Britax Marathon G4.1 Review: Is it Really Worth the Money?

Review of: Britax Marathon G4.1

Use: Keeping Kids Safe while you Drive

We Like

  • Crash forces are diverted away from the child’s body and distributed across the seat shell .
  • Seat motion is minimized during a crash.
  • The amount of padding absorbs crash forces and provides the child with comfort.
  • The installation is easy.
  • The child’s body is slowed down during a crash.

We Don't Like

  • If the cover has to be washed too often, it may begin to fray.
  • Lap strap has a tight fit.
  • May have to work with the straps to achieve a good fit for an infant.


The Britax Marathon G4.1 is a convertible car seat that gives you some bang for your buck when talking price vs. Safety. If you liked the old Marathon G4, the newest model will blow you away! This Britax Marathon G4.1 car seat receives excellent safety ratings and reviews. Parents love it because it is a Britax, it is made to absorb crash energy throughout the entire seat, and the price point is very good in order to achieve high-end benefits. When looking for a good name in car seats with more pros than cons, this may be what you are looking for.

Product Description

The Britax Marathon G4.1 is a convertible car seat that gives you some bang for your buck when talking price vs. Safety (we must put safety first). The Britax brand has produced some excellent car seats.

The Marathon is one of those. It is the non-ClickTight version of the original Britax Marathon that will please parents wanting to utilize the newest and most effective convertible car seat while staying on a budget.

Because this is a Britax convertible car seat, you can set it up to be rear-facing or forward-facing. In other words, the car seat can face either direction, depending on the age and size of your child.

However, what makes it unique is that the seat is designed to compress in the event of a collision while also reducing how much your child moves forward. There aren’t many car seats on the market that have such a safety feature. So, why Britax Marathon car seat is one of the best product on the market? Let’s start at the very beginning.

Safety Features

SafeCell Impact Protection

This is a system of safety components that include the car seat base, the tethering system, and the shock absorbing steel frame. This system ensures the child is protected beyond federal safety standards.

Side Impact Protection

The seat curves around your child on the sides, giving them added protection against side impact collisions.

Impact-absorbing Base

The base is designed to absorb some of the crash energy.
Britax Marathon Features

Impact-absorbing Harness Pads

Impact absorbing harness pads keep the chest clip in place during a collision. The 5-point harness stays snug against your child to keep them safe.

V-shaped Tether

The v-shaped tether, which can be found in the rear of the seat, is designed to minimize seat rotation.

Steel Frame

The Britax Marathon is so soft and plush that it’s hard to believe that there is a steel frame inside. The steel frame acts as a metal skeleton. It can absorb a lot of crash energy.

A Safe and Easy Installation

A major feature is the LATCH system because it allows for very easy installation. However, you may need to use seatbelt installation if you will be installing three car seats in the back seat. LATCH can work well for one or two car seats in the backseat.

EZ-Buckle System

System keeps the buckles and straps out of the way while you are putting your child in the seat. Straps and buckles that get in the way can be a nuisance, especially on a hot day where a buckle may be hot and you accidentally sit your child on top of that hot buckle. The EZ-Buckle System rectifies this issue.

3-position Recline

The 3-position recline helps the car seat fit in different styles of vehicle seats. There is also a side-level indicator that shows if the rear- or forward-facing angle is safe for the child.

LATCH Connectors

The LATCH system is popular because many vehicles are outfitted for it. The LATCH connectors are easy to see with this car seat. This also takes a lot of work out of installation.

Easy-remove Cover

Having an easy-remove cover is important to a lot of parents because spills and accidents happen. It can be a nightmare to have a car seat that doesn’t have a replacement cover that can be thrown in the washing machine. Fortunately, this convertible car seat has that removable cover.


Convenience Britax Marathon

Quick-adjust 10-position Harness

This Britax car seat has a 10-position no-rethread harness. This makes it easy to find a harness height setting that is comfortable for your child. When rear-facing, the straps have to be below the child’s shoulders. When forward-facing, the straps have to be above the shoulders.

Quick-adjust 2-position Buckle

The 2-position buckle strap helps with proper placement of the straps because positioning is very important in the case of a crash.

Removable Body Pillow

The removable body pillow keeps infants in place so they are not moving around in the seat. Once the child is large enough to not need that extra restraint, it can be removed.

Plush Foam Padding

There is plush foam padding covering the shell of the car seat so that your child has comfort, but also because of the added absorbency that is provided if a crash occurs.

Installation Instructions

A car seat reaches maximum effectiveness when it is installed correctly. Fortunately, the rear- and forward-facing seatbelt and LATCH paths are clearly marked so you can see them well. Installation is also not very difficult, regardless of whether you are using LATCH or seatbelt installation. Here are the details regarding rear-facing and forward-facing installation for Britax Marathon G4.1:


Rear Facing Versa-Tether
Remove the lower connectors from the storage slots in the base. You then press the ejector release button to add length. Do this for both sides. Fully recline the seat and place it rear-facing. The base must be in full contact with the vehicle seat. The lower connectors can be attached to the lower adjacent anchors.

Push the seat down while pulling the latch straps tight. The straps should be secure and the car seat shouldn’t move more than one inch in any direction. If the seat is not secure, you can repeat the process or install in a new position. The back angle for children shouldn’t be more or less than 30 degrees and not more than 45 degrees for infants.

The blue line in the indicator on the side of the car seat should be parallel to the ground when the vehicle is sitting on a flat surface. If you use seatbelt installation, run the seatbelt through the seatbelt guides and ensure the straps are pulled tight.


Forward Facing Installation
The tether pouch is in the rear of the car seat. You will lengthen the tether strap, but will move that strap out of the way while you set the recline position of the seat to the desired position. No more than 3 inches of the base should hang over the edge of the vehicle seat and the base must be flat. The vehicle head restraint shouldn’t be pushing the seat forward.

If it does, then it must be raised or removed. The lower connector needs to be attached to the lower anchor in the vehicle seat on each side. The car seat should be pushed down as the latch straps are tightened. The seat should not move more than one inch in any direction.

Lastly, attach the tether strap to an anchor point. Tighten the straps so the seat is secure. If you must use seatbelt installation, there are seatbelt guides on the seat where you run the seatbelt, but you have to ensure the seat is tight.

What's New?

Weight, Size, and User Manual

A child can sit in the rear-facing position until they are up to 40 pounds (weight limit). Once your child reaches 40 pounds or 49” tall, they can sit forward facing. Of course, this also depends on state recommendations and how your preferences coincide with those recommendations.

Nonetheless, the Britax convertible car seat is designed for you to get maximum use out of the rear-facing and forward-facing positions. A child can use the seat until they are 65 pounds and/or 49 inches tall.

If you want to read more about the Britax Marathon G4.1 installation and safety instructions, you can download Marathon G4.1 User Guide.