We’ve been waiting for a while for the final approval to be given to the use of compatible car seats in Australia. But now the wait is over with 2 brands recently releasing ISOFIX compatible car seats on the Australian market; Maxi Cosi & Safe-n-Sound.
For those of you who are not familiar with ISOFIX, it’s a car seat installation method that uses clips located on either side of the car seat, rather than the standard lap sash seat belt installation. For cars that have ISOFIX attachments, you basically click the seat in for a quick & easy installation. (In Australia, you are also required to use a top tether strap, irrespective of the mode of installation).
The great thing about the 2 new Australian ISOFIX options though, is that they can be installed multiple ways, meaning you can use them in all cars with or without ISOFIX attachments.
Maxi-Cosi are the first brand to enter the market with their ISOGO range. ISOGO car seats have flexible ISOFIX attachments, which means they work like a safety harness, you clip them in on either side, then adjust the straps so the seat is securely installed (a green indicator lets you know when the car seat has been installed properly).
The ISOGO range features 2 convertible car seats, the Euro & the Hera. Both are rear facing from birth up to approximately 12 months and convert to forward facing up to approximately 4 years. They are priced at $599 & $529 respectively.
Britax have followed quickly with their Trufix car seat. The Trufix has rigid ISOFIX attachments, like a seat belt clip, they clip into the ISOFIX attachments (the Truefix also has an indicator to let you know it’s been installed correctly). The Trufix is forward facing only and suitable for your child from 6 months to approximately 4 years. It’s priced at $499.
Of course, not every car has ISOFIX anchorage points and it will be a while before Australian built cars feature them. In the meantime, it’s important to note that there’s no difference in safety on condition that your car seat is installed properly.
BTW, on average, an ISOFIX compatible car seat will cost you an extra $50.