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Road-Tested: 6 of the Best (and Safest!) Baby Car Seats in Australia in 2024

6 Of The Best Baby Car Seats In Australia In 2023

A baby car seat is one of the most essential purchases you'll make for a new baby. Like with a pram or cot, there are safety standards attached to purchasing a car seat for infants, and it's important that you do your research, read reviews, and compare baby car seats before making your choice.

Also like with baby cots and prams, there are many infant car seats to choose from on the market. It can all seem a little overwhelming when it comes time to make a decision.

One Fine Baby CEO, Nadean Richards, shares her advice when choosing the right car seat for an infant; "Being one of the most important purchases you'll make for your brand new baby, choosing the right car seat is key, I mean, you're not allowed to leave the hospital without having one properly fitted! I found when choosing my car seat for my children, it was best to read reviews, check the safety standards, and choose an option that would grow with my child. I would always recommend getting your infant car seat professionally installed, and regularly checking the height markers to see if you need to make any alterations to your car seat."

Australian child car seats: the law

To travel in your car, your child needs either a rear-facing child car seat, forward-facing child car seat, booster seat or adult seatbelt.

The child car seat must:

  • be appropriate for your child’s size
  • be correctly installed in your car
  • be properly fastened and adjusted to fit your child
  • meet Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 1754.


The minimum legal requirements for using child car seats in Australia are based on age:

  • Children under six months must use a rear-facing car seat for infants with an inbuilt harness.
  • Children aged six months up to four years must use a rear-facing or forward-facing child car seat with an inbuilt harness.
  • Children aged four years up to seven years must use a forward-facing child car seat with an inbuilt harness or a booster seat with an adult lap-sash seatbelt or child safety harness.
  • Children aged seven years and older must use a booster seat with an adult lap-sash seatbelt or child safety harness, or a standard seat with an adult seatbelt.


It’s always safest to keep your child in the car seat that’s most appropriate for your child’s size, regardless of age. Therefore, the law also allows for the following:

  • Children who are too small for the car seat that’s specified for their age group can stay in their current seat until they grow into the seat for the next age group.
  • Children who are too big for the child car seat that’s specified for their age can move to the seat specified for the next age group.


The shoulder height markers on baby car seats show when your child is big enough to start using a particular car seat, when you can convert the seat to the next use, and when your child is too big for the seat. If you want advice about moving your child into a different car seat, it’s a good idea to ask your child and family health nurse or another professional.

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When it comes to choosing a car seat for your newborn baby, there are several things to take into consideration. The first and most important is safety and stability of the car seat. You also need to make sure the seat is compatible with your car. Another thing to consider is the age range in which the baby car seat caters to.


- Safety

Safety is the most important functionality of a car seat, and should be considered long before look and feel. It is also imperative that the car seat chosen complies with Australian/New Zealand Standards AS/NZS 1754. Be sure to check the safety rating of your car seat before purchasing. It's also imperative that you ensure your baby car seat is brand new, so that you can attest to the structural integrity of the car seat being in tact. It can't always certain that a second-hand car seat has not been involved in a previous car accident, and this could be detrimental to the integrity of the car seat's structure if it was to be involved in another accident.


It's also integral that you read the car seat's manual and adhere to the shoulder strap height restrictions, altering them as your child grows.

- Comfort

When looking for a baby car seat, comfort should be taken into consideration. You should try and choose a car seat made from breathable fabric and with sufficient padding. Most baby car seats come with a removable cushion liner to both make the seat fit a smaller child, and provide an extra later of cushioning around the legs and back. It's also worth checking if the baby car seat head rests are sufficiently cushioned in case your child falls asleep, and in the case of an accident.

- Isofix capability

Most new cars come with Isofix capability, meaning that a car seat can simply be plugged in to the Isofix fixture. When choosing a car seat, it's important to discover what kind of fixtures are needed to secure your car seat, and whether your car is compatible. Isofix technology works in place of conventional seatbelt strapping to keep your car seat in place.

Baby car seat features to consider:

- Harness padding

Often straps on car seat for infants are pulled very tight to ensure your baby isn't at risk during the car ride. For this reason, strap cushioning is important to ensure the harness straps don't dig in to baby's chest.

