar. When not in use it can be pushed fully back, and even removed if you don't need to use it. We did find that the rods slipped out of their connectors quite easily, so could be pulled out as you extended the hood. The material does also sag slightly, as there is nothing to keep the heavy rim connected to the handle.
As the RECARO Privia can be used with the same adaptors as Maxi-Cosi, you can add it to pretty much any pushchair out there to create your own travel system.
The RECARO Privia is a stylish looking infant carrier that has high safety factors featured as a priority. As well as safety, RECARO have definitely thought about the day-to-day use too.
The fabrics used are top quality and really soft against a little one's skin. The padding in the sides not only offers greater comfort for the baby, but a higher level of protection from any side collisions. A slight downside was the sagging of the hood material and the fact that the rods could be pulled out easily, but this is just an aesthetic issue.
We love the all in one HERO system, not only for the safety importance, but because it makes it easier to adjust everything together for a perfect fit. It also prevents the shoulder pads and harness from getting twisted.
The Fix Base couldn't be simpler to use, and makes everything quicker and easier to fit and operate. With the four indicators at the front of the seat, you know that everything is fitted perfectly.
Whichever way you use the RECARO Privia, your little one will be kept comfortable and most importantly, the safest that they could be. It offers faultless convenience and functionality.
We give the RECARO Privia 5 out of 5 stars
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