The new Britax Frontier vs Graco Nautilus, two great booster car seats. Each has awesome comfort features, top-of-the-line safety, and the ability to grow with your child. But when it comes to the Graco Nautilus vs Britax Frontier, which one is better?
Our overall winner is the Britax Grow With You ClickTight which is the new Britax Frontier, but we will dive into which seat comes out on top feature by feature. Let’s find out.
In our Britax Frontier vs Graco Nautilus review, we will cover the specs and features of each of these seats. Here is a brief overview to familiarize you with each car seat.
Britax Grow With You ClickTight
The Britax Grow With You ClickTight was previously referred to as the Britax Frontier, and it is nearly the same seat aside from color differences. It is a combination seat that transitions from a forward-facing harness seat to a belt positioning booster. It has a handful of great features and is praised for its safety and ease of installation.
Weight Minimums and Maximums: 25lbs to 120lbs
Modes: forward-facing harness seat & belt-positioning booster
Product Weight: 27lbs
- Steel frame
- ClickTight effortless installation
- Moisture-wicking cool fabrics
- Slim design
- Headrest prone to squeaking
- Fabric is not machine washable
- TRUSTED QUALITY, UPGRADED DESIGN: Looking for Frontier? Grow With You ClickTight is our newest harness-to-booster car seat
- 2 IN 1 BOOSTER SEAT: Easily transitions from forward-facing harness mode to belt-positioning booster mode as your child grows from toddler to big kid
- COOL N DRY MESH FABRIC: improves air flow for a cooler ride; wicks away moisture to help keep your child dry
Graco Nautilus 65 LX
The Graco Nautilus 65 LX is also a booster car seat, but it has three modes. It can convert from a forward-facing harness seat to a high back belt-positioning booster, to a backless booster. It has many awesome comfort features and ease of use offering parents will love.
Weight Minimums and Maximums: 22lbs to 120lbs
Modes: forward-facing harness seat, high back belt-positioning booster, and backless booster
Product Weight: 21.8lbs
- 3 modes
- Removable and washable seat cover
- Headrest and harness adjust together
- Steel reinforced frame
- Difficult to install
- The bottom buckle is hard to adjust
- Integrated harness storage compartment holds unused harness straps while in the belt positioning booster mode
- One-hand, 5-position adjustable headrest is easy to use and adapts for your growing child
- Keeps your child in a booster up to 120 pounds for longevity of use, in keeping with American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendations
Ease of Installation & Use
The Britax Grow With You ClickTight car seat can be installed either using LATCH or the seatbelt. The LATCH connectors feature quick push so all you need to do is press them against the anchors and wait until you hear the click. They stay locked in place until you press the one-touch release button.
However, Britax recommends that the LATCH system only be used until your child is 40 pounds. When your child weighs 40 pounds or more, seat belt installation is recommended.
Seat belt installation is just as effortless. The ClickTight system lets you achieve a secure install in just a few minutes.
All you need to do is place the car seat in the vehicle, route the seat belt through the ClickTight compartment, and buckle it. Then close the ClickTight compartment so that you hear a click and remove the slack from the seat belt. This install is effortless and extremely secure.
Besides installation, using the seat is straightforward. Its two-position recline is very easy to adjust. The headrest and harness adjust together as one, so making adjustments to the seat as your child grows is a breeze.
Overall, this seat is very parent-friendly, and traveling with it or switching vehicles is not a hassle.
The Graco Nautilus 65 allows for LATCH installation or seat belt installation as well. Graco recommends that their LATCH system be used with children weighing under 48 pounds.
The LATCH system is pretty standard. It connects to the anchors with a simple push and then remains attached until you press the release button. However, some parents do find it difficult to tighten this seat down securely enough.
The seat belt installation uses a clearly marked belt path, like most other car seats. It does not have a ClickTight compartment like the Britax so you must make sure the belt is secure and without slack. Again, some parents note that they can never quite get this seat tight enough. If you recline the seat at all, getting a secure install becomes even more difficult.
Despite its standard installation, Graco does have some awesome ease of use features. Integrated harness storage keeps the harness straps safely out of the way when you transition to belt position booster mode.
