Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Review

Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Review

Every baby needs a good car seat, one that is comfortable, easy to use, and safe. Sometimes it’s hard to find the full package in one product, but after the Graco SnugRide 35 Elite review, it is just that: everything you want and more.

Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Review

It scores almost full mark in our Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Review

​The Graco SnugRide 35 Elite (Source: Graco Baby)

If it’s made by Graco, you know it’s good. Graco has been trusted by parents for years thanks to their commitment to quality, comfort, and safety.

Not only is the SnugRide 35 Elite affordable, but it has gone through rigorous safety testing, comes with an easy to install base with level indicator, adjusts to 4 reclining positions, has a full-coverage canopy, and has a Simply Safe Adjust harness. It is also compatible with any Graco Click Connect Stroller.

PROS

  • Easy to clean with the Rapid-Remove Cover
  • check
    Safe: side-impact tested, Safety Core absorbs frontal crash, and meets US FMVSS 213 standards
  • Simply Safe Adjust Harness adjusts both the harness and headrest together
  • Compatible with all Click Connect Strollers
  • check
    Adjustable base with 4 positions and bubble level indicator

CONS:

  • Heavy: 9.6 pounds without the base attached or a child inside
  • Can’t adjust handle w/ canopy up
  • Support cushions create a tight fit

Features & Benefits

☑️Safety Core and Crash Tested

The Graco SnugRide Elite has been crash tested to ensure safety (Source: Baby Gear Lab)

​The Graco SnugRide Elite has been crash tested to ensure safety (Source: Baby Gear Lab)

The Graco SnugRide 35 Elite is one of the top safety-recommended car seat models. It has been specially engineered and tested to meet US standard FMVSS 213 for child safety restraints.

The Safety Core seat absorbs the impact force a frontal crash, and the car seat has also been rear- and side-impact tested to ensure optimum safety in the event of a crash.

☑️SnugLock Installation

The 3-step SnugLock ensures an error-free, tight fit every time (Source: Target)

​The 3-step SnugLock ensures an error-free, tight fit every time (Source: Target)

The SnugRide Elite is one of the easiest to install thanks to the special SnugLock base feature. No more fussing with the LATCH system in your car. Instead, you can use this 3-step system to lock the base securely in place with just the car’s seat belt.

If you do prefer to use your car’s LATCH system, the SnugRide base is equipped for that as well.

☑️Simply Safe Adjust Harness

Graco’s Simply Safe Adjust Harness adjusts the headrest and harness together (Source: Toys R Us)

​Graco’s Simply Safe Adjust Harness adjusts the headrest and harness together (Source: Toys R Us)

Rethreading car seat harness straps can be a pain as your child grows, and Graco had this in mind when they designed the Simply Safe Adjust Harness.

With a simple one-step adjustment, the harness and headrest adjust together, eliminating the need to ever rethread the straps.

In addition, the harness tightens with the pull of a strap just like any other car seat.

☑️Adjustable Base

The adjustable Click Connect base gives you 4 recline position settings to choose from (Source: Baby Gear Lab)

​The adjustable Click Connect base gives you 4 recline position settings to choose from (Source: Baby Gear Lab)

With the adjustable base, you have 4 recline options to choose from to keep your baby comfortable and safe.

The base also has a bubble level indicator which helps you know that your car seat is leveled and installed properly.

☑️Child Capacity

The SnugRide Elite is suitable for your baby up to 35 pounds and 32” (Source: Baby Earth)

​The SnugRide Elite is suitable for your baby up to 35 pounds and 32” (Source: Baby Earth)

This car seat can be used from birth (4 pounds) with the infant insert that is included. This will give the seat a snug fit and keep your baby’s head stabilized and safe.

It can only be used rear facing, but it should be able to fit your little one until they are about 35 pounds and 32” tall (somewhere between ages 2 and 3). Thanks to the multiple recline positions, you can be sure that your baby will be comfortable as they grow.

☑️Rapid-Remove Cover

Graco’s Rapid-Remove cover makes cleaning out crumbs an easy job (Source: eBay)

​Graco’s Rapid-Remove cover makes cleaning out crumbs an easy job (Source: eBay)

Car seats are notorious for collecting crumbs, and with the deeps seat, it can be nearly impossible to clean them out.

