Best Baby Strollers of 2016

Twenty one of the most popular strollers on the market  including our award winners (up front).
Looking for a baby stroller? We extensively tested and rated 21 of the top standard-size strollers to find out which are the best. We put them through an extensive side-by-side testing process, involving more than 30 specific tests and long-term hands-on use, rated each product on pragmatic day-to-day use performance criteria. One of the most difficult baby product decisions you face as a new parent is picking a stroller that will work best for you and your baby. Read on to find out which strollers came out on top…

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Test Results and Ratings

Displaying 1 - 5 of 21 << Previous | View All | Next >>

Analysis and Award Winners


Review by:
Juliet Spurrier, MD, Wendy Schmitz, and BabyGearLab Staff

Last Updated:
Thursday
September 15, 2016

Editors' Choice Winner


BOB Revolution Flex


The BOB Revolution Flex Editors' Choice Award

Price:   $500 List
$400 from Amazon
Sale - 20% Off


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The BOB Revolution won our hearts and an Editors' Choice award for a second time in a row. With one of the highest overall scores in the group, and the highest score for maneuverability, it is hard not to love just about everything about the Revolution. This BOB is easy to push and turn on any surface. It has large pneumatic wheels and adjustable tracking with a lockable swivel wheel that help keep it moving true no matter what the terrain. The adjustable suspension, near flat recline, wider seat design, and padded adjustable handlebar provide a comfortable experience for parents and baby no matter what adventure the day holds. The Revolution Flex has been updated in 2016 and more detailed information can be found in the review.

Editors' Choice Winner


UPPAbaby Cruz


The UPPAbaby Cruz Editors' Choice Award

Price:   $500 List
$500 from Amazon


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The UPPAbaby Cruz is a really cool product that came in second place in our review. It has the top score in ease of use and good scores in quality, ease of setup, and weight and folded size. While this is not the lightest in the group it has an unbelievably low weight of 21.6 pounds, which is 3 pounds lower than the average. The Cruz has a large canopy, giant storage with a max weight of 25 pounds, and really easy to use seatback recline and leg rest adjustability. The Cruz lost a little ground in testing for maneuverability because it is a little larger and the 4 wheel design meant it paled in comparison to the 3 wheeled models that were easier to navigate. The foam filled plastic wheels also made pushing and turning on unpaved surfaces harder. Maybe the only upgrade we wish the Cruz had is rubber tires.

The UPPAbaby Cruz also works great when used in combination with an infant car seat, and earned our Editors' Choice award in our Stroller and Car Seat Combo review.

The Cruz is a high end option and we walked away from this UPPAbaby feeling like the brand has yet to disappoint us.

Best Value winner


BOB Motion


The BOB Motion Best Value Award

Price:   $350 List
$230 from Amazon
Sale - 34% Off


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The BOB Motion is a budget friendly option that has a nice canopy with mesh peek-a-boo window, easy fold, and the most compact folded package. While it isn't as easy to maneuver as its bigger brother the Revolution, it does have rubber wheels, an adjustable handlebar, and all around suspension that help it roll on and off pavement and provide added comfort for the passenger and pusher.

The Motion has a nice storage bin that is easy to use and has a 10 pound maximum weight capacity. It took over 35 pounds on the bar to tilt the Motion back and it has a non-rethread 5 point harness that is easy to adjust. The brakes are easy to set and release and they had very little play with limited sliding resistance. Overall the Motion is a good option for parents with limited space on a budget, who are looking for a quality option with most of the features parents want and find useful.

Best Value Winner


Baby Jogger City Mini Single


The Baby Jogger City Mini Single Best Value Award

Price:   $260 List
$260 from Amazon


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The Baby Jogger City Mini Single is a lightweight compact option that earned high scores for maneuverability and weight and folded size and has a very budget friendly price of $260. The City Mini Single impressed for pushing and turning considering it has the dual front wheel design that we are not huge fans of. In fact, it earned the highest score in the metric for products with this design. It offers good control going up and down stairs and curbs and we were able to push it one handed on most flat surfaces. The City Mini Single has an easy to use harness and recline adjustment pull, as well as a nice size storage bin and canopy. The canopy has a rare design with 2 peek-a-boo windows and a nicely padded seat for added passenger comfort. While it only has shocks on the front wheel and a stationary handlebar, it is still a nice quality product for a very good price.


