Britax Marathon 70 Convertible Car Seat Reviews
The Britax Marathon 70 convertible car seat:
A Comprehensive Review from experienced consumers.
The Pros and the Cons and where to get the best price for this convertible car seat. (Everything you want to know about the Marathon 70 is on this page!)
Table of Contents for the Britax Marathon 70: (Jump ahead!)
- Best Price
- Ease of Strap Adjustments
- Ease of Installation
- Video Overview
- Customer Reviews
- Washing the Seat Cover
- Pros and Cons
- Plus detailed Photos!
Sales are subject to change daily!
The Britax Marathon 70 is one of the new Next Generation convertible car seats of Britax, and it has vast improvements over it’s predecessor, the Marathon 65 car seat. You’ll be glad to know that it is proudly made in the USA!
The Marathon 70 will fit children rear-facing who weigh 5-40 lbs, and forward-facing for kids weighing up to 70 lbs. The height limit is 49″, however, as with most car seats, the seat is outgrown when your child’s shoulders are above the highest harness slot position, or when her head is one inch from the top of the seat’s shell (that refers to the main shell, not the adjustable head-rest), so it really depends on your child’s torso height and proportions, rather than overall height, as far as how long he will last in any given car seat. The Marathon will fit average children through around the age of 6, as do most convertible car seats, although each child is different. (Most 7-year-old kids are ready for a belt-positioning booster seat, such as the Frontier booster.) The exception with regard to these convertible car seats is always the child with the unusually long torso whose shoulders will reach the top harness position before he reaches the maximum height or weight for the seat.
Is the Britax Marathon 70 Comfortable?
When you touch this car seat, you will find the Marathon 70 to be soft and plush, like a little luxury recliner for your child! The Marathon 70 has a deeper seat than the 65 model, so your child will have more room for her legs and support for her thighs, translating into an even more comfortable sitting experience.
The crotch strap on the Marathon 70 is long – eight inches long, which eliminates a complaint from the older, Marathon 65 model, that the crotch strap was sometimes too tight while the rest of the car seat fit kids perfectly. It also has two different slot positions to accommodate your child’s growth.
There are 3 reclining positions, and like most convertible car seats, the Marathon 70 has it’s rules: The most reclined position must be used in the rear-facing position, and when it is forward-facing, the middle and most upright positions may be used.
The body pillow for infants gives your baby more cushioning and makes the seat a better fit for little ones, and it’s easily removable when your baby grows too big to need the extra pillow support.
Ease of Installing the Britax Marathon 70 convertible:
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Using the Latch connectors, which come standard in vehicles manufactured after 2002, installing the Marathon 70 was really fast – about half a minute and done! This was tested both in the rear-facing and forward-facing positions.
Here is an informative video covering everything you need to know about installing the Marathon 70 using your car’s seat belt:
The Britax Marathon 70′s Dimensions:
- The top harness slot height measured 17″.
- Bottom harness slot height was 8.75â€³
- The depth of the side shell was 7″
- Inside shoulder width: 14â€³
- Crotch strap positions: 5â€³, 8â€³
- Crotch buckle length: 5.5″
- Internal Seating Depth (leg room and thigh support): 12â€³
- Overall height of shell (measured without raising headrest above shell): 23.5â€³
- Overall height with headrest raised: 27.5″
- Internal bottom width: 11″
- Internal shoulder width: 13″
- External seat width: 19″
- Seat weight: 19.2 lbs.
- RF Weight Range: 5-40 lbs.
- RF Height Range: <= 49 in. standing height OR 9-16.75 in. torso height
- FF Weight Range: 20-70 lbs.
- FF Height Range: <= 49 in. standing height OR 12-16.75 in. torso height
- FF Age Range: 1 year and older
- Lock-offs Provided: Has Lock-offs
- Rebound Control: Rear facing Tether
- Expiration Limit: 7 years from date of manufacture
Note that nothing was a straight line in taking these measurements, so they are somewhat subjective!
Because of the re-design of this new seat’s overall shape, it actually takes up less room in your car than the older Marathon 65. When you compare both the 65 and the 70, you’ll find that you have about two extra inches between the car seat and the driver’s seat in front of it with the new Marathon 70! This is great because tall drivers with compact cars sometimes could not fit their old Marathon 65 in the position behind the driver unless the driver’s seat was moved too far forward for this tall parent to sit comfortably. (If you do have a tall driver and small car, be sure to keep the box and receipt to ascertain that the Marathon 70 is going to be a good fit!)
Video overview of the Britax Marathon 70 car seat:
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This helpful video shows exactly how you will secure your child in the Marathon:
Safety of the Britax Marathon 70 convertible car seat:
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EPP foam is a higher grade than the older EPS foam used in older car seats, and it is less likely to crack. You’ll notice that it is black, while the old foam was white.