With the Graco SnugRIde Elite, you get the Rapid-Remove cover that comes off easily to make cleaning so much easier. The best part is that you can machine wash the cover; just be sure to drip dry rather than throw it in the dryer.

☑️Rotating Canopy

Full-coverage canopy on the SnugRide Elite keeps baby protected from the sun and prying eyes (Source: CARiD)

​Full-coverage canopy on the SnugRide Elite keeps baby protected from the sun and prying eyes (Source: CARiD)

This car seat has one of the largest canopies on the market. It covers nearly the entire car seat, leaving only little feet visible, which keeps your baby protected from both the sun and prying eyes.

☑️Stroller Compatibility

The SnugRide Elite is compatible with any Click Connect stroller (Source: Lucie's List)

​​The SnugRide Elite is compatible with any Click Connect stroller (Source: Lucie's List)

To get the most out of your car seat, you will want a compatible stroller. Luckily this car seat works with any Graco Click Connect stroller as well as a number of other brands that offer a Graco compatible conversion kit.

What Others are Saying

I don’t expect you to choose this car seat based on my word alone, so I searched the internet for reviews and found them overwhelmingly positive. If you do need more proof of this car seat’s positive features, be sure to read the reviews below.

Amazon:

"​Love this seat. It fits tiny babies really snug, and the install is easy and gives you a sense of security. Usually my husband struggles to install the base, and I end up having to double check it’s in tight enough, but he did this one without any issues."

​"An easy to use seat, clicks securely into the base and just as easy to remove once you get the hang of it. The straps are simple to adjust, and baby looks comfortable and secure in it. I trust Graco!"

"​We have been extremely happy with this car seat. With the baby coming two weeks early, having the added head protection eased a lot of stress that I had. Being able to move that up as he grows, is very easy as well ... I would recommend for sure!"

"​My cousin just had a baby 3 weeks ago and she swears by this car seat that it is the best that money can buy. She absolutely raved about how easy it was to install and the fact that the shade went all the way over to protect her little man from the sun."

Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Alternatives

Preview
#Our Pick
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Oakley
Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
Title
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Oakley
Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
Child Capacity
​4-35 lbs
4-35 lbs
​4-30 lbs
​4-11 lbs (w/ insert); up to 35 lbs
​Car Seat Weight
9.6 lbs
​9.3 lbs
​Around 11 lbs
​11.5 lbs
Installation
​SnugLock or LATCH
LATCH system
SuperCinch tightener for LATCH system
​Safe Center LATCH or seat belt lock-offs
​Safety Features
​Safety Core (absorbs frontal crash)
​Gcell HX racecar foam, Air Protect for side impact
​Energy-absorbing EPS foam
​2 layers of side protection, steel frame, SafeCell impact technology
Prime
-
Price
$149.98
$159.99
$199.99
$189.99
#Our Pick
Preview
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Oakley
Title
Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Oakley
Child Capacity
​4-35 lbs
​Car Seat Weight
9.6 lbs
Installation
​SnugLock or LATCH
​Safety Features
​Safety Core (absorbs frontal crash)
Prime
Price
$149.98
Buy on Amazon
Preview
Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
Title
Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
Child Capacity
4-35 lbs
​Car Seat Weight
​9.3 lbs
Installation
LATCH system
​Safety Features
​Gcell HX racecar foam, Air Protect for side impact
Prime
-
Price
$159.99
Buy on Amazon
Preview
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
Title
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
Child Capacity
​4-30 lbs
​Car Seat Weight
​Around 11 lbs
Installation
SuperCinch tightener for LATCH system
​Safety Features
​Energy-absorbing EPS foam
Prime
Price
$199.99
Buy on Amazon
Preview
Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
Title
Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
Child Capacity
​4-11 lbs (w/ insert); up to 35 lbs
​Car Seat Weight
​11.5 lbs
Installation
​Safe Center LATCH or seat belt lock-offs
​Safety Features
​2 layers of side protection, steel frame, SafeCell impact technology
Prime
Price
$189.99
Buy on Amazon

1

Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360

Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
50 Reviews
Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat, Raven HX
  • REAR-FACING CAR SEAT FOR BABIES 4-35 POUNDS - The Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air 360 Infant Car Seat is great for growing babies. It comfortably carries infants and can be used all the way up to 35 pounds.
  • SUPERIOR SIDE IMPACT PROTECTION - Designed by car seat safety experts, the patented Air Protect advanced cushioning system provides superior protection around your child's head.
  • 360 PROTECT FOR 5 LAYERS OF SAFETY - Air Protect, GCell HX patented race car foam absorbs crash energy, Reinforced handle adds stability, Deep seat structure shields child, Soft foam throughout for additional safety and comfort.

