Monthly Archive:: October 2013

ABC Expo 2013: New Diono & Little Tikes Boosters




We already covered Diono’s new line of convertibles in a previous blog. Now for info on their new boosters.

Diono is adding two new boosters to its lineup to join the existing Monterey and Santa Fe. These new boosters will have a slightly lower price-point and are made of blow-molded plastic. Diono has included strategic air pockets and interior ribbing to make the blow-molded seats stronger and more reinforced in a crash, improving their performance.

The Cambria is the new high-back booster, and will be rated for 40-120 lbs. It has lower LATCH attachments and swivel-out cupholders/snack trays on both sides. It has six height positions (versus the Monterey’s 11), and will retail for about $99.99.

New Diono Booster - Cambria  New Diono Boosters


The new backless booster is called the Solana. It also features LATCH attachments and swivel-out cupholders/snack trays, and it will also have a 40-lb minimum. Retail price is about $39.99.

Diono Booster  Diono Booster


Diono expects the boosters to be available in the US and Canada around the end of this year.

The other news in Diono boosters is that the company has purchased a license to brand booster seats under the Little Tikes name. Although Little Tikes is often considered a company for infants and toddlers, they are beginning to focus on products for the 5+ age group, so the boosters will be geared in that direction.

The line will include backless and high-back boosters in bright primary colors. The seats are unique from Diono’s existing line of booster seats and will retail for $19.99-$59.99. Little Tikes boosters are expected in 2014 and will also be marketed in Canada.

Little Tikes Boosters  Little Tikes Boosters

Little Tikes Highback Booster Measurement  Little Tikes Highback Booster Measurement

Little Tikes Highback Booster  Little Tikes Highback Booster

Little Tikes Backless Booster  Little Tikes Backless Booster

Little Tikes Backless Boosters


Kiddy Evolution Pro Infant Carseat Preview


Kiddy EvolutionPRO infant seatA couple days ago we brought you a video of the Kiddy Evolution Pro infant seat. At the time, we had absolutely no information about the seat, so we made stuff up. (Just kidding—but we didn’t have any information to share.) But now we have answers!

The Evolution Pro is interesting in that it can lie flat. That had us scratching our heads a bit, trying to figure out how safe that would be in a car. The very simple answer (that we hadn’t even considered) is that it is not meant to lie flat in the car, just in a stroller or on the floor. I’m not sure why that possibility hadn’t occurred to us, but there it is.

Kiddy has built safeguards into the seat to ensure that people can’t install it while it’s flat. For one, it won’t snap into the base unless the seat is in the proper position. Second, as you recline the seat into its flat mode, little tabs pop up to block the belt path on the seat itself.

The seat will be rated from 6-35 lbs, but a preemie inlay will be available to reduce the minimum weight all the way down to 3 lbs. The insert consists of a headrest, body support, and a wedge/pommel to help fill the gap in the crotch area and prevent slumping.

The seat features a no re-thread harness that adjusts to five different heights.

As if lying flat weren’t different enough, here’s another big difference for you: The seat will have a 3-point harness.

Initially we thought the 3-point was just a prototype from Europe, but it really will be that way on the US model as well. The Kiddy representatives said that a 5-point wouldn’t allow the seat to lie flat, and they also feel confident in their decision to bring a Euopean-style 3-point to the US market. The Evolution Pro has been in Europe since May, and it has passed all testing there, including side-impact testing. They feel it will perform equally well in American testing.

Here are Heather and Kecia going over some of the seat’s features:


The prototype base features a ratcheting system to tighten the seatbelt or LATCH belt. The handle must be up in the car (and won’t click into the base if it isn’t). Baseless, the seat allows for European belt routing.

Kiddy Evolution Pro - early PROTOTYPE base

Kiddy Evolution Pro – early PROTOTYPE base


The Evolution Pro will come in several colors, from neutral to zebra print. You’ll also be able to mix-and-match covers and inserts to create adorable combinations.

Kiddy Evolution Pro  Kiddy Evolution Pro

Accessories include a mosquito net/breathable rain cover combo.

Kiddy Bug/Rain Shield  Kiddy Bug/Rain Shield


The Kiddy Evolution Pro is expected around the first quarter of 2014. It will retail for about $299 for the seat and base, and extra bases will be available for about $99.

ABC Expo 2013: Ride Safer Travel Vest and More! (Safe Traffic System Inc.)


Safe Traffic System foam boosterSafe Traffic System Inc. brings us the Ride Safer Travel Vest, which we love as a travel option or when we need to squeeze a kid in a very narrow 3-across situation where nothing else will fit. They continue to expand their product line to make the vests more useful and mainstream. Let’s start with the new backless booster. It’s made almost completely of EPP foam, which makes it about as lightweight as you can get. It does have some metal in it to reinforce it, but it’s still pretty flexible. The booster, which doesn’t have a name yet (ETA: It now has a name: the Delighter), can be used with or without the vest. When used with the type 2 vest with tether or the type 3 vest, limits are 3 years and 30 lbs. When used without the vest, limits are 4 years and 40 lbs. Size-wise, the booster is about 9″ at its narrowest on the bottom at the back, 14″ at the armrests at the back, and 14″ at the front. Initial models won’t have LATCH, but it will eventually be phased in. The booster can also be used in conjunction with the type 2 vest and the airplane strap on an airplane. Say what?

Yep. STS has also developed an airplane seat strap á la the CARES harness. It will be a brightly colored strap–color to be determined–that wraps around the airplane seat to secure the top of the vest to the seat. The tray will be able to fold down for the person sitting behind, just like the CARES harness. Just like the Ride Safer Vest weight limit, the upper weight limit for the airplane strap is 80 lbs. Booster use with the airplane strap/vest isn’t required on the plane. No release date for the airplane strap yet since it’s being held up for approval by the FAA, which is currently closed due to the government shutdown. Price is expected to be around $25 for the accessory plane strap.

Release date for the booster is 1st quarter 2014. Price is expected to be around $40.

ETA: Additions made are colored red.

Safe Traffic System booster airplane strap front  Safe Traffic System booster airplane strap  Safe Traffic System airplane strap back

News Flash: Breaking Diono News, Updated Convertibles, Higher Limits!


Diono Rainier, Diono Pacifica and Diono Olympia!


The Diono Rainier is now available! See our preview here: Diono Rainier Convertible plus Booster Preview

Diono is debuting their new convertible series, based on the popular Diono Radian models.  The new lineup will be added to the current Radian series.  They feature somewhat deeper side wings than the Radian models.   In the head area, a new compression wall design features “Rigid double wall structure for side impact protection.”  The outside wall compresses under load to absorb additional energy in an impact, increasing side impact performance without increasing width.  The new fabrics are soft, wick moisture for comfort and are wipeable.  They will also include a “Safety Synergy” label and should arrive second quarter, 2014, at Amazon and other retailers.  They will arrive in Canada around the same time as in the USA!

The Olympia is the first model, featuring the new covers, new fashions and improved side impact protection.  It has a 45 pound rear-facing limit, 70 pounds forward-facing and 110 pounds in booster mode.  $279.99 MSRP.

The Pacifica adds a deluxe infant body support cushion and increases the limits to 50 pounds rear-facing, 90 pounds forward facing and 120 pounds in booster mode. $319.99 MSRP.

The Rainier is the top model in the lineup (pictured above) and adds thicker, more protective looking adjustable headwings to the Pacifica.  $359.99 MSRP.

All three models maintain an 80 pound Super LATCH rating, subject to 2014 federal standard changes.

Stay tuned here and on our facebook page for more on Diono’s updated boosters, including the little tikes branded booster.