The Safe-Cell technology can be viewed in this photo taken from the back of the car seat, and I circled it in red. These round, hollow cells are designed to compress in case of an accident, which lowers the center-of-gravity of the seat and absorbs impact, keeping your child from absorbing much of the impact of a crash.
You can see how the SafeCell compresses in the event of a car crash in this short video:
Britax has patented their energy-absorbing Versa-Tether, which has staged-release tether webbing, anchoring the top of the seat at two points to minimize forward movement. The rubber overlays on the harness are called HUGS, which stands for Harness Ultra Guard System, and it serves to reduce forward torso movement in the unfortunate event of a crash.
Additionally, the Marathon 70 also has a feature called Side Impact Protection, which will minimize impact in case of a collision into the side of the car – which is one of the most common types of crashes.
Britax has built steel bars into all their convertibles for maximum adherence to the vehicle during a crash, which reduces a child’s forward flexing and chance of injury. You can see the steel bars clearly in this video:
Ease of strap adjustments for the Marathon 70:
One of the greatest improvements of the Marathon 70 is the way that you adjust the harness height. You’ll simply squeeze the handle at the top of the headrest and move it up or down a track. I did it with one hand, and it was a breeze. (On the other hand, I nearly broke my nail doing the same type of adjustment on the Safety 1st Alpha Omega elite car seat – that one required muscle!)
Not only do you never need to re-thread this harness for height adjustments; you also never need to access the back of the seat to make a height adjustment – which means that you don’t need to bother uninstalling and reinstalling it to change the harness height! This is an outstanding feature if you’re going to be doing carpools or using the same seat for siblings of different heights, it will save you much time and eliminate a common frustration when adjusting harness heights in other car seats!
Two crotch strap positions allow you to get more years of use out of this seat than its prior model. You will move the crotch strap to the more forward position as your baby grows.
Where can I get the Best Price for the Britax Marathon?
After lots of surfing, visiting local stores, and calling stores miles away, I found that Amazon.com beat local stores and other websites by $20 – $80 on a regular basis. However, because they are generally the cheapest, it often sells out, so if you see it in stock on Amazon grab it while it’s still available!
Note: Sometimes, when you check out this car seat on Amazon, you will not see a price, rather, Amazon will say, “Check price in cart”. So you add the item to your cart, and then you are shown the price. While this may be inconvenient, it saves you a lot of money: The manufacturer does not allow the product to be sold for less than a certain amount of money publicly. Since Amazon sells this car seat for less than the manufacturer’s allowed price, they cannot display the price until you have added the item to your shopping cart. So, that extra click of your mouse will save you a nice amount of dollars over buying the car seat in a local store or at any other website.
Customer Reviews for the Britax Marathon 70 convertible:
The legendary Britax quality continues with a solid, intuitive build. Some of the newer head protecting technology from other, more expensive Britax seats has been integrated. The new harness adjuster is amazing, making it so simple and easy to change the height of the straps. We often carpool and I’m glad I can quickly and easily customize the seat to every child. ~ from Kristen on Amazon.
Overall, this is a great quality seat that will keep your little one safe, comfortable and secure for many years. In the nearly nine years that I’ve been using Britax seats, I have found each of them to be worth the price. ~ from Karen on Amazon
Love this car seat, pretty easy to install and fits in my car well. I feel safe with my child in this seat. After HOURS of analyzing different seats and brands. This was the safest seat I could use the longest both rear and forward facing. Worth every penny! ~ from Mandy on Amazon
Washing the Britax Marathon seat cover:
One of the great advantages of the Marathon over other car seats is that you don’t need to remove the car seat from your car and then reinstall it each time you want to was the cover. Additionally, there is a simple hook and loop system that makes it simple to remove and then replace the cover on your car seat.
As cute as our babies are, we know that they will inevitably have a leaky diaper or get car sick once in a while, and the last thing a busy parent needs is a complicated system for washing the car seat upholstery! And, we certainly don’t want to have to uninstall and reinstall the entire car seat each time a sippy cup of milk spills!
This short video (just over one minute) shows you how easy it is to wash the cover of the Britax Marathon 70:
Pros and Cons of the Britax Marathon 70 car seat:
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The Marathon 70 has exceeded safety standards and is highly rated by car seat technicians, firemen, and independent consumer rating agencies.
This seat has one of the most user-friendly systems of adjusting the harness heights of all the car seats I have seen. (It can be done with just one hand!)
You will get many years out of this seat from the time your child is a baby until around first grade, since it has a high upper weight limit of 70 lbs.
The seat is large, bulky, and heavy, like all convertible car seats. If you’ll be carrying it through the airport and into rental cars on a big trip, be sure to practice weight lifting in advance!
It is pricier than some other convertible seats with similar features like the Evenflo Triumph Advance convertible car seat.
I really could not find any other cons for this terrific car seat!