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Magic Beans owner Eli smiles warmly in front of the Nuna Rava and Diono 3QXT+ car seats.

the Diono 3QXT+ VS. Nuna Rava: which is better?

Magic Beans owner Eli smiles warmly in front of the Nuna Rava and Diono 3QXT+ car seats.

No one warns you that picking a convertible car seat is one of the hardest baby gear decisions you’ll make. Convertible car seats are are the biggest and heaviest car seat you’ll ever have, and it’s usually the stage you’ll use the longest so picking the right one is important. The Diono 3QXT+ and Nuna Rava convertible car seats are both popular and each goes well above and beyond the American crash test requirements. So with safety not a discriminating factor, how do the Diono 3QXT+ and Nuna Rava stack up against each other?

The Diono 3QXT+ and Nuna Rava share several basic features but differ in everyday functionality.

Both the Diono 3QXT+ and Nuna Rava face rear- and forward-facing, have multiple recline levels, three layers of side impact protection, come with infant inserts, and have five point harnesses.

Neither seat is better than the other, but their other features meet very completely different priorities. For us at Magic Beans it comes down to Nuna Rava car seats ease-of-use VS. the Diono 3QXT’s longevity and ability to fit three seats across. 

The Diono 3QXT+ has a booster seat mode for ultimate longevity

4 images in one showing the multiple ages of children that fit in the diono 3qxt+ car seat: infant, toddler, young child, older child.

The biggest difference between the Diono 3QXT+ and Nuna Rava is how long you can use each seat. The Diono 3QXT+ is technically classified as a combination booster seat as it’s both a convertible car seat + a seat-belted booster seat in one (though it doesn't have a backless mode). 

 

 

 

The Diono 3QXT+ has more space to grow into

The Nuna Rava is a perfectly cozy seat but its bowl shape can run tight on fast growing toddlers. The Diono 3QXT+ has a sleek 17 inch frame but its shallower walls along the elbow and hip area allow your child to grow, stretch out, and ride with their legs in multiple positions. The flexible space and taller seating height combine for a safe and comfortable ride that lasts years longer than most convertible car seats.

More reasons the Diono 3QXT+ lasts so long

picture of the diono 3qxt+ ona a white studio background. It's one color is mostly black with some grey, and a grey plastic shell
  • The Diono 3QXT+ has a higher weight max - The Diono 3QXT+ is rated for 5-120 lbs; with children fitting comfortably in it until age 10 easily. The Nuna Rava is rated for 4-65lbs, but we mostly see kids outgrowing it around age 4-5 for space reasons. 
  • The Diono 3QXT+ has a longer harness by several inches
  • The Diono 3QXT+ has a ten year expiration date before it needs to be retired, longer than any other car seat in America! Perfect for one kid their whole life, or multiple child families looking to cycle childeren though the various car seat stages.

Fit 3 car seats across with the Diono 3QXT+

Diono is most famous for making car seats that fit three across on one car row. Fitting even two car seats side-by-side is difficult but fitting three is nearly impossible. So families who are thinking that two children are the plan, but not terribly averse to three children, should really consider the 17-inch wide Diono 3QXT+ as a long term, cost-saving option over the 19-inch wide Nuna Rava

The Nuna Rava is an ultra compact car seat

The Nuna Rava is one of the most compact convertible car seats sold in America. For parents that don’t live near a Magic Beans and can’t do a car seat fitting, the Nuna Rava is our old-faithful…it fits in nearly every car and often with space to spare. It’s famously known to fit compact cars and even two-door Mini Coopers! If backseat space is at all a worry, you really can’t go wrong with the Nuna Rava.

The Nuna Rava is popular but there’s a few details we should talk about   

the nuna rava in lagoon teal facing three quarters.         the nuna rava in lagoon teal facing to the left, in profile         the nuna rava in lagoon teal facing to the left, fully reclined.             

Interior Space - The Nuna Rava supports a newborn and young toddler very comfortably. Very narrow children usually fit the Nuna Rava until age five, but the largest children hit three and half years old and really run up against the side of the car seat quickly. 

Short Harness - The Nuna Rava harness length corresponds with the height of the head rest. For the adorable children who run a bit thicker than taller, the harness will feel snug faster.

Laid back legroom - The leg rest extension is cool but it doesn’t add a ton of length to the car seat. It’s still helpful for getting an extra couple months of rear-facing comfort so we aren’t mad at it. 

So, which is a better car seat: the Diono 3QXT+ VS. Nuna Rava? Neither, and both, for very important reasons.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting the simplest car seat. Especially if you’re going to move your convertible car seat between cars, and don’t mind buying a booster seat in the future…then the Nuna Rava car seat's intuitive functionality can’t be beat. 

But you can’t beat the ten year life span and ability to install three Diono 3QXT+ car seats across one row. If you’re comfortable with its installation or not moving it too often, then the Diono 3QXT+ is the perfect car seat for you. If you’re planning on keeping to a single-child family or if cost is the priority, then the Diono 3QXT+ is especially a great choice that’ll save you $300-600 dollars in infant car seat and booster seat costs!

Any questions? Comment below or reach out to our experts! We'll match you with the perfect baby gear for your family. Give us a ring at 617-383-8259, email us at questions@mbeans.com, submit your questions to https://www.mbeans.com/questions, or book a Virtual or In-store Consultation with a baby gear expert today!

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