View Full Version : Need to decide: Britax Parkway or Ricaro Vivo???
09-27-2007, 09:07 AM
I need to buy 2 boosters right away for by 4 year old DD (41", 38lbs). I am in between the Britax Parkway (leaning more towards this) and the Ricaro Vivo. I like that they are not huge (like the Regent) and have side impact. Any suggestions? Also is there another similar to these I should consider?
09-27-2007, 12:37 PM
I think the Parkway fits little kids very well, and is extremely easy to buckle...only way to know for sure is to try them both out, but based on my experience I'd vote Parkway (given that my experience hasn't involved actually touching a Vivo, just seeing the lapbelt guides look hard to buckle around...)
Julie CPS Tech and mom to 3 in seats
09-27-2007, 04:47 PM
We have a Parkway AND a Recaro Young Style (same as new Vivo). These are my thoughts:
Without a doubt when DD has to ride in someone else's car she gets the Parkway, it's almost foolproof to buckle and I know the other moms will get it right. A few times when I've sent them off with the Recaro she's come home with the seatbelt on top of the seat and not pushed down under the arm rests through the belt route. (!!!!!)
If SHE had to choose, she much prefers the fit of the Recaro Young Style (Vivo). She says it feels more comfy in the shoulder area. And while they both have deep headwings, the Recaro headwings wrap around slightly less meaning she can see more out of this booster. But the difference is really small. She also likes the armrests of the Recaro. But then again she also likes the cupholder feature of the Parkway, although it's useless for actually holding cups, it usually just holds small stuffed toys that "ride along". We also like the Recaro's handle on top to carry it.
You can't go wrong with either booster, they're both excellent. Just make sure your child is READY for a booster- they have to have the maturity to sit still and not lean forward or to the side at all times. DD is still in a Regent in our cars but we have boosters for travel, for when she rides in other cars or when we give rides to her friends.
Let us know what you decide!
DD 5.3 years, 43 inches, 43 lbs
10-08-2007, 08:31 PM
We've had a Parkway for almost 2 years (our DD is 7 now), and we just got a Vivo. I like the Vivo significantly better than the Parkway, and she says she likes it better too. First of all, the construction of the Vivo is just on a whole different level. I would expect the Vivo to cost $40-50 more than the Parkway, which seems almost flimsy in comparison. For the Vivo to be the same price is a real bargain. The plastic is so thick and solid, the headrest is reinforced with steel. The mechanism to raise and lower the headrest seems to be extremely well designed. The Parkway head section reallys starts to bend when it is raised up high. I could go on about all that.
More importantly, the side impact protection seems much better. The side wings for the torso have EPS foam, while the Parkway only has EPS around the head. The Vivo has protection around the hips too (but no EPS there). The Parkway head wings are around 6-6.5" deep compared to 8" on the Vivo. Despite being so deep, they are more comfortable for my daughter and she sits with her head back more. With the Parkway, the ergonomics of the seat caused her to keep her head more upright, such that it was actually outside of the wings. I didn't feel they were really offering much protection at all for that reason.
I can only think of a couple of negatives regarding the Vivo. The Vivo keeps the belt really low on the child's lap, which is a good thing. However, for a very small child, the belt path may be too far forward. My DD is 49" and around 50 pounds. It is slightly harder to buckle, but no big deal in my mind. It was a pain to connect the base to the back when I opened the box, but once I learned the trick it was fine.
I have also found that the Vivo works better in our second car (a 2006 Honda Accord). The Parkway is unstable on the center seat of that car (due to a slight hump). The Vivo sits firmly on the hump. I actually bought it only to use in the Accord, but now we're using it as our primary seat in our Sienna because I like it so much better than the Parkway.
I would say try both if you can, but, provided the Vivo fits your child well, I doubt you will prefer the Parkway. You can get it from elitecarseats.com and buy their return shipping insurance if it doesn't work out. Regarding the other posters comment about the Recaro Young Style booster, the Vivo is similar at a glance, but really a very different and a much better seat.
IMPORTANT: I just wanted to add that I would not want a 38 pound 4 year old in any booster. There are a number of 5-point harness seats that will fit a child this size for a year or two more. I put my DD in the Parkway at 5.5 years, and didn't feel comfortable with her being in it until she was 6.5.
These videos show the safety of a 5-point vs. a booster (the difference is shocking and would be even more so if the 5-point in the video were tethered):
Some higher weight/height limit harnessed seat options are: Britax Regent, Sunshine Kids Radian 65, Cosco Apex, Recaro Vivo or Como, Britax Boulevard, Britax Marathon, Fisher Price Safe Voyage (or something like that). Of those, the Regent offers (by far) the most growing room, followed by the Radian.
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