A few weeks ago we moved Amelia from her "toddler car seat" which she was in since her 1st birthday to a "big girl" booster seat. I was aprehensive about her wearing just a seat belt, rather than a 5 point harness, and worried that she would open it while on the move, but its been great. She loves that she is the same as Mummy and Daddy and I think we probably should have moved her sooner, she looks far more comfortable now. We chose the Joie Trillo 2/3 Ix Car Seat in Inkwell is designed for children from four to 12 years old, or 15kg to 36kg. It's installed using the seat belt, and Isofix connectors help keep the seat in place when it's not in use. The LX features 'head-to-hips side-impact protection' plus air pockets for 'extra protection'.Joie is a UK company that makes car seats, travel system, pushchairs, high chairs and travel cots. The company, a “group of friends and parents” claims to make products that are, “better, safer and sronger". We have previously worked with Joie, and have two of their car seats in our second car and cannot fault them. The Joie Stages Group 0+ 1-2 Car Seat (suitable from 0 – 7 years) and the Joie Spin 360 Car Seat –( Birth to 4 Years)
This Group 2/3 car seat comprises of a booster seat fixed onto an adjustable backrest. The booster can be used on its own but the high back backrest with side wings and head support gives protection against side impacts.Fitting this seat is so easy. The booster and the backrest come separately in the box. To assemble the seat simply fit the feet at the bottom of the backrest into the holes to the rear of the seat.Fitting the two pieces together does require that you have the back rest flat on the ground so that the feet fit secure into the holes – there are ridges that hold it firmly in position.Once together the red, colour-coded installation paths on the shoulder and under the arm rests make securing your little one with the three-point seatbelt pretty foolproof.
Adjusting the height of the seat really can be done with one hand – just squeeze the button at the back of the seat and pull up.
The backrest has seven positions, which is impressive as not many booster seats offer this. The side impact protection provides added security for the head, body and hips and the Guard Around Safety™ panels add extra layers of side protection
When the backrest in its highest position the seat is 83cm from the base of the booster seat, which means that it is defitnetly suitable to up to age 12 as reccomended.
There is a lot of padding on the backrest on the wings and arm rests,its memory foam cushion which means that they still have the comfort of a car seat like they were used to for those odd days they might fall asleep on a car journey. The covers are breathable and machine washable (a huge selling point).
The biggest "big deal" of this car seat is the fold out cup/snack holders, a novelty and a handy addition, drinks and snacks nearby and not on the floor, or having to stop to get out of the car and pick said drink/snacks off the floor.
The Trillo is ECE R44/04 approved (current EU car seat standard) and Joie takes safety testing very serious and has its own government certified crash test facility.The company also states that each product is put through extreme testing, for car seats this is a 50kmph crash test.
In addition to the side impact that is in the shell of the Trillo there are additional side impact wings that can be fitted to the seat. This is obviously a huge plus but does add around 8cm width to the chair, so if you’ve got three in the back it might not work for you. These were a bit hard to click in, but a bit of jiggling around and we did it.
The fixings at the rear of the seat were easy to slot into the isofix. A little force was required to secure, but once in, its safe in place. And having ISO fixings gives the Trillo an edge over similar car seats who do not have this feature.
At £79/ €96 I think its a great price for a chair that will see us through to her teenage years (it just killed me writing that….its not something I want to think about anytime soon).
T, A & H xxxxxx
* We were kindly gifted the Joie Trillo Car Seat for the purpose of this review.