- Seat protector

Some seat protectors come with non-slip materials to ensure that the baby car seat stays securely in place. This prevents unwanted movement during the journey. A seat protector simplifies the cleanup process. It's generally easier to remove and clean a seat protector than to address spills or stains directly in the baby car seat.

- Professional installation

Professional installation of a baby car seat is not essential, but strongly recommended, as they can ensure that the car seat for your infant is fitted correctly, and less likely to be damaged in a car accident. They can also provide a demonstration of how to place your newborn baby in and out of the car safely. 

1. Britax Safe-n-Sound Millenia™, RRP: $499.00

Britax Safe N Sound Millenia

What makes the Britax Safe-n-Sound Millenia™ car seat different?

Britax® Safe-n-Sound®’s Millenia™ offers advanced safety features. Designed with dual layer revolutionary Side Impact Cushion Technology™ (SICT™) providing your child the ultimate side impact protection. Thermo5® high performance fabric with Bamboo Charcoal means your child will travel in quality and comfort.

REAR FACING FOR LONGER

Your child can remain rearward facing until they are approximately 2-3 years old, which is safer for your child.

SIDE IMPACT CUSHION TECHNOLOGY™ (SICT™) - HEAD PROTECTION

Dual layer head protection minimises the energy generated in a side impact crash.The inner SICT™ layer provides 180° protection around your child’s head, whilst the outer SICT™ layer on the seat exterior absorbs immediate crash energy.

ISOFIX COMPATIBLE

ISOFLEX™ connectors allow for installation to vehicles with ISOFIX low anchorages. ISOFIX use ensures an easier installation, correct fit and a safer journey every time.

Why try the Britax Safe-n-Sound Millenia™ baby car seat?

AIRCRAFT COMPATIBLE

Suitable for forward facing use.

ACTIVE HEAD RESTRAINT™ (AHR™)

Designed specifically with deeper side wings that shield and contain your child’s head in a side impact crash. AHR™ grows with your child working with SICT™ to contain your child’s head and to minimise impact forces.

THERMO5® HIGH PERFORMANCE FABRIC

Thermo5® High Performance fabric with Bamboo Charcoal delivers the premium comfort your child deserves.

HASSLE FREE HARNESS™

Single handed height adjustable headrest and harness allows the seat to grow with your child, reducing the risk of incorrect installation and enhancing correct harness fit.

FLEXI INFANT SAFETY CUSHION™

This cushion includes EVA composite material that provides support and protection for a small baby absorbing energy during a side impact crash.

EZ-BUCKLE™

Retains the harness buckle in a forward position and prevents the child from sitting on the buckle when boarding.

Real review:

""We purchased this car seat for our first baby and so far so great! It meets all the australian standards in safety, we use it since he was born so little, the pads on it make it fit perfectly, we removed them as he was growing and there are red lines on the back that tells you when to stretch the back to fit the seat belt perfectly, so comfy and has pockets for a drink bottle and snacks, we love Britax!"" - MariaM, productreview.com.au

2. Safety 1st Summit ISO 30 Convertible Car Seat, RRP: $379.00

Safety 1st Summit Iso 30 Convertible Car Seat

The best selling Safety 1st Summit ISO 30 Convertible Car Seat can now support rearward facing up to 30 months. The summit ISO 30 boasts all the same features as the original Summit range, packed with innovation for safety and ease of use.

  • Extended Rearward facing to approximately 30 months (ERF).

  • ISOGO™ ISOFIX compatible soft latch system for simple and secure car installation.

  • Air Protect Superior Side Impact Protection.

  • Removable infant insert and harness pads featuring Natural Antibacterial Protection ®

  • Easy one handed, 3 position recline for child's comfort.

  • Inbuilt rebound bar design.

  • FREE Accident Exchange service.

  • 5 position headrest, with automatic harness slot change for easy in-car height adjustment.

  • Multi-functional utility straps.

Who is the Safety 1st Summit ISO 30 Convertible Car Seat perfect for?

Those with a smaller car looking for maximum safety and comfort when choosing the best car seat for infants and children.

