* Prices may differ from that shown
We purchased our Maxi-Cosi seat from Halfords. We don't normally purchase things from there, but we weanted to see exactly what we were buying-and they had the best price on the market at the time.
On first appearance the seat looked really neat and compact. I loved the design-plain, but with something extra. The seat is for use from birth-13kg (approximately 9-12 months).
Although you don't have to, we were recommended the Maxi-Cosi familyfix base or the easybase to go with it, although they didn't actually have either of them in stock on the day. I was quite glad as this would have cost me an additional £75-£130!
The actual seat cost us £110.99 as it was in the sale-but they range up to £159.99 when they are full price.
You can fasten this seat into your car in three different ways:
-with the maxi-cosi family fix base
-with the maxi-cosi easybase
-with a regular 3-point car seat belt
The car seat has special harness belts which stay open, making it a lot easier to take our baby out of the seat. Although car seats for older children often have this feature, we were told by the sales assistant that only this seat in this specific age group has this feature. It's really easy to alter the straps on this seat-we just have to press a button at the rear of the seat.
I really like this car seat and my daughter is always happy to be in it, although I don't think that she will be comfortable in it for as long as it says. The seat has a side protection system, a support pillow and a head hugger, so it is really well padded. As the babies get bigger and are able to hold their head up better, you simply remove the pillow and headhugger. If you purchase the familyfix base, the seat can be adjusted to an upward position when the babies are a few months old.
The family fix pebble seat comes with an integrated sun canopy, which folds under the flexible rim. This has been absolutely priceless for us over the summer.
I would recommend this seat as it looks really classy, but also feels a lot sturdier than the other car seats we looked at whilst in Halfords. It is pretty pricey, and a bit of a pain to strap in if you haven't purchased a base- but those are my only negatives. My sister-in-law also has this seat, but with the family fix base. I couldn't believe how much easier it was when I put the car seat in her car-it just slides in. It even lights up and beeps when it's been clicked into the right place, so you know you've done it right.
When shopping for a car seat I decided to go for a seat compatible with the Isofix system and wanted one that was good quality. I looked at the seat that matched my pram but wasn't impressed by the quality so decided to go for the maxi-cosi pebble. I also tried to find the adaptors for the pram base and whilst 'officially' the adaptors didn't fit I went to John Lewis and tried it and it fitted fine! I really like the fact that this fixes to the Isofix base and that it comes with an insert for a newborn baby which you simply take out as your baby grows. It also still fitted my baby when she was one so it lasted longer than I expected. It is also easy to use without Isofix so that when I went out with my sister I didn't need to remove the Isofix base from my car. This is a good quality item and worth the money.
This car seat is one which my grandchildren have had and we have been made familiar with again due to the new arrival! It has been used for 3 of the grandchildren now which I think just goes to reflect how substantial and good quality it is.
The car seat is suitable for newborns up to around 9 months, if you have a large baby then it may be more like 6 months but it is measured by size and their weight too, both are taken into consideration before they are moved up to the next size seat.
This seat faces backwards in the car which is a requirement by law.
It comes with a head-hugger section which bulks the seat out a bit, this head hugger has a cushion attached to it which fills in the big gap at the back where your baby's bum would sit, this is because as your baby grows your baby will be able to fill this space themselves so the head hugger can then be removed providing enough space for your baby again. The head hugger element is very important as it makes the seat that bit smaller so that your newborn is well cushioned and supported with a little padded cushion around their head.
The seat itself comes in a variety of colours and some have patterns on too. The one which we have for the grandchildren is very similar to the one in this picture but the inside is slightly darker grey, almost black.
The carry handle can be moved to lie flat so it is out of the way, you do this by pressing two buttons at the same time and moving the handle. This is quite fiddly as you can probably tell as you are using both hands to press buttons so how do you move the handle? I have worked out to do this by pushing against the handle with the side of my wrist but it definitely is a fiddly process which I'm sure doesn't have to be quite as difficult as it is! From this carry handle you can hang toys if you like to keep your baby distracted and entertained whilst sitting in the seat. As well as toys you can attach the sunshade. This sunshade is tucked behind the back of the seat and unravels as far as the handle. It has little loops that clip onto the pegs on the handle and provides enough cover to shade your baby from the sun or wind which is a great idea, you don't have to start attaching a parasol.
The straps are easy to lengthen, far easier than with many bay related items. If you want more length you just press a button and pull on the straps until they are as far out as you need them to be. To shorten them you pull the excess straps and let them become tighter until they reach the length you need. It is simple to do but not so easy that your baby or a toddler could do it so you don't have to worry about it's safety features. The red button to undo the straps is very stiff and this again is a safety feature as babies can be very inquisitive and learn how to undo the seat for themselves but with this seat it's so stiff that sometimes I struggle with it!
