From long-established American buggy and carseat brand Graco, the Slimfit All-in-One claims to be ‘the only carseat you’ll ever need’.

Transforming from a suitable-from-birth baby seat, right into a toddler-friendly car seat and finally right into a high-backed booster for children up to age 12, it’s among only a small number of group 0+/1/2/3 seats out there – and among the cheapest, with an RRP of £169.99. Excellent value if you’re likely to put it to use because of its full lifespan.

Its aesthetics may lack the finesse of other similar seats in the category, and its own sheer height could be a problem for parents in smaller cars, however the Graco Slimfit All-in-One can simply compete with the very best of them safely, comfort and sturdiness.

Tested by:
Jenny lives in London and is a mum of two children, aged five and seven. She tested the Graco Slimfit All-in-One CARSEAT on short daily drives to school and the shops, and on an extended journey to go to family.

What were your first impressions of the Graco Slimfit carseat?
For a thing that has ‘slim’ in its name, it doesn’t look or feel particularly compact. Actually, it’s surprisingly heavy (nearly 9kg) and big – although measurements-wise, it’s fairly average, at around 54cm wide. It looks and feels strong and safe, and comfortable too, with a lot of padding.

How does it compare to other 0+/1/2/3 child car seats?
There are several 0+/1/2/3 car seats available, which span an a long time from birth right up to approximately age 12. The Joie Every Stage (£249.99 on Amazon) is among the finest known & most popular in this category and is £10 more costly compared to the Graco Slimfit. It’s virtually identical in features – offering extended rearward-facing to 18kg and forward-facing up to 36kg. The distinctions are minimal – the Joie Every Stage offers 6 recline positions to Graco Slimfit’s 4, and has two mesh storage pockets, however the Graco Slimfit includes a cup holder.

The flashier Joie Every Stage FX is nearly identical to the Every Stage, however its £60 more with an RRP of £240 in fact it is installed via Isofix.

The Cosatto Overall Rotate (£239.95 on Amazon) is another more costly option which can be secured via Isofix and in addition gets the option of seat belt installation. It gets the same seating options as the Graco Slimfit All-in-One and it includes a swivel function for quick access to your son or daughter. Plus it’s obtainable in several colourful patterns, a signature of the Cosatto brand.

How does it compare to other child car seats you’ve tried?
We’ve used Group 0+ Maxi Cosi child car seats when our children were younger, and the Graco Slimfit All in a single is obviously much bigger and less portable, as you’d expect from a seat with a drastically longer lifespan.

There’s no carry handle (as you’ll find on many baby seats) and it doesn’t put on a travel system. Now our kids have started school, we now have a Britax Romer and a Pampero high-back booster – the Graco Slimfit is substantially taller and wider than both these in high-back booster mode.

What age may be the Graco Slimfit carseat suitable for?
It can be utilised as a rear-facing seat with 5-point harness from 5kg to 18kg (birth to up to four); forward-facing carseat with 5-point harness from 9kg to 18kg (around nine months to four); and a forward-facing high-back booster from 15kg to 36kg (from approx. 4 up to 12 years old). We tested it with a five-year-old and a seven-year-old. It feels and looks secure for all stages, and I’d be happy using it at any age.

How easy could it be to install in the automobile?
The Slimfit doesn’t use Isofix, unlike a great many other comparable Group 0+/1/2/3 child car seats. It includes a base that fixes securely using the vehicle’s seat belt. The instructions (that may be kept in a convenient integral pocket behind the automobile seat) are long-winded and complicated, with plenty of diagrams – it took me around 20 minutes to work through how exactly to install the seat correctly.

However, once it’s in, it felt tightly fixed set up, without movement whatsoever. Many online reviewers like this the seat belt is threaded behind the seat padding, ensuring it’s a safe and snug fit.

It’s relatively simple to convert the seat between modes – for instance, the harness tucks away in the seat when it’s being used as a booster; and the harness height adjusts automatically when you’re altering the headrest, which saves a whole lot of faffing about and takes the worry out of earning sure it’s all positioned correctly.

What’s the Graco Slimfit carseat harness like?
No issues with the harness here. The five-point harness fixes securely with a slim buckle at the front end, that i could easily release one-handed.

Some online reviewers found the buckle slightly fiddly to secure, but this wasn’t a concern for me.

What do you consider of the automobile seat’s look?
It’s both big and clever! Fitting three functions into one seat is no mean feat, even though this does mean it’s bulky, it looks and feels top quality.

Obtainable in several colour variations (mixing black with red or grey), it’s not likely to win any beauty contests or awards for fashion innovation, but it’s been well thought-out regarding comfort and safety and it looks a lot more expensive than its price.

Does the Graco Slimfit carseat feel safe?
Although the seat doesn’t use Isofix, it still feels very strong and safe. The sides of the seat provide protection, as do the large ‘wings’ on the headrest. Graco state the seat contains ‘energy-absorbing foam’ and will be offering ‘TrueShield Safety Surround Side Impact Protection’, providing increased head protection for each and every age stage; it has additionally been both side impact and ProtectPlus engineered (which entails one of the most rigorous crash testing).

On Amazon, where in fact the seat is rated 4.7 out of 5, many shoppers concur that the seat feels safe, reassuringly sturdy, with an extremely cushioned seat.

What exactly are the seat’s recline options?
The seat has 4 different reclining positions, depending which mode you own it in – there are 2 forward-facing and 2 rearward. I particularly like how fast and simple it is to change between your positions – you merely press a lever beneath the front of the seat.

How comfortable may be the Graco Slimfit carseat for your child?
Both our kids loved sitting in it. You will find a LOT of padding, that can be added or recinded as your son or daughter grows. The vast majority of the padding and covers are washable, and being simple to remove. My son, 7, said it had been the comfiest carseat he’d ever sat in – praise indeed!

This judgment is mirrored by lots of the online reviews of the Graco Slimfit All-in-One CARSEAT – the overwhelming most parents loved how cosy and content their baby looked in the cushioned seat.

The Graco’s name suggests it’s slim – is this the case?
Compared to its rivals however, it really is slightly skinnier – all three of its closest rivals are bigger, especially the Cosatto In general Rotate, which at 60cm is 6cm wider.

How’s the height of the Graco Slimfit carseat?
Our biggest problem was the height. The bottom is okay in baby seat or toddler seat mode, but became a pain as a booster seat. With the height adjusted effectively for my 7-year-old, the Slimfit actually felt too tall for our car – a smallish Honda Jazz.

Actually, the height of the headrest combined with width of the medial side ‘wings’ actually blocked almost half of our rear windscreen – something we haven’t had a problem with when working with other car seats. I believe this might be okay in case you have a major car – a persons carrier or SUV; however, when you have a tiny car, this may well not be the seat for you personally.

At its highest it really is 86cm tall, that is a whopping 10cm bigger compared to the Joie Every Stage, the next tallest of its closest competitors, while when compared to Kinderkraft MyWay and Cosatto Overall Rotate, both are over 25cm shorter.

The sheer scale of the Graco Slimfit can be an overriding issue in lots of online reviews of the automobile seat, with several shoppers struggling to match it into smaller cars.