Britax Marathon ClickTight Convertible Car Seat Review
The Britax Marathon ClickTight is a trendy choice among the many Britax car seat family members, a high-quality brand well-known for outstanding safety ratings. It is a seat with premium features at a premium price in the Euro-style. But it will last from birth until your child is ready for a booster seat. Another Britax ClickTight you can find here is Britax One4Life ClickTight, which you can also read our review here.
The Britax Marathon employs its signature ClickTight technology as a deep seat in and of itself, making installation simple. Certainly, this seat stands out among the competition, but it can be a significant investment in finance. It’s up to you whether or not it’s worth the cost weight. But we’ve broken down the details so you can quickly find out if it’s going to be your family’s best option.
What’s so special about the Britax Marathon ClickTight (CT) convertible car seat?
That’s a good question, given that the Britax lineup includes several similar named models. One of these was discontinued, the Britax G4.1 Marathon. The Britax Boulevard ClickTight and the Britax Advocate ClickTight are currently on the market. Having these confused is simple, but they have different characteristics and prices. So pay particular attention to checking the seat you’re interested in when reading online reviews.
One great thing about the CT marathon is that there are no lock-offs on the seat belt. It’s a little surprising since Britax first introduced lockoffs. But that’s what the ClickTight panel does. It closes down to lock it in place over the seat belt. Boom. It’s done.
In most situations, the CT system made the LATCH system obsolete. Watch this video before we get into the specifics to get an idea of how it works.
Key Features of the Britax Marathon CT convertible car seat
What’s the color of your favorite? From pink to blue, polka dots to a spotted cow, one of the 18 color and pattern options offered for this model can be your choice. The safety and adjustment features are also impressive. Some of these features include:
ClickTight (CT) Installation System
Deep side impact protection
Versa-Tether (energy-absorbing, staged release)
SafeCell impact-absorbing base (reduces head movement in a crash)
14 position harness
2 crotch/buckle positions
EZ Buckle System (keeps buckle forward when putting child into the seat)
7 recline positions
10 year lifespan
Made in the USA
What are the child size limits for the Britax Marathon CT convertible car seat?
While there are two crotch strap/buckle configurations on the legs of their children, some parents felt the straps were much too close. These can fit too tightly for an older or larger infant, but make sure you check the location of the crotch strap and change it if appropriate.
The rear-facing weight limit is a good 40 pounds, but at 35 pounds you will have to stop using the lower LATCH, which we will mention below again.
5 – 40 pounds rear-facing weight range
Head 1″ below top of head rest for rear-facing height max
20 – 65 pounds forward-facing weight range
49 inches forward-facing height range
How big is the Britax Marathon CT convertible car seat and will it fit in my vehicle?
If you ask a dozen parents how the seat fits in their cars, you’re likely to get a dozen different responses. This is a pretty big seat, so it all depends on the interior width of your car, where you want it to be and how you want it to be used.
It can be almost difficult to use it with a rear-facing 3-seat configuration unless you have a massive interior. Placing it rear-facing behind the seat can significantly limit front legroom for tall passengers.
There’s just one way to make sure that this seat fits. Take your back seat area measurements, including where the top of a rear-facing seat would be when the front passenger is the highest. Compare then with these specs. You can also call to see what they’re recommending to Britax.
Seat weight – 28.5 pounds
Width (widest point) – 18.5 inches
Depth (seat area) – 10.5 – 11.5 inches
Height – 23.5 inches
Harness positions – from 8.35 to 19.4 inches
How safe is the Britax Marathon CT convertible car seat?
The steel frame of the Marathon CT, while thick, is sturdy and stable. Such safety features allow a secure and reliable seat all-around: deep side impact protection, Versa-Tether and an impact-absorbing foundation for SafeCell.
The Versa-Tether is unique in having a V-shape which minimizes seat movement and stitching which slows down and decreases forward motion. It provides additional coverage in forward-facing mode against chest, neck and spine injuries.
New LATCH regulations have lowered the anchor weight limits, so if you’re still using LATCH on these seats, keep in mind that the LATCH weight limit is 35 pounds rear-facing. The seat’s rear-facing weight limit is 40 pounds, so you may have to stop using the LATCH before you turn them forward-facing.
Possible flaws: Some parents reported not being able to adjust the straps to equal tightness. Also, crumbs and other debris can accumulate in the strap release button, so this could be a safety concern if your child often eats snacks in the car.
The good news is that there are several real crash stories that prove the Marathon CT can protect your child in an accident. One family experienced a 70 mph impact into a tree, and their 13-month old son was just fine.
How easy is the Britax Marathon CT convertible car seat to install?
This could be one of the easiest seats to mount on the market thanks to the design of the seat belt by ClickTight. Many parents had trouble getting the seat belt close enough or they thought it was too hard to turn the CT release button.
Nevertheless, most parents had no deployment problems. All it takes is to push and then turn one button to raise the seat plate, then through the primary belt route you loop the seat belt. Make sure that the slack is taken out of the lap belt and that both straps lie flat, then close the door. Try to remove more slack from the seat belt if the seat shifts around more than one inch on either side.
Possible flaws: Some parents reported the seat padding became loose after uninstalling and reinstalling the seat. The filling got in the way so it was more difficult to close the CT seat panel. Other parents said the recline handle jammed so they couldn’t get the seat to recline properly.
ο Tons of safety features built in ο 18 colors/patterns to choose from ο Easy installation with CT system ο Made in the USA ο No rear LATCH install needed ο Good for extended rear-facing (weight limit 40 lbs) ο 14 position harness ο 7 recline positions
× Rebound bar doesn’t come with the car seat × Crotch straps may be too short × Questionable as to whether it will fit well in most vehicles × Crumbs may accumulate in CT release button × Harness straps may not adjust to equal tightness × Seat padding may loosen and interfere with closing CT panel × Recline handle may get jammed
The Britax Marathon ClickTight is an excellent choice if safety is your primary concern. Working in real crash situations has been proven, not just in a lab, which we believe holds a lot more weight.
It’s the cheapest of its cousins, the Boulevard and Advocate as far as price is concerned, but it’s still a pretty significant investment. Whether it will fit well in most vehicles is the most questionable concern for us. Studies on this vary widely. So we strongly recommend that you check the dimensions of your back seat before you purchase or call Britax to see if your vehicle is compatible.
For only a small percentage of parents, installation proved difficult, so the Marathon CT ranks pretty high on our user-friendly scale. The ClickTight system makes the installation of the seat belt a breeze and works well without a LATCH rear. That alone ought to make the parents happy.
All in all, we find the convertible car seat Britax Marathon ClickTight to be an excellent option for your daughter. The investment is worthwhile, while individual seats and experiences can differ, of course. Please check any aspect of a car seat carefully before using it. Call Britax instantly if anything doesn’t work at all. If they are not made aware of them, they can not resolve chronic issues.