In the market for a very unique and interesting rear facing only car seat? The Orbit Baby fits this category to a ‘T’.
- Weight range: 4-30 lbs
- Height range: 19-32″
- Shell height: 19″
- Lowest harness position: 9″
- Weight (carrier only): 10 lbs
- Expiration date: 7 years
- Handle position: At the shell
- Rotating car seat base for easy docking at any angle into the car
- Car seat base that fits both the infant car seat and toddler seat rear facing
- Car seat hub that also locks into the stroller frame and rocker
- Full coverage UV sunshade with Paparazzi Shield™ extension
- Fabrics certified safe by Oeko-Tex® Standard 100
- Meets all applicable flame retardancy standards without the potentially harmful chemicals, like PBBs and PBDEs
- Secure installation in only 60 seconds just by turning the StrongArm™ knob
- Soft carrier handle
- Lower Birth Weight Fit Kit available separately
Fit to Child
If using this seat with newborns, it is highly recommended to use the lower birth weight fit kit. It wasn’t available when this Little was born and I found the seat to be a bit big for her.
The model on the left was 2 days old, about 7.5 lbs and 21 inches long. She just barely came to the bottom harness slot and had to use a rolled receiving blanket behind the crotch buckle to take up the extra room. I found after using it for about a week that the infant head support that came with it actually caused her head to drop down to her chest, so I stopped using it and put rolled receiving blankets in its place.
I also found the harness comfort pads to be way too thick on her little body, so avoided using those as well.
The lower birth weight fit kit became available when she was about 2 months old, and 10 lbs. It includes an under upholstery foam insert to raise the infant up, 2 side bolsters to take up the extra room on either side of the infant, and a smaller chest clip. The bolsters and foam from the lower birth weight fit kit is designed for infants weighing 4-11 lbs. The chest can be used as long as needed. I found the fit to be pretty awkward with my 2 month old, but it might have worked better for a smaller infant.
The infant fit in the seat was great as this Little grew. She’s a peanut, so it took a bit for her to fit well in it. Here she is at 8 months, 15 lbs, and 27 inches. I kept the smaller chest clip on the rest of the time we used the seat due to her narrow shoulders. Orbit baby allows the use of each of the lower birth weight fit kit pieces individually as needed. She still had several inches above her head. It was a little more difficult to use the Paparazzi Shield at this point due to her feet going past the end of the car seat though.
The Orbit has several unique car seat features including a nice big canopy with a Paparazzi Shield that stores rolled up in the canopy and attaches to the bottom of the seat with elastic. I loved this feature in the rain, snow, and wind. The soft carry handle was helpful when carrying the heavy seat on your arm. The seat also has an easily removable cover as well that can be removed without needing to take the harness out.
Installation was very simple with and without the base. I installed it in a 2007 Kia Rondo with no issues at all.
The StrongArm technology consists of a knob at the front of the car seat that when it’s turned, it pushes a bar/arm into the seat back to tighten the base up against the vehicle seat. Requires much less force than tightening manually. The StrongArm can be used with both lower anchor and seat belt installs.
**Important note about the StrongArm – There is a recall on the base due to the StrongArm detaching or failing to tighten. To find out more please check our recall notice.**
The base also has a seat belt lock off so you don’t have to lock the seat belt. The lock off works well and is very easy to use.
The most unique feature of this car seat is the rotating hub on the base and seat. You can dock the seat in any position then turn it into the rear facing position. I found this feature nice when keeping the seat in the car and just taking the baby out of the seat. It can rotate 180 degree on the base so it’s not possible to turn it into a forward facing position. There is a window on the base that shows red when it isn’t clicked into the correct rear facing position and green when it is.
One big downfall to the base is the weight of it; the base itself weighs 15 lbs. The seat is also heavy at 10 lbs, but the soft handle and narrowness of the seat helps with easier carrying.
Overall this seat is very well suited for larger/older babies. The rotating hub is a nice feature, especially if you don’t always take the seat out of the car with the infant in it. Due to its decently tall shell, the seat is a long-lasting rear facing only seat. The upholstery is soft and easy to clean. A few of the downfalls are the newborn fit and the weight of the seat. Due to the hub on the bottom of the car seat, it can also make it a bit awkward to carry. We typically kept it in the car most of the time and just took her out. If we were going to be out for a while, we used the stroller frame with it and that was a nice addition and much easier to deal with than lugging the heavy seat around.
The Orbit Baby G2 rear facing only seat has been replaced by the G3 with a few changes to the look and feel of the upholstery. They have the same specs though. You can find the Orbit Baby G3 on Amazon.com.
Orbit Baby didn’t endorse or provide the seat for this review. As always, opinions are all our own. Originally written by Angela Tastad. Edits maintained by CSFTL.