Best Value Winner


Britax B-Agile 3


The Britax B-Agile 3 Best Value Award

Price:   $270 List
$216 from Amazon
Sale - 20% Off


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The Britax B-Agile 3 is not the least expensive option in the group with a list price of $280, but it is often the cheapest Best Value winner depending on sale prices that often get as low as $216. Britax is a well-known brand that offers many popular quality products and the B-Agile 3 is one of them. This lightweight product has a very easy fold that can be done on the fly and is small enough to fit in most trunks or be carried with ease. The rubber covered handlebar feels good in hand and is an adequate height for most parents. It scored well in ease of setup and safety with brakes that are easy to set and release and have very little play when engaged. This budget friendly option is a nice looking, simple product that can be used with Britax Click & Go infant car seats and others with adapters. Parents will be pleased with this Britax stroller.

Best for Versatility


UPPAbaby Vista


The UPPAbaby Vista Top Pick Award

Price:   $860 List
$840 from Amazon


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The UPPAbaby Vista earned the top score in this review, but thanks to its $820 price tag and heavier size it missed winning an Editors' Choice award. But, the truth of the matter is it is a very nice option that all the testers really enjoyed using and loved for its versatility of seating and features. The fact that it is easy to use, easy to push and can accommodate 3 children at one time made it a Top Pick for versatility. The Vista comes standard with a bassinet and toddler seat. The frame can accept up to 2 UPPAbaby infant car seats at the same time, or 2 toddler seats, and other variations including several using the bassinet. The seats can sit forward and back or are reversible. This makes the Vista one of the most versatile in the review.

The Vista is easy to adjust even on the fly.
The Vista is easy to adjust even on the fly.
In addition to the versatility of seating configurations, it also has the largest storage bin in the group with a 30 pound weight limit. It sports a giant canopy with a kick out visor and easy to see through peek-a-boo window. Due to it's larger than average size, the Vista may not be the best option for fitting in a trunk, but it is a great option for walking out your front door and hitting the city streets for errands and adventure. This product will grow with your family and be useable for years longer than most of the group thanks to its versatility.


Related topics:


Analysis and Test Results


A new baby brings so many wonderful life-changing elements, enough that a stroller, in the big picture, seems a minor afterthought. But of the baby gear decisions you'll need to make, deciding which one to buy is often one of the most vexing. And for good reason…

Your local baby gear retailer will proudly display a line-up of dozens of competing products. Sorting out which one is right for you, especially for the first time parent, is a real challenge. To make matters worse, a bit of online touring will reveal dozens of other enticing products that may not be carried at your local retailer, so it's tough to compare them on equal ground.

Our advice is to think of a strolling product as a long-term investment. Unlike many baby products that will cease being useful within a year, a quality product should serve you on a daily basis for years to come. Given the duration of time you'll be using it, this is a decision where you may want to indulge your obsessive baby-must-have-the-best mania and invest a little more time and money in your decision.

The good news here is that the top performing products in our tests were not the most expensive. The best for you and your baby, based on our tests, can be found at a variety of price points, from around the $250-$500 range (including several Best Value and one of our Editors' Choice winners), to a stellar high end product close to $800 (worth a look if you can afford to consider something in that price range). The most expensive product in this review is closer to $1,200 and it did not score well in our tests.
Twenty one of the most popular strollers on the market  including our award winners (up front).
Twenty one of the most popular strollers on the market, including our award winners (up front).

We started off our selection process by looking at more than 150 competing products, and eventually narrowed them down to 21 finalists that went through our entire side-by-side comparison process for everything from maneuverability to ease of use and safety concerns. The finalists were selected based on their quality, unique innovations, and/or popularity. Our goal in this review is to provide you with very practical and detailed comparison information on the products most likely to be on your short-list.

Where to Get More Information


To augment this review, we've provided an article chock-full-o-tips to help you find the perfect product titled, How to Choose the Best Stroller. You can also refer to our How We Test article to learn more about our testing process.

