This will come as no surprise to most of our readers. Length isn’t everything; it’s the width that tends to be be an issue. Take, for example, these two towering titans:
The one on the left measures an astounding 20 inches at its widest point, while the one on the right is even wider at 21 inches! Every situation is different, of course, so depending where they are placed, being so wide may or may not be a problem. Also, parts of them are narrower, so they may mesh differently with adjacent models. The Graco My Ride 65 (left) and Britax Advocate CS (right) are competitive in many regards and also share a distinction of being among the widest convertible seats on the market.
Here’s what happens after installation. While you don’t get an idea of the width so much here, you can see how they vary in recline and legroom.
From the front, you can see that these could be uncomfortable for a small person next to them. The widest point is near the top of the My Ride, while the widest point is farther down on the Advocate, along the side impact cushions. This will make a lot of difference when they are going into a narrow position or as part of a puzzle with another seat.
There’s no doubt that bigger can be better. The trend for keeping kids rear-facing and forward-facing to higher weight and height limits is very popular and for good reasons. On the other hand, there’s also something to be said for smaller and narrower in many situations. If you have a side-by-side or a three-across installation, you’ll know what I mean!