Type: Convertible seat.
Limits: 5-50 lbs. rear-facing, 22-65 lbs. forward-facing. Converts to belt-positioning booster 40-100 lbs.
NHTSA ease of use rating: Not yet.
Pros: Side impact protection, no rethread harness, steel frame, works to 50 lbs. rear-facing. Premium push-button latch.
Cons: New seat without much feedback yet.
Comments: Since Safety 1st is retiring the old Alpha Omega line of all-in-one seats, the Elite EX 100 Air+ seat now takes center stage in the brand’s all-in-one line up.
For fans of extended rear-facing use, Elite EX has an impressive 50 lb. rear-facing limit, then is forward-facing with harness up to 65 lbs. Finally, it converts to a belt-positioning booster to 100 lbs.
As for side impact protection, Safety 1st adds the Air Protection + head wings to the Elite EX. Unlike Safety 1st’s entry-price seats, the Elite EX offers a steel frame, machine washable pad and no rethread harness. There is also a 10-position headrest.
As far as all-in-one seats go, the Safety 1st Elite EX 100 Air+ is probably closest in specs to the Graco Milestone. Both are similar in price.
This seat hasn’t had a lot of feedback, but what we’ve heard so far is very positive. They like the rear facing to 50 lbs., the side impact protection and the soft fabric. One complaint: the straps are hard to adjust.
So overall, the Safety 1st Elite EX 100 Air+ 3-in-1 car seat looks good. Unfortunately, the seat is no longer pictured on Safety 1st’s web site, and Safety 1st tells us it will be discontinued in the near future.