The Search for Perfect Strolling


If Steve Jobs could come back to design the ideal strolling product, it would be light as a feather, almost effortless to push, turn on a dime with a single finger, store everything in your grocery cart, and fold to the size of a wallet with the use of only one hand. Unfortunately, none of the products we tested meet this fantasy. The reality is that the lightest products in our test were great for getting in/out of the car, but the more full-featured products were the best for long strolls and maneuverability despite being a bit heavier and bulkier.

Strolling needs change significantly from the first 6 months to the period between 7 months to 3+ years, so much so that the ideal solution for many parents may be not one product, but two. One for each of these two very different age ranges. While that may sound odd, hear us out on this one.

Pick your Infant Car Seat First
As we explain in more detail in our Infant Car Seat Review, we recommend that you choose your infant car seat first, then consider a strolling product after that. The car seat decision is frankly more important, and while compatibility will eventually be a consideration, it is a minor one from our point of view. Best to narrow down to a few car seats, and then use strolling compatibility to help you make your final decision.

Consider Waiting on a Standard-size Product Purchase for 6 Months


Because babies do not have sufficient neck strength to hold their head up until 6 months of age, we advocate breaking your decision making into two stages:
  • Infant Car Seat Era (birth to 6 months) — During this period, the best solution from
    A car seat frame stroller  like the Editors' Choice Chicco Keyfit Caddy  is light and compact. Weighing only 11.5 lbs  it makes strolling with an infant car seat simple  fast  and effortless.
    A car seat frame stroller, like the Editors' Choice Chicco Keyfit Caddy, is light and compact. Weighing only 11.5 lbs, it makes strolling with an infant car seat simple, fast, and effortless.
    our point-of-view is a light and simple strategy focused on keeping baby in the car seat for easy transfer between driving and strolling. We recommend using car seat adapters, or the lighter weight and smaller folded size Car Seat Frame product for strolling in this period. All the standard-size products offer the ability for the seat to recline, but most do not recline flat enough for safe infant sleeping (the safety standard for a bassinet is to recline flatter than 10 degrees, and only a few standard-size seats recline this flat). Higher incline angles increase the risk of suffocation, as baby's mouth and nose can become pressed up against the side and block their airway (always use the safety harness to mitigate this risk, even when baby is reclined). In comparison, a car seat frame stroller provides a safe cradle for baby, including a safety harness that will meet your needs very well in the first 6-12 months. Car seat frame products are relatively low-cost, light in weight, fold to a compact size, and can be re-sold afterwards. See our related, Car Seat Frame Stroller Review, for more information.

Give your baby adequate tummy time
Make sure your baby gets enough tummy time when they are awake and observed on your lap or on their tummy. Too much time in infant car seats, swings, strollers and bouncers can increase the risk of "flat head syndrone" (technically known as Positional Plagiocephaly). In addition, infant car seats, strollers, swings, infant carriers and infant slings should not be used for routine sleep because they can put infants in a position that places them at risk for suffocation or airway obstruction.
  • Standard-size Strolling Era (7 months to 3+ years) — Most people will stroll extensively for the first 2 years and continue to use it less frequently up to 4 years. By six months, most babies have gained sufficient neck strength to hold their head up, and once that milestone is met, a full-size stroller comes into play.
    A full-size product  such as the Editors' Choice winning BOB Revolution Flex  is easier to push  maneuver  and offers great storage with increased durability.
    A full-size product, such as the Editors' Choice winning BOB Revolution Flex, is easier to push, maneuver, and offers great storage with increased durability.
    This period is the larger portion of time, normally lasting 3-4 years. Given the long period of time in which a full-size product will be frequently used, we advocate focusing your decision on the time frame after 6 months. Take a moment to imagine how you will likely be strolling when baby is 1, 2 or 3 years old. How will your strolling habits and needs change over time? Will you walk mostly around the neighborhood? Then a heavier standard-size product like the Editors' Choice winners the BOB Revolution Flex or UPPAbaby Cruz, might be perfect for you. But, if more of your strolling involves a drive first, then a light and compact product like the Britax B-Agile 3 or the BOB Motion will deserve a close look. Most parents find themselves taking longer, more adventurous strolls as baby gets older, often with more gear in tow. If you will be travelling prior to hitting your strolling destinations, then you may want to skip full-size products entirely and consider a lightweight umbrella strolling product instead. Some people get both types for added convenience. If you decide to opt for a lightweight product for travel needs, then you still might enjoy a heavier standard-size for near home, or an option that you can jog or get off the beaten path with.

