In this article, we will compare two popular infant car seats from well-known companies, UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30. Note that UPPAbaby Mesa is quite more expensive than Chicco KeyFit 30. So, should you choose the pricier model or just stick with the more affordable one? Continue reading below for the answer!
What we will discuss in this article include:
– The size and weight of each infant car seat here
– The available color choices on each model
– The installation system on each model
– The features of UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30
– The safety and height/weight limits on each model
– Which infant car seat that is generally more recommended
Let’s begin by making sure that these infant car seats will actually fit inside your car. There is no point in buying an infant car seat with great features if you won’t be able to use it at all. You also need to consider the dimensions of the infant car seat if you need to use two or even three units across the backseat, or if you need a portable model for traveling. See also: Chicco Fit2 vs UPPAbaby Mesa.
UPPAbaby Mesa measures 17 inches wide, 28 inches deep, and 25 inches tall. Compared to Chicco KeyFit 30, UPPAbaby Mesa is just a little bit longer and taller. The differences in their depth and height are not significant. UPPAbaby Mesa is slim enough to allow you to use two or three units simultaneously across the back seat of a medium-sized car. In addition, it won’t take too much leg room when put directly behind the driver’s seat.
However, this infant car seat is quite heavy. It weighs about 26 lbs. Hence, it may be a bit difficult to carry around. While you can still move the infant car seat from your car to a stroller and vice versa, this infant car seat is not the most recommended options for traveling.
Chicco KeyFit 30 is a little bit more compact. It measures 17 inches wide, 27.5 inches deep, and 24 inches tall. As mentioned above, the differences here are rather marginal. Chicco KeyFit 30 allows you to fit two or three units across the backseat easily.
This car seat is significantly lighter, as it weighs only about 17 lbs. As the effect, it is a highly viable option for traveling. You can easily move it from your car to a stroller and vice versa. It won’t take too much effort when you need to bring it along when traveling.
Available Color Options
Before we proceed to the more technical aspects, let’s first take a look at the available color options on UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30. They each provide a few options, so that you can choose the color variant that suits your preference best.
UPPAbaby Mesa comes with 4 color options. There are Jake (black), Charcoal Melange Wool Version (dark gray), Henry (light gray), and Taylor (black and dark blue).
Chicco KeyFit 30 comes 5 color options. There are Orion (black with gray canopy), Energy (black and green), Lilla (grayish brown with a dotted pattern), Eucalyptus (black and blue), and Papyrus (grayish brown and dark brown).
Now, let’s take a look at the installation system of UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30. Which infant car seat is easier and more practical to set up? Most parents usually need to multi-task while taking care of their babies, so choosing an infant car seat that is easy and quick to set up is essential.
UPPAbaby Mesa has a proprietary installation system which is called SMART Secure. This system has auto-retracting latch connectors that are very easy to use. You can easily attach the latch connectors and achieve the proper tightness level. The system also has a visual indicator which changes between red and green to help you determine whether the installation is already tight enough or not.
However, UPPAbaby Mesa is always in a flat position. It does not allow you to adjust the recline angle. So, it is not recommended for big toddlers who need to start sitting in a more upright position.
If you need an infant car seat that can work with a stroller, UPPAbaby Mesa is compatible with the UPPAbaby Vista stroller and the UPPAbaby Cruz stroller. You don’t need any adapter to use the infant car seat on either of these strollers; it will fit perfectly right away. You can easily attach and detach this infant car seat onto either stroller, as it has a one-handed release mechanism.
Chicco KeyFit 30, on the other hand, comes with the Super Cinch LATCH tightener. This feature is designed to allow you to tighten the latch connectors quickly and effortlessly. The company claims that this installation system is the easiest to use among all infant car seats in the market. While that statement can be subjective, it is indeed very easy to use. The installation is quick and really secure.
This model is also equipped with the Recline Sure leveling foot, which allows you to adjust the seat’s recline angle easily. So, you can change the recline angle to provide a more comfortable position for a toddler.
There are Ride Right bubble indicators that will help you determine when the recline angle is already suitable for the seat position. Chicco KeyFit 30 can be used as a travel system, as it is compatible with a wide range of Chicco strollers. It also has a one-handed release mechanism, so it is very easy to attach and detach.
Both UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30 have five-point harness systems and removable fabrics. However, there are several notable differences that set them apart in terms of features.
UPPAbaby Mesa is really convenient and easy to use mainly because it has an easy-to-adjust harness system which doesn’t require any manual re-threading. It allows you to adjust the harness position and tighten the fit on your child without having to uninstall or re-attach the harness straps.
This is a distinctive advantage over many other infant car seats in the market which require manual re-threading of the harness straps. In addition, there are storage pockets for the harness buckles.On the top, there is a handlebar which will allow you to lift and carry the infant car seat easily. There is also a nice canopy with SPF protection, so it can shield your baby against bright lights as well as the harsh ultraviolet light of the sun.
UPPAbaby Mesa has removable fabrics to allow easy cleaning. Unfortunately, the fabrics are not machine-washable. You need to wash them gently by hands.
Chicco KeyFit 30 has a five-point harness system to secure your child properly. It has an easy-pull tightener which will allow you to tighten the harness straps on your child for a snug fit. It also has removable head and body pads to enhance the fit and support for a newborn baby.
However, it requires manual re-threading when you want to change the harness position. This is a bit inconvenient, as the manual re-threading process takes some time and effort.
It also has a handlebar for easy lifting and carrying. It has a wide canopy to shield your baby from bright lights.
Chicco KeyFit 30 is very easy to clean, thanks to the removable, machine-washable fabrics. So, when you need to take care of spills and stains, you only need to detach the fabrics and throw them into your washing machine. Meanwhile, the plastic parts, straps, and buckles can be cleaned using a sponge, a mild soap, and some water.
Safety and Height/Weight Limits
For sure, both models here have been tested to meet or exceed the federal and industrial safety standards. They are made from high-quality materials that are highly durable and able to absorb impact forces. So, they should be able to provide adequate safety and protection for your child in most crash conditions.
Both UPPAbaby MESA and Chicco KeyFit 30 are FAA-approved for airplane use. That said, before going on a flight, you should ask the airline company whether you are allowed to bring an infant car seat into the airplane or not, as different airlines may have different rules.
UPPAbaby Mesa is suitable for a newborn baby or infant between 4 – 35 lbs. The maximum child height limit is 32 inches. So, it is suitable for most babies, and it can be used for some time before you need to switch to a larger car seat.
Chicco KeyFit 30 has lower weight and height limits. It is only suitable for a newborn baby or infant between 4 – 30 lbs. The maximum child height limit is only 30 inches. So, it is only suitable for small babies, and your baby will probably outgrow this infant car seat quickly.
UPPAbaby Mesa vs Chicco KeyFit 30
Between these two models, UPPAbaby Mesa is more recommended. This model has better features and higher weight/height limits. It has a harness system which is easily adjustable without re-threading, and it will remain usable for slightly longer before your child outgrows it.