Rating: 5/5 stars
When Diono (then called Sunshine Kids) designed the Radian, they clearly thought outside the box. The Radian family of seats includes three different models (the R100, R120, and RXT) that share some rare, clever, and very useful features. They are narrow, which makes them easy to fit 3-across, even if you don’t drive a tank (as in, I’ve heard of people fitting three of them across the back of a Civic—they’re that narrow). Radians are also low-profile; the lower sides facilitate easy loading and unloading of the child, and they are particularly handy in two-door cars where space to maneuver a baby up and over the side is limited. All models of the Radian also fold flat and can be carried backpack-style or with an included shoulder strap, making them a great choice for travel (that is, if you’re pretty strong—the seat weighs in at around 30 pounds).
The RXT model provides some extras not found on the other, less expensive Radians. It has memory foam padding, head wings for extra side-impact protection, an infant insert, and a cup holder. Parents of heavier children will be attracted by the 45-pound rear-facing weight limit, 5 pounds higher than the vast majority of other convertibles. On the downside, some people—myself included—find the ratcheting harness-adjusting mechanism difficult to tighten adequately. Overall though, if you can afford the rather hefty price tag, the Radian RXT is one of the best-quality and longest-lasting convertible seats available; try it and you’re almost certain to love it.