Britax Marathon G4.1 Review: Making the Parenting Marathon Easier?
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Britax Marathon G4.1 Review: Making the Parenting Marathon Easier?

  • Last Updated: December 11, 2017

Let’s face it, being a parent is like running a never ending marathon. You zip here, zoom there, and try catching your breath with a quick coffee pitstop. If you are like most parents, you are trying to do a million things at once while keeping your kids alive and well. You shouldn’t have to worry about a car seat.

The Britax Marathon G4.1 car seat has a boatload of safety features that will make you feel all warm and fuzzy. In fact, that is probably the most defining feature of this car seat. The Britax Marathon G4.1 does also have all of those extra features that will make your life that much easier. Let the marathon proceed.

Why Buy The Britax Marathon G4.1

The Britax Marathon G4.1 has so many beautiful features that make it a real winner of a car seat. Between the Safe Cell technology and easy installation, it will have you out the door in a jiffy while keeping your kid safe and sound. Isn’t that what you are looking for in a car seat anyways?

Let’s talk price. I would say this is a mid range priced seat. It isn’t off the charts but it isn’t tight budget friendly either. A lot of that comes from the extra safety technology and features they have in place like the extra side impact protection.

Safety should be at the top of your list and the Britax Marathon G4.1 delivers. The Safe Cell side impact protection is an extra feature that will have you feeling relaxed about your ride. The G4.1 also has an impact absorbing base. That’s really important in the event of a crash so that less force is transferred to your child. Finally, this solid car seat has a steel integrated frame. That means if you do get in a crash, it’s going to hold it’s own and keep your child in a cocoon of safety.

It also has features that make it just plain comfortable for your kid while keeping it easy adults to use. The 10 position, quick adjust harness ensures the right fit for your child no matter their height. I really like this feature because the idea that one size fits all is incredibly frustrating. On the same note, the G4.1 has two buckle positions to accommodate for different sized children. Both of these features keeps your kid comfortable and safe while it lets you keep your sanity.

Finally, the Britax Marathon G4.1 just has some plain awesome reviews. There are five stars all over the place. Parents are genuinely happy with their choice because of what we mentioned before: safety, comfort, and convenience. It shouldn’t surprise you that Britax put out another phenomenal car seat, it is what they do.

Pros and Cons

PROS:

  • 18.5 inches wide to fit in vehicles easily
  • Breathable and comfortable fabric for your child
  • Safe Cell Technology
  • Integrated Steel Frame
  • Rear facing up to 40 pounds
  • Max weight capacity 65 pounds
  • Easy to install
  • 10 position easy to use harness
  • High quality

CONS:

  • A little bit expensive
  • Not highest weight capacity for rear facing
  • No booster capability
  • Non-machine washable cover
  • No Clicktight Technology

Specifications: Weight, Dimensions, and Height & Weight Limits

The Britax Marathon G4.1 is a whopping 19.5 pounds. I like that it’s not too heavy or too light. Either end of the spectrum can cause issues. It’s dimensions are as follows: 29.5 x 19 x 18.2 inches. It’s fairly large but compact enough to fit in your vehicle without too much of an issue.

Rear facing, the Britax Marathon G4.1 accommodates kiddos from 5 to 40 pounds and 49 inches in height. Forward facing, this car seat’s weight range runs from 20 to 65 pounds and tops out at 17.5 inches in height.

I like that it is a convertible car seat with a large weight and height range. The more you can keep your child rear facing and in a car seat, the safer they are going to be. The G4.1 allows for that and makes it easy to follow these safety precautions.

Safety Rating

Like I mentioned before, safety is probably your first priority in a car seat. In saying that, the Britax Marathon G4.1 has excellent safety ratings. In fact, it scores very high across the board. Not only does it meet federal regulations for car seat safety, it exceeds them.

The Safe Cell technology, steel integrated frame, V tether, and impact absorbing base combine to make an incredibly safe car seat, if not one of the safest on the markets. A lot of parents chose the Britax brand because of safety and the G4.1 is no exception.

Have there been any recalls?

There have not been any recalls on the Britax Marathon G4.1. I must stress it is important to register your car seat when you get it. That way, if there is a recall, you will be notified immediately.

How does it compare to other car seats

The Britax Marathon G4.1 is a quality seat, that’s for sure. However, it’s not the perfect car seat for everyone. Let’s compare it to its top competitors to make sure it’s the correct seat for you and your family.

Britax Marathon G4.1 vs Clicktight

Both by Britax and both excellent choices. There are only a few differences between these two seats. I will say I think that the Clicktight has an upper hand. However, if you want to pay less, the G4.1 is your seat.

Britax Marathon G4.1

  • Less expensive
  • 5 to 40 pounds rear-facing
  • 20 to 65 pounds forward facing
  • Safe cell technology
  • No Clicktight installation system
  • Rear view seated shoulder height range from 9-16.75 inches

Clicktight

  • More expensive
  • 5 to 40 pounds rear-facing
  • 20 to 65 pounds forward facing
  • Safe cell technology
  • Clicktight installation system
  • Rear view seated shoulder height range from 7.6-16.95 inches
  • 7 position recline with automatic level indicator

Britax Marathon G4.1 vs Graco Extend2fit

While both convertible car seats, I believe the Britax is more user friendly and has better safety standards. The Graco Extend2fit does have good safety results, but Britax takes it above and beyond with the Safe Cell technology. If I had to choose between the two, I would go for the G4.1.

