A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I need to buy new car seats after our recent accident, and asked for info on the Britax Regent. I want to thank everyone who shared info, experiences, and recommendations – it was so helpful and the perfect example of why I enjoy and appreciate this blog so much.
The Radian (pictured) is similar to the Regent, in that it sits low and has a high weight limit of 65 or 85 pounds, depending on which model you choose. I got the Radian65 since my kids are average in height and weight, and I expect our 3.5-year-old will be able to use this seat for years.
The main reason I decided on the Radian over the Regent was size. The Regent is huge – I believe Melissa called it a “beast” because it’s so wide. With the Radian, we should be able to fit someone in the middle – we may even be able to get a car seat in the middle, which would be nice, although I don’t know if the boys will be able to tolerate being so close to each other in the back seat.
The other reason I was sold on the Radian is that it can go on an airplane – the Regent definitely can’t do that. Shelly says the Radian is heavy but still quite portable, so that’s reassuring.
Of course, there are always drawbacks. The biggest reason I hesitated and waffled for over a week in making my decision was that I read in a few places that the Radian can be difficult to install, particularly with a seat belt (as opposed to LATCH). Apparently the bottom of the Radian is quite flat, such that the seat does not always rest in proper position on the back seat. I could only find one reference to a successful forward-facing installation in a Nissan Altima (of which we have two), but Shelly’s report that it installs easily in her Honda Accord was enough to make me decide to give it a shot.
I did insure my decision as best I could. I found a new-to-me site, EliteCarSeats.com, which has the Radian at just 99 cents more than Amazon, and $1 Return Shipping Insurance. The shipping insurance means that I paid a non-refundable dollar in my order, but I won’t have to pay for shipping if I need to return the seats. They also offer free shipping, and my seats should arrive by the end of the week. I’ll let you know how installation goes.