I’ve decided to document how various combination (harness/booster) seats fit my 4-year-old, 41 lb, 43″ tall son in booster mode. He’s at the size where most parents would be switching from the 5-pt harness to the vehicle’s lap/shoulder belt in booster mode if they had a combination seat with a 40 lb limit on the harness. In each case I’ll use the same seating position in my van – driver’s side captain’s chair in a 2005 Ford Freestar.
The IIHS booster study compared the fit of various boosters using the 6-year-old Hybrid lll dummy who weighs 51.6 lbs (23.41 kg) and has a standing height of almost 45″. I thought it would be even better to show belt fit on a child who was just over the 40 lb weight limit for the 5-pt harness. I’ve decided to focus exclusively on combination seats because of their popularity.
This week we’ll be looking at the Dorel (Cosco/Safety 1st/Eddie Bauer) Apex 65 as a booster. This seat has also been sold as the Alpha Elite Apex Booster. To be honest, this seat shouldn’t qualify for review in this series because it is a higher-weight harness (HWH) seat. My son could still use this seat with the harness. He is no where near the 65 lb limit and still has plenty of growing room height-wise in the harness. But I had this seat in the house and I wanted to try him in it in booster mode. He is over the 40 lb minimum for booster usage so he could technically use this seat that way.