Consider "Travel System" Bundles with Skepticism


Many new parents are tempted to buy the so-called "Travel System" bundles, that combine a low cost strolling product with a car seat. At face value, a travel system bundle seems simple, convenient, and economic. Yet, those that go down this road often regret the decision later. Why? Because the travel system products are often bulky and heavy for the first 6-12 months, especially when compared to a Car Seat Frame Product, and less capable for the period between years 1-3+ compared to competitors. In addition, the products bundled in travel systems may be a step down in quality from versions sold separately, and may differ in materials, features, and safety. We encourage new parents to consider the car seat and strolling product decisions separately, and only buy a travel system bundle if both the car seat and the included strolling product meet your needs separately.

This Review Focuses on Standard-size Products


In this review, we focus on 21 top products that are well suited to be your main go-to product for every day strolling for up to 3+ years. These are the most popular types of products for strolling and are well designed for daily use, boast a durable design, adequate storage, and are still reasonable to manage in terms of weight and folded size. Each of these options also offers car seat adapters, either with the base product or as an accessory (sold separately), so you could use them with an infant car seat from birth. However, keep in mind that most of these products combined with a car seat adapter will be significantly heavier and bulkier compared to using a Car Seat Frame Stroller during the first year.

RELATED: our Infant Car Seat Review

Criteria for Evaluation


We combined an extensive real world hands-on testing process with specific lab tests to compare each product's performance side-by-side.
We combined an extensive real world hands-on testing process with specific lab tests to compare each product's performance side-by-side.
In testing each product we focused on 6 key scoring metrics, with ease-of-use and maneuverability being the most highly weighted and extensively scrutinized categories in our evaluation process. Our ratings were based on a combination of real-world testing (i.e. strolling with babies, toddlers and young children), and extensive 30 side-by-side in–house lab tests in which each product was rated in comparison to other competitors.

Ease of Use


The UPPAbaby Cruz has all the right features that helped earn it a top score for ease of use.
The UPPAbaby Cruz has all the right features that helped earn it a top score for ease of use.
From our point of view, ease of use is measured based on the features you will need to use repeatedly every day. For example, the available storage options and how easy they are to use and how much they can carry. Similarly, we looked at sun shades and whether or not they cover baby and how easy they are to use and if they offer a peek-a-boo window or additional ventilation. These kinds of features will comprise the bulk of your experience with a product and their ability to perform as desired and expected will be the difference between a product you enjoy using and one you'd like to kick to the curb.

The Vista is a pleasure to use.
The Cruz offers many features that make it a winner for ease of use.
 
In our tests, the UPPAbaby Vista and the UPPAbaby Cruz both earned top scores for ease of use. What separated these two products from the rest was how well they executed the daily features parents use the most; both offered high maximum storage capacities, and the largest canopies in the review. They both offer adjustable leg rests, easy to use recline mechanisms, and simple but useful indicators to help parents ensure the seat is adjusted properly.


The UPPAbaby products are priced a little on the high side with the Cruz coming in around $500 and the Vista closer to $800. Pleasantly, though the BOB Motion has an ease of use score just 2 points below the UPPAbaby products and costs closer to $280. It shares a similar design to many in the group and is the most compact option when folded in the group. This makes it very easy to place in the trunk of a car and manage on public transportation. In addition, it can be folded with one hand, self-stands, and comes with a carry strap.
The Motion has a giant canopy and nice storage.
The Motion has a giant canopy and nice storage.

The top three all lacked nice-to-have amenities such as a parent tray or child tray, but these can be obtained as options for around $50 extra. We like having these convenience features and recommend you consider the cost of buying them in your purchase decision.