Real customer reviews:

"We got this seat after having used a capsule for her the 7 months. There is an infant insert inside which we have removed & it has made it way more comfortable for her. She would have been too squished if we hadn’t removed it. The straps are easy to use - they undo and extend so easily. I have used the height adjustment with ease too. We had the Maxi cosy basic capsule so this feels like a bit of an upgrade as the straps are easier to undo & tighten." - Bexilly, productreview.com.au

3. Infasecure Achieve Premium Car Seat - Birth to 8 years old, RRP: $829.99

Infasecure Achieve Premium Car Seat Birth To 8 Years Old

The Infasecure Achieve Premium Car Seat is the next evolution of our groundbreaking Birth to Eight Years Type A4/G Convertible Car Seat. It allows for Extended Rearward Facing up to a large 30-month-old, and Forward Facing with an internal harness to a large 8-year-old. Offering the absolute best practice safety to a child through all stages of their development, it’s the only restraint you’ll ever need.

Premium Materials and Comfort; Active Bamboo™

Achieve Premium features our new Active Bamboo™ covers. Active Bamboo™ is a high performance, premium quality bamboo charcoal fabric. The gently woven yarn wicks away moisture, keeping your child cool and dry whilst offering a soft, smooth surface ensuring your child travels in complete comfort. Also, we’ve completely redesigned the covers, utilising the highest levels of craftsmanship, and the new modular infant insert offers support and comfort to smaller babies.

Features:

  • Suitable from birth to large 8-year-old

  • Extended Rearward Facing to large 30-month-old

  • Extended Forward Facing with an internal harness to large 8-year-old

  • Ultra-compact width – great for 3 across

  • Secur-air™ –  Triple Layer Crash Protection

  • Air Cocoon Techology™ (A.C.T.) integrated

  • Active Bamboo™ – high performance, premium quality bamboo charcoal fabric

  • Available in 2 modern colours

  • Twist & Lift™ – One-handed headrest & harness adjustment

  • Press-Stud attached cover – remove without uninstalling

  • Easy remove shoulder pads

  • Twist-resistant shoulder straps

  • Adjustable crotch buckle

  • New design infant insert

  • 9 recline positions

  • Easy install belt path

  • Tether Strap Adjuster ‘Safety Zone’

  • No anti-rebound bar required

  • Ultra low profile base

  • SafeGrip Belt Clamp included

  • Vehicle seat protector included

Real customer review:

"Wow! This seat is amazing! 9 recline setting making it the best ff seat in the market, beautiful soft bamboo fabric so no more sweaty backs, easy to use twist and lift headrest, easy to remove covers to wash. Really deep seat so lots of leg room for rf toddlers! Highly recommend!! Best seat in the market!!" - KerryS, productreview.com.au

4. Infasecure Attain Premium Car Seat - Birth to 4 years old, RRP: $759.99

Infasecure Attain Premium Car Seat Birth To 4 Years Old

The Infasecure Attain Premium Car Seat takes all of the incredible Premium Range features and packages them up into our slimmest child restraint. With Extended Rearward Facing to 30 months, and Forward Facing to a large 4-year-old, it’s a very little child restraint, but a very big deal.

Measuring an incredibly narrow 420mm approx. across at its widest point in both Rearward and Forward Facing modes, Attain is our narrowest child restraint with an in-built harness on the market to date. Not only is it narrow across, but it also features an ultra-compact Rearward Facing depth, which is great for smaller vehicles (or taller front seat travellers!).

Features:

  • Extended Rearward Facing to large 30-month-old

  • Forward Facing with an internal harness to large 4-year-old

  • Ultra compact width – great for 3 across

  • Ultra compact Rearward Facing depth – great for small vehicles

  • Secur-air™ – Triple Layer Crash Protection

  • Air Cocoon Technology™ integrated

  • Active Bamboo™ – high performance, premium quality bamboo charcoal fabric

  • Available in 2 modern colours

  • Twist & Lift™ one-handed headrest & harness adjustment

  • Press-Stud attached cover – remove without uninstalling

  • Easy to remove shoulder pads

  • Twist-Resistant shoulder straps

  • Height adjustable crotch buckle

  • New modular design Infant Insert

  • 9 recline positions

  • Easy install belt path

  • Tether Strap Adjuster ‘Safety Zone’

