Diono Cambria 2 XL
Coming into the market at a cool $99.99, the Diono Cambria 2 XL does exactly what it says on the tin: it’s a safe, reliable booster and performs well despite its budget price tag. It’s not a car seat that will set your soul on fire but it will ride your child safely from four years old to their preteen in two modes – highback booster and backless booster. It’s a no-fuss booster that’s ideal for safe riding whilst benefiting from advanced features like spacious room for big kids, changeable mode along with your kid’s growth, lightweight body, comfortable ride, and impressive multiple colors for boys and girls – all of which are synonymous with more expensive boosters. The Diono Cambria 2 XL promises to make your child’s ride that bit easier and fun without putting a dent in your bank account.
Diono Cambria 2 XL Review - Most Comfortable 2-in-1 Booster
1. Who Is It Best For?
Will the Diono Cambria be a good option for your child and your family?
If you’re looking for a budget booster that’ll safely ride your kids from toddler to tween, this is the one for both your child and family.
Ideal for kids that are at least 4 years old who is big enough for the booster world, the respectable wide space up to 18.5-inch in the seat is perfect.
The 120-pound weight limit and 63-inch height limit, 8 years of lifespan, extended 36 months warranty, and lightweight body, make the Cambria 2 XL a safe and comfortable ride that your child won’t want to get out.
With its detachable high back and two modes, it makes for a great 2-in-1 booster to grow with your child.
2. Pros and Cons
3. Value for Money
Is the price tag worth it?
If your child grows to 4 years or older and you need to switch him/her to a booster that lasts for the rest time for a car seat, then the Diono Cambria 2 XL is a no-brainer.
Its great weight and height limits, spacious room for fitting, and nifty features like an extended warranty and 2-in-1 booster modes, promise a long but comfortable ride that’ll put a smile on your kid’s face every time they sit in the car seat, have drinks or snacks from the cup holders and start the car trip with you.
Few 2-in-1 booster seats are available on the market. So there is no direct competitor to Diono Cambria 2 XL.
As a result, we compared it to a harness booster – Chicco MyFit and a backless booster from the same Diono company – Solana 2.
They are not in the same car seat type, so we don’t list their advantages and disadvantages comparision
What other car seats should you consider?
Why is it better than Diono Cambria 2 XL
Why is it worse than Diono Cambira 2 XL
Dimension and Width
It’s a bulky car seat – that should be the first impression for Diono Cambria 2 XL. It’s very different from its Radian 3-across series with an ultra-slim body.
The widest point at the connection between the headrest and shoulder rest reaches 20.1-inch.
This is even as bulky as an all-in-one car seat. But this matches the concept of the XL model, which is designed to grow from big toddlers more than 4 years old to their preteens.
The width is even wider up to 23-inch if you attach two cup holders, which are even specially designed for the car seat base’s curve.
Without the cup holders, if you remove the highback and turn it into the backless mode, the width of Diono Cambria 2 XL reduces to 17-inch, which is suitable for fitting 3 across then.
The height of Cambria 2 XL is up to 29-inch, which should be the highest of a car seat. This is because the Cambria 2 XL is designed for tall kids up to 63-inch.
To provide the best comfort and protect your child in the car seat, it’s better if the car seat is higher than your kid’s height.
The depth is only 16.1-inch. That’s deep enough for fitting a child well at the back while not taking too much space from the driver or passenger’s space.
The Diono Cambria 2 XL weighs only 12.8 pounds. That’s not as heavy as those bulky convertibles or all-in-one car seats, but not as light as backless models either.
It’s at the medium level.
However, it’s not as portable as the Diono Radian 3R, which features a foldable seat base.
If you’re using it as a belt-positioning highback booster, the score for its portability is as low as 7 – relatively lightweight but large in size.
If removing the highback and using it as a backless booster, the Cambria 2 XL will be ultra-portable – it’s just a seat base, as light as 5.8 pounds.
Two Cup Holders
The Diono Cambria 2 XL has two detachable cup holders on both sides.
It’s easy to install and uninstall the cup holder.
Swivel outward to the locked position for use. Swivel inward to the recessed and locked position when not in use.
You may have found that the Diono Cambria 2 XL cup holders are shallow, not as deep as cup holders on Graco car seats.
Here are two tips from the manual to use the cup holders:
DO NOT use hot liquids as this could burn a child.
Do not step on or put excess weight on the cup holder which could cause it to break.
6. Crash Tests and Safety Ratings
The Diono Cambria 2 XL is certainly approved to be on sale on the market before it’s tested to meet the safety standards in the US.
The manufacturer boasts that this child restraint system conforms to Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (CMVSS) 213.2.
But it does not mention the European standards. However, this does not mean it’s not applicable in Europe. It’s just that there are other alternatives from the EU car seat manufacturers.
The Diono Cambria 2 XL is certified for use in passenger cars, multipurpose passenger vehicles, and trucks only.
Weight and Height Limits
Designed for big kids, the Cambria 2 XL has impressive top weight and height limits, up to 120 pounds in weight and 63 inches in height.
These two numbers are greater than most all-in-one boosters that commonly feature a 100-pound top weight and 57-inch top height.
From this point, the Diono Cambria 2 XL is suitable for big kids who are growing a bit faster than their peers. Or ride for a long time until your child doesn’t need to use a car seat.
Please note that there is a minimum age requirement for using Cambria 2 XL. Your child must be 4 years or older, which is required by the state car seat regulations to ride a booster.
Diono Cambria 2 XL is a booster seat, so it’s understandable that the car seat requires the minimum age to ride in this car seat.
If you’re going to install the Cambria 2 XL for your child, make sure he or she is at least 4 years old, which is the minimum age requirement for a kid to travel in a booster by car seat regulations in US states.
Thanks to its 120-pound weight limit and 63-inch height limit, the Cambria 2 XL is able to ride big kids to 10 years old.
That’s enough for your child to stay in the car seat before they can get out of the car seat and are ready to wear the vehicle’s seat belt for security.
This matches its lifespan of 8 years.
Positioning as a booster, the Diono Cambria 2 XL can be used for the third car seat stage. And it lasts for only one stage.
It’s a 2-in-1 booster seat that features a removable highback. For preschoolers from 4 to 7 years old, it works as a highback booster with additional support on the back.
As your kid grows, the highback part can be removed and leave only the car seat base to raise your child up to fit with the vehicle’s seat belt.
Is a Diono Cambria 2 XL 2-in-1 car seat allowed on planes?
It’s a pity that the Diono Cambria 2 XL is not authorized for aircraft use. That’s the common rule for all booster seats.
It’s quite easy to understand this point if you have read the installation instructions. Boosters need a shoulder belt for secure installation in both vehicles and airplanes.
But there is no shoulder belt on the plane. That’s why boosters are excluded from air travel.
How long is Diono Cambria 2 XL 2-in-1 car seat good for
8 years of lifespan, that’s the longest time the Diono Cambria 2 XL can be used.
However, the real-life case might be a bit different. Because the lifespan of 8 years started from the manufacturer date, neither the day when you purchase it online or offline nor the day you install it in your vehicle.
To know how long it lasts in real life, you can find the sticker on the back for the exact manufacturer date and add 8 years, then minus the date on which you begin to install it for use.
But as the explanation in the longevity part above, this 8 years of lifespan perform well enough until your child can get out of a car seat and wear the vehicle’s seat belt like an adult.
Which Installation Method Should I Use?
Just like the other car seats, the Diono Cambria 2 XL allows two installation methods, with LATCH or with a seat belt.
Install Diono Cambria 2 XL Highback Mode with LATCH
1. Disengage LATCH/UAS connectors from storage slots and lay booster seats on its side. While depressing the cam lock lever, pull LATCH/UAS connectors away from the booster seat and extend both straps all the way. Do not overextend connector straps.
2. Attach both LATCH/UAS connectors to the vehicle anchors, starting with the connector that is furthest from you. For ease of use, make sure the open end of hooks face upward during use.
3. While pushing the booster against the vehicle seat, pull one adjuster strap tight and then the other. Make sure that both LATCH/UAS connectors are securely attached to the vehicle’s lower anchors.
4. Booster seat should rest firmly on the vehicle seat bottom and touch the vehicle seat back. A gap is acceptable as long as the head support is touching the vehicle seat back or headrest. The entire seat bottom should sit flat on the vehicle seat. IMPORTANT: Try to position the backrest in full contact with the vehicle seat back. It may also be necessary to adjust the recline angle of the booster seat to match that of the vehicle seat.
Adjust the recline angel
1. Push the booster seat backrest backward until it moves freely.
2. Push the seat bottom and backrest of the booster seat down and back into the vehicle seat until there is secure positioning with the booster seat and vehicle seat bottom and vehicle seat back. A gap is acceptable as long as the head support is touching the vehicle seat back or headrest.
Secure the child
Use ONLY the lap and shoulder belt system when restraining the child in this booster seat. DO NOT use a lap belt only.
1. Properly position the child into the installed seat. The child should be sitting upright and seated all the way back in the booster seat.
2. Adjust head support to proper height: The shoulder belt guide should be slightly above the child’s shoulders (at least 1 cm). Squeeze the head support adjustment lever on the back of the booster seat while adjusting its height up or down to fit the child.
