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Nuna vs Uppababy

Nuna vs UPPAbaby : Which Infant Car Seat is Better?

Nuna vs UPPAbaby is a match going on in the car seat community, and if you have been looking for the best car seat, you have probably come across these two brands.

Knowing which one is perfect for your baby can be a challenging selection, but we have done your homework for you.

You’ve likely come across the Nuna Pipa and UPPAbaby Mesa infant car seats while searching for the perfect car seat for your baby.

Nuna vs UPPAbaby: Which is Better?

There are similarities between the two seats, and at first glance, they appear almost identical, but there are a few differences that might help you decide.

Find out what the Nuna Pipa and UPPAbaby Mesa car seats have to offer, along with a comparison of their pros and cons.

Overview: Nuna Pipa Vs UPPAbaby Mesa

UPPAbaby MESA infant car seat is the go-to choice for many families considering a UPPAbaby stroller, and the same goes for families considering a Nuna stroller.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, Mesa and Pipa are exclusively rear-facing, which is the safest position for very young children.

Additionally, they share many features that should be present in an infant car seat, including a carrying handle, a canopy, LATCH and seatbelt installation, and a harness.

The UPPAbaby MESA and Nuna PIPA are top-rated for safety,  ease of use, and quick installation. Let us do a brief overview of each of them.

Nuna PIPA Infant Car Seat

nuna vs uppababy - Nuna pipa
Source: Nunababy

According to consumer reports, the Nuna Pipa infant car seat is a top-rated car seat. It comes with all the regular safety features, like the front and side-impact protection and a 5-points harness.

But the Nuna Pipa has additional side impact protection and a  steel load leg that extends from its base to the floor of your car, which adds stability, absorbs impact energy and pulls force away from your baby in case of a crash.

Asides from being a safety-conscious car seat, it comes with machine-washable fabric free of flame-retardant chemicals and metal LATCH connectors for easy installation.

One feature that makes the PIPA a best-seller is an innovative “Dream Drape” cover that protects the baby from the elements.

The Nuna Pipa infant car seat is adaptable with strollers from Nuna, UPPAbaby and several other brands.

Nuna Pipa has 4 versions. They are PIPA LiteP, PIPA Lite R, PIPA Lite LX and PIPA Lite RX.

These versions are the lightest in the market, weighing over  2.5 pounds less than the original PIPA and other car seats.

The Nuna PIPA RX, Nuna PIPA Lite R and Nuna PIPA Lite RX have a RELX base that offers four recline positions and more adjustable components, which allows the base to fit a greater range of vehicles and make installation easier.

UPPAbaby Mesa Infant Car Seat

Nuna vs Uppababy : Infant car seats MESA | UPPAbaby
Source : UPPAbaby

By using the UPPAbaby MESA with a UPPAbaby stroller, you can easily have the easiest travel systems:

Simply attach the car seat directly to the frame of the UPPAbaby VISTA or CRUZ stroller, and disconnect it by pressing a button on top of the handle.

The UPPAbaby Mesa is not only sleek and stylish, but it also boasts superior ease of use ratings, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

It has tightness indicators on the seat that turns from red to green to show you when it is safely secured. You can install the UPPAbaby Mesa with its base or a seat belt only.

The Mesa does not have a steel load leg like the Pipa, but it has side impact protection and an adjustable headrest with expanded polypropylene (EPP) foam wings that help keep babies safe as they grow.


Nuna vs UPPAbaby : Pricing

The starting price of the UPPAbaby MESA is slightly lower than the Nuna PIPA, but they both have higher-priced versions of their car seats.

Two-colour variations of the UPPAbaby MESA – Henry Blue Marl and Jordan Charcoal Gray cost an extra $50 because they are made of naturally fire-resistant merino wool instead of polyester.

Merino wool helps to regulate the baby’s body temperature, keeping her cool on warm days and warm on cool days.

The Nuna PIPA Lite models also have an increased price because of their materials. The PIPA Lite models are made of a  lighter and more flexible foam than most car seats.

The Pipa LX and RX versions cost $50 more than the Lite because of their magnetic Dream Drape cover and merino wool fabric.

PIPA Lite R and PIPA Lite RX have an additional cost of $50  because of the RELX base, unlike the original PIPA base models.

Price Guide: MESA

MESA Infant Car Seat – Henry (Blue Marl) Wool Version – $359.99 (Buy it on Amazon)

MESA Infant Car Seat – Jake (Black) – $299.99

UPPAbaby MESA Infant Car Seat -Jordan (Charcoal Melange)Merino Wool Version/Naturally Fire Retardant – $349.99

MESA Infant Car Seat – Bryce (White & Grey Marl) – $299.99

Price Guide: Nuna PIPA

PIPA – $319.95

Lite – $349.95

Lite RX – $499.95

RX – $379.95

Lite LX: $399.95

Lite R: $399.95

Nuna Pipa vs UPPAbaby Mesa : Weight and height

Weight Measurements

The Nuna PIPA Lite models are light-weighted infant car seats with 2-4 pounds less than most others.

Mesa weighs 9.9 pounds while Pipa weighs  8 pounds and its lite models weigh between 5.3 – 7.5 pounds.

Weight and Height Limit

The weight limit for infant car seats is similar and can be used for about a year.

The weight limit for Nuna PIPA Series is 4 to 32 pounds, and the height limit is 32″. UPPAbaby MESA has a weight limit of  4 to 35 pounds and a height limit of 32″

(Please note that Nuna weight measurements do not include the canopy or insert, and these components normally add about 1.5 pounds to the seat.)