The storage basket on the Origami is small and sort of useless for holding a normal sized diaper bag.
The storage basket on the Origami is small and sort of useless for holding a normal sized diaper bag.
The worst performers in our ease of use tests were the Quinny Buzz Xtra and the 4moms Origami. Both suffered from smaller sun shades, awkward design choices, smaller storage bins, and are large when folded and are relatively heavy. The 4moms includes parent tray and lots of extra gadgets, but its performance overall in our tests was poor compared to the competition.

Maneuverability


To test maneuverability we put each product through a torture test of turns and corners over a variety of surface types including pavement, gravel, grass, snow/ice and dirt. A test that was particularly revealing was navigating crowded supermarkets. To create a test to compare each product in exactly the same way, we created the crowed-supermarket-from-hell simulator which is a multi-surface obstacle course, containing all kinds of tight corners and real-world maneuver challenges we observed in actual strolling situations. We then scored each product on ease of pushing, ease of turning, and performance over various paved and unpaved surfaces. In addition, we performed stair and curb tests, taking each repeatedly up and down curbs and steps, and subsequently rating each on the relative ease of navigation compared to the rest of the group.
A relatively small width  larger tires with a quality swivel  such as the BOB's (shown above) help simplify navigating narrow supermarket aisles.
A relatively small width, larger tires with a quality swivel, such as the BOB's (shown above) help simplify navigating narrow supermarket aisles.

The top performers for maneuverability all share a 3-wheel design and all have larger rubber tires. The top scoring product, the BOB Revolution Flex, earned a 9 of 10 and features the pneumatic (air-filled) tires, adjustable suspension and tracking, and a lockable swivel front wheel. The second place options scored 8s and included the Mountain Buggy Swift, the Orbit Baby O2, Baby Jogger City Mini GT, and the Baby Trend Expedition. All of these options performed well in our obstacle course and managed rougher terrain better than the competition. The Revolution, Baby Trend, and Orbit also claim jogging capability with the Expedition winning a Best Value award in our jogging product review, and the Revolution earning 5 out of 5 stars in the same review.

The Flex (left) and the Expedition (right) are the only two strollers in this review that are listed as having jogging capabilities.
The Flex (left) and the Expedition (right) are the only two strollers in this review that are listed as having jogging capabilities.
The Revolution, the Swift, and the Expedition all provide an impressive combination of easy pushing, smooth ride, and fast effortless turns. Well-fitting quality construction made these three more responsive and easier to guide through tight aisles and turns. Bumps in the sidewalk were handled with ease by the larger air-filled tires with minimal impact passed on to Baby. The BOB was noticeably better than both the Expedition and the Swift due to especially high quality construction, having the largest wheels, and an especially smooth ride over bumps thanks to very effective shocks.

While the Baby Jogger brand has the word "Jogger" in the name, most of the products they make are not intended for use while jogging. This is true of all three Baby Joggers in this review. Parents should not attempt to jog with these options as they do not have the design features that make jogging possible to do safety.

The City Mini Single has an impressive maneuverability score for a double wheeled front stroller with plastic wheels.
The City Mini Single has an impressive maneuverability score for a double wheeled front stroller with plastic wheels.
It is worth noting that most of the high scorers were top performers on both paved and unpaved surfaces. On pavement their large wheels made for very easy pushing, occasional single-handed turning, and they excelled in smaller spaces. When we went over grass or gravel in the park, their advantages were even more pronounced. Smaller wheel products with solid tires got bogged down off pavement and on rough surfaces, often to relatively unworkable levels. They also transmit bumps and jarring shocks more directly to Baby because the plastic wheels do not absorb the energy and they often lacked suspension or adjustable suspension. Yet the larger rubber tire, 3-wheelers, took these off-road surfaces in stride. If your strolling will often involve traveling over grass, gravel or dirt, then maneuverability should be a key factor in your decision making process. The City Mini GT is a little bit of an anomaly in this metric. It performed well in our tests, but has smaller wheels than the other top options. The smaller front wheel design makes it not as good at traversing rougher terrain as the larger wheel products, but still far superior over the options that have plastic wheels, double front wheel designs, and no suspension.