You won’t have to worry about removing them from the seat and then misplacing them. It’s one hand headrest adjusts with the straps, which is convenient for parents. Also, the included harness buckle storage is a nice extra feature that holds the straps away while you are getting your child in and out.
Verdict: The winner of the installation category for our Britax Grow with You ClickTight vs Graco Nautilus 65 LX review? The Britax. The LATCH is easy to use but the ClickTight seat belt installation is amazingly simple and unmatched by the Graco.
Weight & Height limits
Checking out Graco vs Britax weight limits? They are pretty similar.
The Britax accommodates children from 25 pounds to 120 pounds. It can be used as a forward-facing harness car seat when your child weighs 25 pounds all the way up to 65 pounds.
The 65-pound limit is pretty standard for a forward-facing car seat, and it allows your child to use the harness longer, which is excellent for safety. They can then use the booster mode up to 120 pounds. The harness extends up to 49 inches and the seat can be used in booster mode with a height of up to 62 inches.
The Graco has a very comparable 22 pounds to 120 pounds weight range. In harness mode, the seat can accommodate a child weighing 22 pounds to 65 pounds. 65 is pretty standard for harnessed forward-facing car seats.
A child weighing 40 pounds to 100 pounds can use the seat as a highback booster. And a child weighing 40 pounds to 120 pounds can use it as a backless booster. The harness extends up to 49 inches, and your child must be 38 inches to use the high back booster mode or 40 inches tall to use it as a backless booster.
Verdict: The winner for this round is the Graco, it is very comparable to the Britax, but it has an extra few pounds on the lower weight limit. Additionally, the weight and height limits each of its three positions accommodates allow your child to remain in the safest position for as long as possible.
Car Seat Weight
Though the Britax has a very slim design, it weighs 27 pounds. This is largely due to its steel frame. The Graco weighs just under 22 pounds at 21.8. It has a steel-reinforced frame that isn’t as heavy.
Verdict: If you are looking for the lightest seat when it comes to the Britax vs Graco, the Graco is the winner of this match-up.
Seating Mode & Recline
The Britax has two different modes, harnessed forward-facing, and high back belt-positioning booster. As mentioned, this suits kids weighing 25 to 120 pounds.
It also offers two different recline positions, allowing you to get the most comfortable fit for your little one. The Britax headrest and harness can be adjusted to nine different positions, making it a seat that truly grows with your child.
The Graco is also suitable for children weighing up to 120 pounds, but it has three modes. It converts from a harnessed forward-facing seat to a high back booster, and finally to a backless booster. It has three positions of recline, though the angle doesn’t vary much in between each. The headrest and harness can be adjusted to one of 5 different positions.
Verdict: Although Britax’s nine-position headrest is awesome, the fact that the Graco has three different modes makes it the clear winner.
The Britax seat is constructed with Cool n Dry mesh fabric. This high-performance fabric is great at wicking away moisture, allowing for ventilation, and keeping your kid cool. It is available in 13 different colors.
The seat also includes a slightly padded support to help keep children comfortable. Its only downfall is that it is not machine washable; it is hand clean only. Though it is easily removable to help facilitate this.
The Graco car seat uses standard polypropylene fabrics which are quite durable. They may not be as cooling as the Britax but they are machine washable and dryer safe. This is a huge convenience for parents. This even includes the body support pillow, which adds just enough plush padding to the seat. The seat is predominantly available in just one color as other colors can be difficult to find.
Verdict: While this one was a tough call, the Britax car seat fabrics won out. No one, especially children, likes being hot and sweaty in the car. The Britax durable and cooling fabrics help keep your kid comfy.
Britax truly excels at safety. Their high-strength steel frame helps to reinforce the seat structure and stabilize it in the case of an accident. SafeCell technology, which has a honeycomb design, crumples to absorb impact in an accident.
Two layers of side impact protection on the upper part of the seat help keep both your child’s head and neck extra safe. Its V-shaped tether, found on the back upper part of the seat, is designed to slow and reduce movement of the seat in a car crash.