According to Consumer Reports, the Nuna PIPA infant car seat earned a “best” rating, while the UPPAbaby MESA infant seat earned a “better” ranking for crash protection.

Despite coming slightly below in the ranking for crash protection, the UPPAbaby MESA scored marginally higher in Consumer Reports’ overall rankings with an overall score of 72, while the Nuna PIPA earned an overall score of 67.

Based on ease of use, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, UPPAbaby MESA earned the highest score of five stars in every category.

In comparison, the Nuna PIPA earned an overall score of four stars. The NHTSA rankings evaluate instructions and labels, installation, and securing the child.


The Nuna Pipa is compatible with a broader range of strollers compared to the UPPAbaby Mesa.

This makes the PIPA a more versatile choice if you want to use the car seat on a jogging stroller, travel stroller or double stroller.


Installation with seat belt

Although the Nuna PIPA can be installed with a seatbelt, the PIPA Lite and Lite LX versions cannot, which means it must be installed using the base.

Watch the video below to know how to install each of them.

How to install Nuna Pipa Infant Car Seat with the seatbelt:

Source: Carseatlite

There are two routing systems (European and American routing methods) to install a Nuna Pipa seat with the seat belt.

  1. Use the belt guides to thread the lap belt through
  2. Then thread the shoulder belt through the blue belt guides on the back of the seat.
  3. Push down on the seat, pull the buckle, and push the back of the car seat.
  4. Move the car seat from side to side and front to back to check for movement. It should not move more than one inch.
  5. Check the level line and move the car seat around to ensure it is appropriately reclined.

American routing method

  1. First, thread the lap belt through the belt guides.
  2. Buckle the lap belt.
  3. Check the level line to ensure that it is level with the base. You can pull out your seal belt to lock it if necessary.
  4. Make sure the car seat moves no more than one inch by pushing down and back. The Nuna Pipa should be put back in the car seat from behind, and the slack should be pulled up if it moves more than one inch.
  5. Recheck for movement.
How to Install UPPAbaby Infant Car Seat with the seat belt


Installation with BASE

Based on the manufacturers, UPPAbaby mesa and Nuna Pipa infant car seats can be installed with the base in seconds, using either the LATCH system for convenience or the vehicle seat belt.

To install the UPPAbaby MESA:

  • Level the base till the indicator turns green.
  • Remove the LATCH connectors from storage by pressing the orange button on top of the base
  • Install the LATCH connectors on the lower anchors.
  • Press down on the base until the tension indicator turns green.


To install the Nuna PIPA :

Source: The Car Seat Lady

  1. Slide the connectors into the lower anchors and wait till the indicators turn green to indicate a secure connection.
  2. Turn the load leg until it hits the floor of your car, and the indicators turn green.
  3. You can check the bubble indicator on the side of the base to see if it’s level. If it’s not, pull the recline foot on the underside to create a more reclined angle or adjust the length of the load leg.

Pros and Cons of UPPAbaby Mesa

  • Highest rating for ease of use
  • Easily Connects and disconnects to UPPAbaby VISTA and CRUZ strollers without the need for adapters a
  • Requires less adapters than PIPA when you use VISTA as a double stroller
  • Color-coded Tightness indicators
  • easily adjustable harness buckles as the baby grows without disassembling the seat
  • Adjustable headrest is lined with EPP foam for added protection and comfort as your child grows.
  • Self-retracting LATCH connectors
  • fire-resistant fabric on some models
  • Machine-washable cover
  • Less expensive than Nuna Pipa
  • Lacks the safety features of Nuna Pipa (i.e. steel load leg base)
  • Not compatible with a wide range of other stroller brands
  • It is not as light as Nuna Pipa.

Pros and Cons of Nuna Pipa

  • The steel load leg in the base reduces the rotation of the car seat by about 90 %, It absorbs forces and minimizes impact on the baby, and this is very good for safety.
  • Compatible with a broader range of stroller brands and types than UPPAbaby MESA
  • PIPA Lite versions are lighter than UPPAbaby MESA
  • All the versions do not have flame retardant chemicals.
  • It has a leatherette handlebar
  • PIPA, PIPA RX and PIPA Lite LX have a dream drape cover that attaches with magnets to provide complete sun protection
  • The RELX base on PIPA RX, PIPA Lite R and PIPA Lite RX offers more adjustability than most car seat bases which allows four recline positions and reduces installation problems.
  • The LATCH connectors are rigid, which makes installation
  • It costs more than MESA (with about $100 to $200 difference depending on model)
  • Harness must be threaded (on all versions except PIPA Lite RX) through the back of the seat to make adjustments as the baby grows
  • The headrest is non-adjustable (on all versions except PIPA Lite RX)
  • Three of the PIPA Lite versions cannot be installed without the base for taxis and travel.
  • The cost of extra features is higher compared to UPPAbaby Mesa. For example, the extra Nuna Pipa car seat base is $159.95 for PIPA base and $199.95 for RELX base, but it is $129.99 for MESA base


The Nuna PIPA and UPPAbaby MESA are recommended car seats regarded for their safety, ease of use, quality, comfort and style.

While Nuna Pipa is more pricey than UPPAbaby, it is also more compatible with other strollers.

Nuna Pipa Vs UPPAbaby Mesa: Which Infant Car Seat is Better?

The ball is in your court to decide which one better suits your family. The review has made the work easier as you can check through their features, Pros and cons to know which one you prefer.

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