The plastic wheels on the Bravo are partly to blame for the difficulty we had pushing it.
The plastic wheels on the Bravo are partly to blame for the difficulty we had pushing it.
The worst performers in our maneuverability tests were the 4moms and the Chicco Bravo LE. These both use foam filled plastic wheels, under 7" in diameter, on the front and less than 8" in diameter in back. They both have a 4 wheel design, with the 4moms design oddly placing the front wheels far out in front of the frame where they caught on every obstacle in our test course. We found turning these through our obstacle course was harder, and travel over bumpy and/or non-paved surfaces frustrating, or worse. In addition, the 4moms product felt "loose" when turning, meaning there was flex in the frame when we pushed and turned (possibly a byproduct of the self-folding design), which made it less responsive and required more effort to effectively turn. The Chicco has the old style wheels with a bushing and press on endcap that most of the high end competition is moving away from. In our experience, this type of construction and flimsy wheels combine for poor performance and limited longevity.

Quality


The Flex earned the highest score for quality tying with the Vista.
The Flex earned the highest score for quality tying with the Vista.
Many parents believe that quality is directly related to price, and while this assumption isn't entirely wrong, we found that many of the mid-range products offer quality on par, or better than, the most expensive options in the group. This is good news for parents hoping to find a high performing quality product without breaking the bank.

The highest scorers for quality are the Revolution (with a price of $500) and the Vista ($799) each with an 8 of 10. Both options combine quality parts, made of high end materials, with a fit and finish that stands apart from the crowd with a relatively wide price gap between the two. In general, products scored higher in this metric if they offered comfortable and durable fabric, pneumatic or foam filled rubber tires, and sleek frames with smooth finishes. The lowest scoring products in the group earned 4s; these were the 4moms ($850), the Baby Trend and Graco Aire 3 ($180); these two products once again show the wide range of price for similar quality. These two share similar plastic wheels, stationary height handlebars, and a lot of flex in the frames with multiple connection joints. The Best Value winners, the BOB Motion and Baby Jogger City Mini Single both earned 6, which is above average, and have budget friendly price tags under $280.

Safety


Studies published by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), who both analyze US hospital injury databases, identify falling injuries as the most common safety issue with strolling representing more than half of the 46,200 strolling-related injuries between 2008-2011. Tip-over related injuries were the second most common. Experts conclude that use of a restraining harness would have prevented many of these injuries.

To score safety we started off examining basic safety features such as harness systems and parking brakes. We then looked at tip-over issues including back and sideways tip-over. We also explored stability risks and performance going up or down steep curbs, steps, and across angled and uneven surfaces. We concluded with the cup holders and whether or not they had a risk of losing their contents on baby's head.
The Select has the highest score for safety in our tests.
The Select has the highest score for safety in our tests.

The top scoring product for safety was the Baby Jogger City Select with an 8 of 10. Seven other products came in second place with 7s, and included award winners UPPAbaby Vista, BOB Motion, and Britax B-Agile 3. These options all scored well in our safety tests offering great stability, top notch braking systems, and quality 5-point harness systems that were easier to use than most of the competition. The bad news is that a few of these are on the heavy side; luckily the Britax is one of the lightest in the group at 17.5 pounds, and the Motion is the smallest when folded at around 5,500 cubic inches.

One of 30 different stroller lab tests  our sideways tip-over angle test shown above gives us a measure of which strollers are more tippy than others
One of 30 different stroller lab tests, our sideways tip-over angle test shown above gives us a measure of which strollers are more tippy than others

The lowest scoring products in our safety ratings were the City Mini GT that earned a 3 of 10 score. This product had relatively good marks for most of the safety tests, but failed in one that gave us pause and great concern over its overall safety.