The Safety 1st Onboard 35 Air 360 is one of the most comparable car seats to the Graco SnugRide 35 Elite. They are similar in design, price, child capacity, and weight, and both have been thoroughly tested for any type of crash that may occur (front, rear, side, and rollover).

You can tell just by looking at the photo that there is plenty of cushion inside to keep your baby comfortable and the car seat is reinforced with GCell HX racecar foam to keep them safe. The cover and padded inserts are also removable and machine-washable.

Overall, the reviews are positive, but the main complains are that compatible strollers are not as widely available as the Graco and the canopy doesn’t stay in place when it is open.

PROS

  • Suitable for a child 4-35 pounds
  • check
    Tested for front, rear, side, and rollover accidents
  • Cover is removable, machine-washable, and dryer-safe

CONS:

  • Canopy doesn’t stay in place when open
  • Only compatible with most Safety 1st and Cosco stroller models

2

Chicco KeyFit 30

Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
251 Reviews
Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Car Seat, Papyrus
  • Seat interior lined with EPS energy-absorbing foam for improved impact protection
  • Infant insert for smaller babies from 4-11 lbs
  • 5-point harness with one-pull tightened

The Chicco KeyFit 30 is currently the #1 rated car seat on the market, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best fit for everyone.

It does have some great safety features, including the SuperCinch tightener, which ensures a tight LATCH fit with the pull of a single strap. It is also made with energy-absorbing EPS foam to keep your baby safe in the event of a crash.

There is a multi-position canopy, but it does not have nearly the amount of coverage that the SnugRide Elite has. The car seat itself is also a bit heavier (estimating between 10-12 pounds based on the total weight minus the base) and only handles up to 30 pounds of baby weight.

PROS

  • Suitable for babies 4-30 pounds
  • check
    SuperCinch tightener ensures a secure LATCH
  • Seat pat is machine-washable; drip dry only
  • check
    Spring-loaded leveling foot and bubble level indicator lets you know that you’ve installed the base correctly

CONS:

  • Car seat is quite heavy

3

Britax B-Safe 35 Elite

Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
88 Reviews
Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat, Vibe
  • Surrounded in safety: 2 layers of side impact protection, quick-adjust head protection, steel frame, and impact absorbing base
  • Easy installation: Use Safe Center LATCH or built-in seat belt lock-offs to secure the infant car seat
  • No rethreading, ever: Quick-adjust harness, 2-position buckle for a comfortable fit as your child grows

If you are looking for the Cadillac of car seats that will fit the Cadillac of strollers (the BOB), then you want the Britax B-Safe 35 Elite.

Just by looking at this car seat, you can tell that it’s made well, with a steel frame, 2 layers of side impact protection, SafeCell impact technology, and an impact-absorbing base to keep your baby safe and secure.

It is travel-system ready, able to fit most Britax and BOB strollers, and like the SnugRide Elite, there is no need to rethread the straps as your baby grows thanks to the adjustable headrest.

It is very narrow, taking up very little space in the car, but it is still pretty heavy (11.5 pounds) most likely due to the steel frame. Being narrow also means that your baby may outgrow it before they even reach 35 pounds.

PROS

  • Premium safety features: steel frame, dual-layer side protection, SafeCell impact technology, impact-absorbing base
  • check
    Made in the USA
  • Takes up little space in the car
  • check
    Suitable for babies 4-35 pounds

CONS:

  • Heavy: 11.5 pounds
  • Baby may outgrow the narrow seat before they reach 35 pounds

Conclusion

If you are looking for a safe, comfortable, and reliable car seat, Graco could be your good choice considering after we have did the  Graco SnugRide 35 Elite Review. It is easy to install, ensuring a secure fit every time (no matter who installs it), and it has been engineered to meet or exceed US child seat safety regulations.

Compared to other car seats, it is relatively lightweight (though it will still be heavy with a baby inside) and it is compatible with many travel-system strollers, including all Graco Click Connect models. You can rest assured knowing that you will have no problem taking your baby anywhere with you.

For more details on this great car seat, be sure to check it out!

Last update on 2018-08-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *