Protecting children on the road since 1966
Fifty years ago, Britax introduced the company‘s first child restraint system. It was the 1960‘s and Britax was the UK‘s, and at that time Europe‘s, leading OEM supplier of in-vehicle safety equipment such as brakes, seatbelts, vehicle lighting accessories and helmets.
Britax, including its subsidiaries, had built its reputation in post-war Europe where the needs for road vehicle occupant safety became apparent through the extensive use and acceptance of seatbelts in wartime aircraft.
The company was one of the first to recognise this need and introduced vehicle seatbelts to the manufactured product range.
By the 1960s, Britax and its subsidiaries were major suppliers to leading automotive brands across Europe including Volkswagen, Opel and Audi.
What set Britax apart was its leading-edge quality control and processes that included in particular physical testing for durability and strength.
As a major contributor to the development of the world’s first standard on seat belts – the British Standard in 1960 – the expertise and superior testing and research of the company was well recognized by the industry and regulators alike.
In 1966 the company extended its vehicle safety expertise to children in the car in both the UK and Germany.
In the UK, our first child car seat was the stylish Britax Star Rider available in red, blue or grey for children 6 months of age to approx. five years old and featured a five-strap-harness.
The Galaxy Harness from the child seat could be used for children from 5-11 years old in order to restrain and protect them in the car.
The Lufki was developed in 1966-67 in Ulm, Germany by young father and Römer employee, Hermann Wetter.
The idea for a child car seat came to him the previous year when he drove his newborn daughter placed in a cardboard box in the backseat of the car from Vienna, Austria to Ulm. Upon being urged by his wife, he sought a better solution to transporting children safely in the car.
The Lufki was an inflatable car seat bright blue and red. The company only manufactured a few hundred pieces before Wetter continued to work on an improved version of the car seat.
In 1969, the Peggy was born.
The Peggy belongs to one of the most iconic, instantly recognizable products in Germany. The black and orange car seat is synonymous with childhood and car safety in the 1970s and 1980s.
It was manufactured by Britax Römer for more than 30 years.
Our heritage is deeply rooted in both safety and the automotive industry, as opposed to many other child car seat manufacturers whose heritage lies in the toy or pushchair business.
Britax had the unique know-how born out of an automotive safety environment and applied it to developing a strong child car seat that works seamlessly with the other components in the vehicle.
In the 1970s, Britax made the strategic decision to only focus its efforts on child car seats and early on in the decade, Britax and Römer merged.
Despite the long road that Britax has been on that led to child seats, one thing is clear: passenger safety runs in our DNA.
Specifically, the number one priority for all of our seats is not how they will look, but what they will do for the children they are built to protect and the everyday family freedom they provide to parents.
What makes our child safety so unique over the past 50 years and today has been our innovative technology full of industry firsts, our superior research and testing capabilities and our long-term partnerships in the motor vehicle and racing industries. What remains strong is that we are always pushing boundaries – so that your family life is boundary free.