The seat is on slightly bent frame which is so that you can rock this seat should you wish to as it sits on the floor, you can probably tell from the picture that it does this. It's a good idea and it doesn't make the seat any less safe.
To attach it to your car you need a base for it to sit in. I thought this would be complicated at first but it's not. I have reviewed the base previously so for full information about how the base works please refer to that. The basics of the base is that this is what is installed into your car so that when you want to take the seat in and out you just clip it onto the base and then release it. It only takes a matter of seconds and saves you from having to spend time securing the seat to the car each time. This is a great feature and makes it extremely practical even if it does push the price up a bit due to it being another part that you have to buy to go along with this seat. I have been told that this car seat can fix to your car without using a base but that it isn't as safe and I haven't attempted it so wouldn't know how complicated it is.
The car seat also attaches to several different travel system/pushchair combinations which enables you to take the seat straight from your car and put it onto the pushchair/travel system frame without having to transfer your baby from one item to another. This again is a great feature. I am not sure on what pushchairs it is compatible with except for Maxi Cosi ones but my daughter has told me there are several different brands which it will work with.
When you buy this car seat you need to have it installed into your car by a professional. This is a requirement by law so I am unsure as to how this works if you purchase it off the internet. Our car seat came with a DVD too to show us all the steps of installing the car seat, attaching this to the travel system etc so if you are confused as to what to do you can have a very well presented step by step guide.
This car seat has been used many, many times for several years and it still remains in good quality. It is quite hard to clean because the material on the seat is textured so if there are any leaks or spills on this seat it's hard to get them out of the textured areas, you really have to scrub hard with a brush, a sponge, perhaps a toothbrush and also a hoover tool! It is difficult but I assume it is the same for all car seats due to their design.
You can buy a rain cover to add to this car seat. This just sits over the top of it and has a little window in it for you to still be able to have instant access to your baby to pop their dummy back in or to pass them a rattle or something, when this is on you need the handle up at all times else it won't stay in place.
This is a fantastic car seat which I think is very robust and practical. When it is in the car it feels very steady and doesn't move about at all. It is well padded so that it is comfortable but also safe for your baby. It has some very good design elements to it which make it a seat which I'm glad we bought even if it was more expensive than others. The seat cost us £115 and the base was £80 this was 3 years ago and from what I have seen the price hasn't really changed very much at all.
I bought this car seat for my baby daughter, along with the familyfix base. I specifically chose the pebble because of the extra padding at the back of the seat, I have to admit that I have always had a bit of an attitude about babies being hunched over in their car seats. This little bit of extra padding is really useful as it lets the baby lie almost completely flat when they are newborn. In addition to this there is a circular head support which I felt was superior to others which simply go around the outside of the baby's head. It gave me that little piece of extra reassurance that I wasn't hurting her by putting her in the car seat. The pebble also comes with a great sun canopy which tucks nicely into the back of the chair and can simply be pulled out and hooked onto the handle when it is required.
The material which the pebble is made from is quite durable and can be taken off for washing. The pebble is available in a wide range of colours, we decided on the black simply because it was one that would suit a boy or a girl.
In terms of easy of use, the pebble works brilliantly with the familyfix base. The base has three lights on the front, which let you know if the car seat is fitted correctly. It can take literally seconds to put the car seat in and know that it has been fitted correctly. This is a great advantage when you have a screaming baby, or you're simply in a hurry. The pebble does not need to be used with isofix though, a seat belt can be used, and it is pretty straight forward to put in using a seatbelt. I had been a bit worried that the rather large isofix base wouldn't fit into our tiny fiat 500, but we've had no difficulty with this.
In addition to this, the pebble fits onto the quinny buzz 3 stroller chassis which we have. It takes seconds to click this on and off. When we first got the car seat the buttons to un-clip it from the chassis where extremely stiff and required a lot of strength to use. This posed us with a bit of a problem as I was extremely weak after giving birth, but didn't necessarily always have my husband around to unclip the car seat for me. The strange thing about these buttons is that inferior maxi-cosi car seats seem to have better quality buttons.
I love this car seat and once my daughter has outgrown it, I will also be buying the maxi-cosi pearl which fits on the same isofix base.
The pebble was more expensive than other maxi cosi models which are pretty similar. It appears that you are paying a little extra for the look of the pebble and also the head support. In addition to this, the other models come with a different isofix base and I don't know how easy to use this is, in comparison to the familyfix base, which was particularly straight forward.
I have also reviewed this on Ciao! with the same username!