The Chicco Fit2 earned our Editors' Choice award due to strong performance and the unique capability to allow little ones to remain in an infant seat longer than the average seat. This seat is straightforward to install using the LATCH method and could potentially prevent installation problems that might lead to injuries. The Fit 2 has an anti-rebound bar, additional padding for comfort, and a substantial headrest for shoulder height adjustment. We like this car seat and feel it is one we would recommend to a friend, which helped it earn an Editors' Choice award. However, the additional features add weight to the carrier pushing it over 12 lbs, making it a poor choice for parents that plan to carry it. Also, the higher price tag and limited stroller compatibility mean some parents might be better off with other options.
Chicco Fit2 Review
Pros: Super easy LATCH install, easy to use, nice comfort and quality
Cons: Heavy, only compatible with limited strollers
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Chicco brand is the largest baby-centric brand in Europe as part of the Artsana Group. The Artsana company is a holistic lifestyle company offering a variety of products, from baby feeding and gear to medical supplies. Founded by Enrico Catelli, the Chicco (kee-ko) brand offers baby products for baby from pregnancy to preschool and are currently available in more than 120 countries.
In our evaluation of the crash test results, the Chicco Fit2 earned a slightly above average score. The test results indicate a potential additional margin of protection over some of the competition with chest clip results that are better than the majority of competitors and a head sensor (HIC) score that is better than the majority of products with only three options scoring lower (better).
The two charts below show the crash test results for the Chicco Fit2 (in black) compared to the seats that scored the best in the crash tests (shown in green). The Cybex Aton 2 has the highest results for the chest sensor, and the Fit2 is only slightly lower.
The head sensor (HIC) on the Fit2 performed better than the average, with only a few products performing better during testing.
Studies show that rear-facing car seat installation is the safest position for babies. The Fit2 is unique amongst infant car seats in that it has a height limit 3 inches taller than the average seat, which translates to remaining in the Fit2 longer. Keeping older/larger babies rear-facing for longer can potentially increase safety for children during a crash. This seat also includes an anti-rebound bar, which could potentially decrease forces on a little one's body during an accident.
Ease of Install - LATCH
The Chicco Fit2 is one of the easiest seats in this review to install using LATCH. Studies indicate that injuries from car crashes are often related to car seat installation mistakes. Therefore, we think the ease of installation is important.
The Fit2 LATCH anchors are push-button anchors and have a central pull strap called the SUPERCINCH® that makes tightening anchor straps easier and more efficient.
Compared to the competition, the Fit is super easy and quick to install correctly. This seat has a bubble style level, and a leveling foot called the RECLINESURE® that helps parents find just the right angle for a proper installation every time.
Ease of Install - Belt
The Chicco Fit2 is also easy to install using the vehicle belt, though not as straightforward as the LATCH installation.
The Fit2 has a color-coded belt path with a belt lock-off. The belt lock-off is hard to use compared to the competition, and while the seat feels secure once installed, it is more complicated than most to get the belt in the lock-off correctly.
Installation with the lap belt only is easier than using a shoulder belt. However, if given a choice, we prefer the LATCH method as it has the potential for fewer installation errors.
Ease of Install - Without the Base
The Fit2 impresses for ease of installation without the base with the second-highest installation score for the Fit2.
The Fit2 uses the European belt path for installation without the base. This belt path utilizes the shoulder portion of the vehicle belt to go around the back of the carrier and the lap part of the strap across the foot area.
We like this style of belt path as it feels more secure than the American method that uses the lap portion only. The belt path is color-coded, and threading the belt is quick.
A big marketing point for this car seat is the ability to use the carrier "for 2 years." This claim stems from the ability to adjust the carrier to a more upright position and 3 inches of additional height allowance over the average car seat limit. While we concede that this seat is usable for a longer period than most infant car seats, we take issue with their "2-year" claim and vague marketing that can be misleading and may not apply to your child. In fact, using the weight and height charts from the CDC, we calculate that only average-sized or smaller children are likely to make the 2-year mark, while children (especially boys) larger than the 50th percentile are unlikely to remain in the seat until 2 years of age. It isn't until you get inside the user manual that Chicco details that babies must meet weight and height limits and ability milestones to remain in the seat. The functionality and longevity of the seat are not as simple as the company marketing wants you to believe. It is NOT a 2-year product, and we worry parents will get this marketing claim in their mind and forget or ignore the real seat use guidelines. This infant car seat works for children from 4-35 lbs, and up to 35 inches as long as their head is 1 inch below the top of the headrest assembly, and before you can adjust the angle to a more upright position, your baby must be able to crawl or walk.
Ease of Use
The Fit2 is one of the easier options to use, with only a few seats earning higher scores.
Ease of use includes features and functionality that impact the daily use of the car seat outside of the installation. These tests help parents determine which products may cause regular frustration.
The Fit2 buckle is not stiff and requires only one hand to operate. The chest clip has a new design and is unlike any other, given its ability to work for older children. It is stiffer than most and harder to squeeze, but fingers don't get caught when opening it. There is a strap found at the foot to tighten the harness. The strap pulls smoothly and doesn't require excess strength. The release button is above the strap on top of the padding. Harness height adjustment is non-rethread and operates with the pull of a tab on the top of the headrest to slide it up and down. The headrest sticks a little, but it isn't hard to use. The harness has seven height positions and two crotch strap positions.
The Fit2 handle has levers on either side for handle rotation adjustment. You only need to press one to move the handle, which is different than most seats and makes the Fit a relatively unique one-handed option. The Fit has four handle positions. The positions allowed during travel in a car depends on the installation stage, and you should read the manual for details.
Carrier and Base Connection
The carrier attaches to the base easily and without problems. We did not have any occurrences where we thought the carrier was attached when it wasn't. It makes an audible click when installing correctly.
LATCH Anchors and Manual Storage
The LATCH anchors stow in pockets located on the sides of the base and require you to roll the straps up for storage. This storage keeps them out of the way and prevents them from interfering with carrier base attachment. The user manual stores in the head of the base. The storage area is adequate, but like so many other seats, this means you won't have the manual should you be using the carrier without the base.
The Fit offers impressive comfort and quality, with only a few options matching its performance.
This carrier has thick padding and soft fabric. The headrest design and padding are better than the competition and looks like it would be very comfortable for napping. The fit and finish of the seat and canopy look sharp using high-quality materials. The canopy is large and looks good. It has a nice rotating forward feature, but it can be somewhat awkward to operate.
The Fit2 is a porker with a weight of 12 lbs. This weight makes the Fit2 one of the heavier options in the review and a poor choice for parents who may need to carry the car seat regularly.
Carrier weight may be less important if you won't be toting the seat or plan to attach to a stroller. However, for urban parents that may need to move their carrier without the base and potentially without a stroller, then the weight is important.
The Fit2 is compatible with a variety of Chicco brand strollers, including the award-winning Chicco Shuttle. Because this seat is relatively new, it is unclear what other brands might offer an adapter in the future. We suggest contacting the manufacturer of any stroller you are interested in to confirm compatibility.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz