If you’re looking for advanced safety features combined with a great looking car seat that’s easy to install in a compact car, the clek foonf should be a top contender. Similar to a car, the foonf has crumple zones that deform to absorb collision impact and significantly diminish the effect on your child. Its design also allows for longer rear-facing usage, which is highly regarded as the safer position for convertible car seats. Other safety features include an anti-rebound bar and a very solid frame, so you can rest easy when using this seat. Just note that the solid construction of steel and magnesium also adds heft, so don’t plan on moving this seat around much once it’s installed.
The foonf stands out with modern design, sophisticated colors and even Paul Frank patterns. The one I have is in lime green against a white frame, and our neighbors definitely noticed our beautiful new car seat. You’re sure to get comments as it looks dramatically different from all the standard colors, patterns and designs currently on the market.
The foonf’s rigid LATCH system greatly simplifies front-facing installations, letting you simply snap the car seat right into your car without having to struggle with straps and buckles. Given the importance of correctly installing the car seat, this is a huge plus. Should your car not have the LATCH system, the car seat’s LATCH connectors can be pulled into the unit and out of the way, and the seat can also be installed using your seat belt. For front facing mode, you’ll also have to use a top anchor to fully secure the seat.
The foonf is narrow (under 17”), ideal for those hoping to accommodate multiple car seats or additional passengers in their back seat. In rear-facing mode, it also takes up less space (33”) front-to-back with a wedge base that provides a level of recline without encroaching on your front seats. The wedge adds height, however, so prepare to lift your child higher to get her in and out of the car. Even without the wedge, the seat does sit higher than most, which has been a plus for my 2-year old daughter who really loves that she can see more from this higher vantage point. I’ve also found that this seat is really comfortable for her. Even with what seems like less padding than some seats, she is very happy in it for long car rides, and her head stays in place without flopping forward when she falls asleep – a huge benefit for sounder naps!
While the foonf’s seat does not include a removable cover that can be machine washed, it does consist of a fabric that resists stains, moisture and odors, making it easy to clean. Another plus is that the entire car seat can be recycled through clek for a small fee, so you can feel better about making yet another large gear purchase. One thing to note is that a child must be able to sit upright to use this seat, so another seat will be needed for baby’s first months.
• great safety features including crumples zones, an anti-rebound bar, a steel and magnesium frame and longer rear-facing usage
• easy installation with a unique rigid LATCH system
• comes in great colors and patterns
• one of the narrower seats I’ve seen, which is great for accommodating more in your backseat
• magnets to hold straps out of the way to make it easier to load your chid into the seat
• entire seat is recyclable
• height may be an issue as you need to lift your child higher to get her in and out of the seat, especially in rear-facing mode when the wedge is in place
• no removable, machine-washable cover, but material wipes clean easily
• a bit difficult to get to strap release lever
• requires child be able to sit upright by herself so cannot be used as baby’s first carseat
• on the heavier side, but not a problem as long as you don’t plan on moving it around much
Overall, I couldn’t be happier with the clek foonf. This is a great car seat for the older child who can sit up by herself and can be used both rear and forward-facing. It’s a bit pricy at $489.99 on Amazon, but for the safety features and the ability to fit well in my small Honda, this seat is well worth it.