Britax Marathon G4.1

  • More expensive
  • 65 pound max weight capacity
  • 5 pound minimum rear facing
  • Rear facing max limit 40 pounds
  • Safe Cell Technology
  • LATCH installation

Graco Extend2fit

  • Less expensive
  • 65 pound max weight capacity
  • 4 pound minimum rear facing
  • Rear facing max limit 50 pounds
  • LATCH installation

Britax Marathon G4.1 vs Graco 4ever

These are two really high quality car seats so it is hard to choose a winner. When compared side by side, you are going to get more bang for your buck with the Graco 4ever. However, I would argue that the Britax Marathon G4.1 has better safety features with a more quality look and feel.

Britax Marathon G4.1

  • 5 pound rear facing minimum
  • More expensive
  • Forward facing height limit 49 inches
  • No booster capability
  • 18.5 inches wide
  • Breathable covers

Graco 4ever

  • 4 pound rear facing minimum
  • Less Expensive
  • Forward facing height limit 52 inches
  • Booster seat capability
  • 20 inches wide
  • Machine washable cover
  • Dark covers not breathable fabric

Front Facing Installation

LATCH Installation

  • Remove LATCH connectors from storage space and pass them through their appropriate belt slots.
  • Press and hold the LATCH adjustor on one LATCH to lengthen. Repeat to the other LATCH adjustor.
  • Remove the tether from it’s pouch and place it over the child seat back.
  • Place the car seat forward facing on the vehicle seat.
  • Making sure your LATCH strap is not twisted, attach the LATCH strap to its adjacent anchor in an upright position.
  • You will hear a click. If you do not, try again.
  • Attach the other LATCH connector to its adjacent anchor in an upright position.
  • You will hear a click. If you do not, try again.
  • Push the car seat into the vehicle seat firmly.
  • At the same time, tighten each LATCH strap securely.
  • Attach the tether to the designated anchor and pull tight.
  • Make sure your car seat is secured by wiggling both side to side and up and down. It should not move.

Seat Belt Installation

  • Store the LATCH adjustors in the storage space.
  • Remove the tether from its pouch and put over the back of the car seat.
  • Put the car seat on the vehicle seat forward facing.
  • Make sure the whole base is touching the vehicle seat.
  • Move the lock off lever to open the forward facing lock off farthest from where you will buckle the seat belt.
  • Pull the vehicle belt out and then over the LATCH bar to the opposite side.
  • Double check that the seat belt is not twisted anywhere.
  • Once satisfied, make sure it is over the LATCH bar and then buckle the seat belt.
  • Push the car seat firmly into the vehicle seat.
  • At the same time, remove the slack from the lap part of the belt, then the shoulder part of the belt.
  • Hold the shoulder part of the seat belt firmly and then turn the lock off until the seat belt is secured.
  • Attach the tether to its designated anchor and tighten.
  • Make sure that the seat belt is tight and the car seat is secure by wiggling both side to side and front to back. It should not move.

Rear Facing Installation

LATCH Installation

  • Remove LATCH connectors from storage space and pass them through their appropriate belt slots.
  • Press and hold the LATCH adjustor on one LATCH to lengthen. Repeat to the other LATCH adjustor.
  • Recline the car seat..
  • Place the car seat on the vehicle seat in a rear facing position.
  • Making sure your LATCH strap is not twisted, attach the LATCH strap to its adjacent anchor in an upright position.
  • You will hear a click. If you do not, try again.
  • Attach the other LATCH connector to its adjacent anchor in an upright position.
  • You will hear a click. If you do not, try again.
  • Align each LATCH strap on the LATCH bar with the “LATCH STRAP HERE REAR-FACING” label on each side of the car seat.
  • Push the car seat into the vehicle seat firmly.
  • At the same time, tighten the straps until the seat is secured.
  • Make sure your car seat is secured by wiggling both side to side and up and down. It should not move.

Seat Belt Installation

  • Recline the car seat.
  • Lift the cover off of the car seat.
  • Open the rear-facing lock off farthest away from where the vehicle belt will be buckled.
  • Pull the seat belt out and pass it under the LATCH bar.
  • Make sure it goes through the rear-facing belt path.
  • Pull the seat belt across the seat and then through the opposite rear-facing belt slot.
  • Make sure it is under the LATCH bar.
  • Double check that your seat belt is not twisted anywhere.
  • Once satisfied, buckle the seat belt.
  • Push the car seat into the vehicle seat firmly.
  • At the same tighten the lap belt and then the shoulder belt.
  • Put the shoulder portion of the seat belt through the opened lock off.
  • Tighten the belt and then secure it by closing the lock off arm.
  • Make sure you heard a click when closing the lock off arm. If you did not, try it again.
  • Replace the car seat cover back onto the car seat.
  • Make sure your car seat is secured by wiggling both side to side and up and down. It should not move.

What colors and fabrics does the Britax Marathon G4.1 come in?

The Britax Marathon has a fun selection of colors and patterns to choose from. They include: Azul (black and aqua), Confetti (black with purple fabric and white polk-a-dots), Onyx (black with thin black and white stripes), Beckham (dark grey and light grey), Domino (black with grey and black stripes), Pink Giraffe (gray with dark pink and grey giraffe print), Silver Cloud (black with silver and black techno print), Static (black with white and black static print).

The Bottom Line

The Britax Marathon G4.1 is a high quality well performing seat. It’s safety features is what sets it apart from other car seats. The Safe Cell technology is really what you want in a car seat. Beyond safety, it’s comfort, style, and convenience rank pretty high up there as well.

We all know that being a parent is like running a marathon. You are always on the go no matter if you have one child or six. Let the Britax Marathon G4.1 make your life just a little bit more simple.

About the Author Rachel Fink

Rachel Fink is a writer and mom of 7 kids. She keeps her sanity by keeping a stash of chocolate and coffee nearby.

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