These construction safety features combined with its ClickTight installation and adjustable harness system make this seat exceptionally safe.
The Graco car seat has a steel-reinforced frame, so pieces of plastic are reinforced with steel. It has been rigorously tested, including side-impact tested. The seat includes TrueShield Technology, which is integrated side impact protection added to the sides of the seat from the head to the hips. The EPS foam construction also helps to absorb energy from and impact.
Finally, this seat was made to withstand the high temperatures that a car can experience in the summer. Unfortunately, there have been some complaints about the buckles warping in extreme heat.
Verdict: Britax is the winner here hands down. The company always prioritizes safety and this seat is no exception.
As these are booster car seats, neither one is compatible with any stroller. They are attached to their bases, meaning they cannot be used with a stroller.
Verdict: It’s a tie for both.
Ease of Cleaning
The Britax seat has an easily removable car seat cover. Unfortunately, that is where the ease of cleaning ends. The seat is hand wash only and the straps are spot clean only. Their SafeWash collection of fabrics is considered an upgrade.
Graco on the other hand takes the cake in this Britax vs Graco car seat category. All components of this seat are machine washable. That means the seat pad, body support pillow, harness, and buckle covers.
The harness straps themselves are spot clean only. Everything else can be tossed in your washing machine for effortless clean-up.
Verdict: The Graco definitely wins here. Kids are messy, no matter how old they are. Easily removable and machine washable seat covers are a godsend.
Cupholders & Snack Storage
The Britax has two cup holders and snack storage placed under the armrests of the seat. The cup holders are quite large and fit nearly any sized water bottle. Unfortunately, the cup holders and snack storage are not removable to be washed.
The Graco also has snack storage in the form of a cubby on each armrest. Unlike the Britax, it only has one cup holder, which is quite narrow and won’t fill all cup sizes. Neither the snack storage nor the cupholder is removable for cleaning.
Verdict: The Britax wins this round as it offers two cup holders of considerable size in addition to snack storage.
Britax Frontier vs Graco Nautilus Review Summary
Britax Frontier vs Graco Nautilus Review FAQs
Which is the better booster seat, the Britax Frontier or Graco Nautilus?
If you are looking solely for a booster seat, the better choice may be the Graco Nautilus. This is because it has two different booster modes, high back booster or backless booster.
Is the Britax car seat safer than Graco?
It is hard to definitively answer if one seat is safer than the other, however, the Britax does have more safety features.
Is Britax Frontier discontinued?
The Britax Frontier was discontinued by Britax in favor of the Grow With You ClickTight seat. This seat is almost the same except for color differences.
What are the alternatives to the Britax Grow With You ClickTight & Graco Nautilus 65 LX car seats?
There are a variety of other booster seats on the market.
- The Chicco MyFit Harness + Booster Car Seat converts from a forward-facing harness seat to a belt positioning booster. It is suitable for kids weighing 25 to 100 pounds and has a multitude of adjustments to keep them safe and cozy at each stage.
- The Diono Radian 3R is a 3 in 1 car seat, transitioning from rear-facing to forward-facing harness and finally to a belt-positioning high back booster. It can be used from birth to 120 pounds. It has a sturdy design and a slim frame to accommodate vehicles that are tight on space.
There you have it, a complete breakdown of all the features and details for Graco vs Britax car seat.
If you place a high value on safety and want a car seat that is simple to use, the Britax Grow With You ClickTight is the seat for you. Its top features in these two categories are:
- Steel reinforced frame
- Unique Y shaped tether
- Impact-absorbing SafeCell technology
- ClickTight effortless installation
If you are looking for a seat that truly grows with your child, from forward-facing harness to backless booster, then you may prefer the Graco Nautilus 65 LX. This seat has three modes, a handful of recline options, and various headrest/harness positions. It is sure to keep your child safe and comfortable no matter their age or stage.
- Converts from forward-facing to highback booster to a backless booster
- One hand no-rethread harness and headrest adjustments with 5 positions
- 3 recline options
- Removable and machine washable seat cover
What’s your favorite pick – is it the Britax or the Graco seat? Tell us in the comments!
Last update on 2021-04-08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API