  • No anti-rebound bar required

  • Ultra low profile base

  • Vehicle seat protector included

  • SafeGrip Belt Clamp included

Real customer review:

"The Attain Premium is a quality of life child seat, that is quality of life for the parents.Two motion belt height adjustment (just twist and lift, no re-routing belts) Significant cushioning customisation options for the ideal fit. Intuitive belt tightening and loosening, it’ll become muscle memory in days.Outstanding stability in the car and easily accessible belt routing for the non-IsoFIX fitment Finally, those belt holders for when the seatbelts are undone are a godsend, keeps the belts stretched out on the sides, o fishing for the belt behind baby after you put them in! We have two Attains running side by side and they’ve allowed sufficient space for both driver and passenger seat position. Tested in Honda Civic Type R (2019) & Skoda Karoq (2020)" - Lee, amazon.com.au

5. Maxi-Cosi Vita Smart Convertible Car Seat, RRP: $749.00

2  Maxi Cosi Vita Smart Convertible Car Seat

The Maxi-Cosi Vita Smart Convertible Car Seat offers lifesaving technology with superior comfort features for children from birth to 4 years of age. Vita Smart features our new Safety Shield technology, which offers tailored and patented, Air Protect and G-CELL head and torso protection whilst being Australia’s most compact rearward facing car seat at 540mm depth.

  • Safety Shield, Dual Action Protection, offering superior head and torso protection.

  • Air ProtectTM superior side impct protection, featuring NEW compact design formula

  • NEW compact G-CELL design for improved safety and ease of installation.

  • Compact rearward facing car seat @540mm depth.

  • Large seating depth for superior child comfort for older ages.

  • Fitted with ISOGO for easy installation, NEW smart and compact ISOGO storage.

  • Rearward facing to 30months approximately (maximum height marker 390mm)

  • Forward facing to 4 years of age approximately (maximum height marker of 435mm)

  • Anti Twist harness strap guides.

  • Modular Infant Insert: Offering superior comfort for newborns with 'Cool Baby' wicking fabric.

  • 3D Mesh for added pressure support and airflow.

  • 8 position headrest, and built in harness adjustment.

  • Easy 3 position forward-facing seat recline.

  • Built in rebound bar for simple quick seat installation.

  • Removable and machine washable seat covers.

  • Easy-Out Magnetic Harness Holders to aid simple and safe use of harness.

Real customer review:

"Love our new purchase! Washable covers (perfect for those messy moments), and it’s relatively light! Easy to install, looks nice and I know our baby will be safe and comfortable. I love that it’s convertible up to 4 years. The safety harness is also easy to do up." - Alice7, target.com.au

6. Mother’s Choice Shine Convertible Car Seat, $279.00

Mothers Choice Shine Convertible Car Seat

The Mother’s Choice Shine Convertible Car Seat is suitable from birth to 4 years of age. It has a cosy newborn insert providing extra comfort for your newborn. With a built in rebound bar and one handed recline this convertible car seat is easy to install and easy to use. • Easy, one handed 3 position forward-facing recline

  • One step, easy base setup for rearward-facing installation with built-in rebound bar

  • Soft infant insert and head pillow for newborn to be used from 0 to approx. 6 months

  • Crotch buckle and harness pads for added comfort

  • Removable and machine washable covers

  • 2 year warranty on the covers and 6 years on the hardware 

Still confused? No problem

Want to see the best of prams in Australia up close? Come to our next Sydney baby expo or Melbourne baby expo by visiting our Sydney baby expo page here or our Melbourne baby expo page here.

Disclaimer:

The One Fine Baby team are first and foremost mums - between us we have 25 children, and decades of experience in all things bump, baby and beyond. We regularly bring together our tried, researched and recommended products in a review style format such as this post. The articles include some paid inclusions which goes to helping us keep our audiences informed on the top products happening right here, right now in the parenting space. Please be sure that no product will ever be included in our articles, paid or otherwise, if it doesn’t deserve to be there.

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