4. Fasten vehicle seat belts across children. The lap portion of the seat belt should rest within both lower belt guides. Make sure the vehicle seat belt is not twisted and lays flat across the child’s lap, torso and shoulder.
5. Tighten the seat belt by pulling the diagonal shoulder belt portion in the direction of the arrows.
6. Confirm the seat belt buckle is in the correct position – it should align with the RED belt path guides on head support and side of the seat.
Install Backless Mode
While this booster seat is designed to offer advanced side-impact protection with its backrest section attached, the seat bottom can also be used alone as a backless booster. WARNING! Use ONLY the lap and shoulder belt system when restraining the child in this booster seat. DO NOT use a lap belt only.
ONLY use with children whose ears are below the top of the vehicle seat or headrest.
1. Remove the backrest by reversing the steps shown in “Seat Assembly.”
2. Make sure both LATCH/UAS connectors are securely attached to the vehicle’s lower anchors. While pushing the booster against the vehicle seat, pull the adjuster straps tight. 3. The booster seat should rest firmly on the vehicle seat bottom and touch the vehicle seat back. The entire seat bottom should sit flat on the vehicle seat.
4. Properly positioned child: sitting upright and all the way back in the booster seat. Fasten the seat belt across the child. Make sure the seat belt is not twisted and lays flat across the child’s hips, torso and shoulder.
5. Tighten the seat belt by pulling the diagonal shoulder belt portion in the direction of the arrows. IMPORTANT: DO NOT position the vehicle shoulder belt over the armrest. It MUST pass through the lower belt guide.
Headrest and Harness
To grow with your kid, the Diono Cambria 2 XL features a 6-position headrest.
You can easily adjust the headrest to find a perfect fit for your kid based on his or her growth.
At this time, height is the deciding factor.
Luckily, the 6-position headrest can be adapted in 3 levels. Along with the 63-inch top height limit, the Cambria 2 XL will fit your child perfectly.
XL Design for Optimal Comfort
As an upgraded version, the Cambria 2 XL is a booster seat with a wide contoured seat base and extra length for better leg support and kid comfort.
You may have found in the dimension part that Diono Cambria 2 XL is very wide and spacious to provide extra room to grow with your child to tween.
Parents also appraised this car seat for its comfort on Amazon because their children love to stay in this car seat for travel.
Care and Maintenance
REMOVING THE COVER 1. Separate backrest section from seat bottom section. 2. Remove plastic fasteners and elastics that secure fabric cover to seat bottom, backrest, and head support. 3. Remove fabric cover pieces from the booster seat sections.
- DO NOT use solvents, harsh detergents or any other chemical or cleaning agent.
- DO NOT lubricate any part of the seat.
CLEANING FABRICS: Seat pad, infant support, harness and buckle pads
CLEANING HARNESS: Harness and buckle straps Machine wash in cold water on gentle cycle using mild detergent Dry flat and in the shade only
- DO NOT bleach, iron or dry clean Spot clean only with warm water. Use mild detergent Dry flat and in the shade only, before re-use
- DO NOT bleach or iron Spot clean only with warm water. Use mild detergent Towel dry completely before re-use
- DO NOT bleach
CLEANING FABRICS: Seat pad, infant support, harness and buckle pads
CLEANING HARNESS: Harness and buckle straps
CLEANING PLASTICS: Seat shell and components Machine wash in cold water on gentle cycle using mild det.
10. Bonus Features
XL means more space in this upgraded version 2. Along with the ergonomic design, the Diono Cambria provides most comfort for your growing kid.
Big toddlers, and preschoolers
7; bulky but lightweight
Weight limits (lb.)
40-120 for highback and backless booster
Height limit (inch)
63” for booster
16.1 x 20.1 x 29 in.
Two on both sides
4-10 years old
4-10 years old
LATCH and seat belt
|2-in-1 booster; XL for a spacious room; Extended Warranty|
The warranty for Diono Cambria 2 XL absolutely adds a lot of points to its overall score.
More than the 12-month standard warranty starting from the date of original purchase, the Diono offers an extra 24-month warranty for this child restraint system.
That means you’ll get a total of a 36-month warranty. The only condition is that you need to register with your order information. But that’s a quite simple step for most parents.
It’s commonly the first step if you’re planning to use the car seat for a long time, without a return.
The user manual is the most important thing you need to make sure it’s included in the package. You should always read the user manual before starting to install and use it for riding your child.
The user manual of Diono Cambria 2 XL is stored in a small storage bag on the back, but you can always find the online user manual on its official website, or download the PDF here.