We found the City Mini GT scored poorly in one very specific safety area, that of backward tip-over risk
The GT has a significant safety concern; when the seat back is fully reclined it has a tendency to fall backwards if baby moves too high up the seat back.
The GT has a significant safety concern; when the seat back is fully reclined it has a tendency to fall backwards if baby moves too high up the seat back.
  • In our back tip test performed fairly well requiring an above average amount of weight of around 27 pounds on the handle before it tipped back with a 20 lb. test baby in the harness. Again we would not advise hanging a diaper bag or groceries from the handle, so this shouldn't be a concern at all if you use the product as advised. However, there is an even more serious back-tip issue we observed when the GT seat was fully reclined, as it might be for a sleeping infant or toddler. If an active infant, toddler or child managed to work their way up to the rear of the reclined seat, we found the product could back-tip quickly, dangerously exposing baby's head to a fall injury. Unlike most competing products, the GT reclines nearly flat making it possible for an unharnessed baby to work their way to the back of the reclined seat. Normally a flat recline is a nice feature, one that allows safer sleeping and can work much like a bassinet. But in the case of the GT the rear of the reclined seat is cantilevered well behind the rear wheel axle which creates a tip-over risk if baby moves to the top end of the seat. When we placed a 10 lb. weight in the rear of the fully reclined seat, the GT would repeatedly tip over backwards. No other product in our test could be back-tipped as easily. In our opinion, using the GT with the fully reclined seat without carefully harnessing the baby to prevent them from getting to the rear of the seat, is too dangerous. Perhaps if the seat back were shorter, or the recline angle not as flat, this Baby Jogger would have scored more on par with its siblings in this review.

Weight and Folded Size


To test weight and folded size we performed our own measurements. This proved important as we discovered that some manufacturers provided weights or folded size that excluded components such as wheels or detachable seats. Our measurements all include wheels and seats. We did not include items like bassinets or rain covers which only some products include. We compared information on overall measurements as well as cubic inches.

The folded Orbit  the largest in the group at 19 514 cubic inches  compared to the BOB Motion  the most compact fold in the group at 5 817 cubic inches.
The folded Orbit, the largest in the group at 19,514 cubic inches, compared to the BOB Motion, the most compact fold in the group at 5,817 cubic inches.
The best scoring products for weight and folded size was a 5-way tie, all scoring an 8 of 10, and included several products that won awards: Britax B-Agile 3, City Mini Single and the BOB Motion. The Motion is the smallest in folded size at 21.9"W x 10.1"H x 26.3"L and 5,817 cubic inches. However, the B-Agile 3 and the City Mini Single were both lighter with a weight of 17.5 pounds compared to the Motion's weight of 23.1 pounds. The City Min and B-Agile 3 are closer to 6,500 cubic inches, so the overall size might not be as noticeable as 4 extra pounds, but this might depend on how small or trunk space is or how much weight you can carry.


The worst scoring product on weight and folded size was the Orbit Baby O2 which scored a disappointing 1 of 10. Big, and bulky compared to competitors, the folded size of the Orbit was huge at 23.9"W x 21.6"H x 37.8"L, and 19,514 cubic inches. This is significantly larger the Motion's low 5,817 cubic inches. It is also ridiculously heavy at 37.2 pounds, which is twice as much as the lowest weights in the group. If you imagine taking two extra-large suitcases, stacking them up on each other and then put your purse at the end, you'd have a pretty good picture of the folded dimensions. Making matters worse, the Orbit has to be taken apart before you can fold it, resulting in two pieces that you will have to carry if you are on foot or find a place for in your trunk. The average for the group is closer to 11,500 cubic inches and 24 pounds, with the Revolution and Cruz coming in closer to these values.

Ease of Setup


Ease of setup was the least weighted category, comprising only 5% of the overall score because setup is just a one-time task. In this category we looked at the time to set up, as well as the relative complexity to do so, and how useful the corresponding manual was in helping us with assembly.

The Cruz is the easiest to put together in the group   scoring a perfect 10 out of 10.
The Cruz is the easiest to put together in the group , scoring a perfect 10 out of 10.
The easiest to assemble is the UPPAbaby Cruz, with a perfect 10 of 10 score. It took just over 4 and a half minutes to put the Cruz together with a simple 7 step start up guide, and we found it is so intuitive you might not even need the manual. Close behind is the Revolution, Britax, and Vista, all of which set up in less about 5 and a half minutes with great documentation and an easy step-by-step process.

The worst to set-up is the Bugaboo Bee 3, which took us more than 23 minutes to set-up, due to far more component assembly than the competition and documentation so poorly designed that we put different portions together incorrectly.

We were disappointed to find many of the more expensive products ($500-$1,200) were the hardest to set-up, due in part to poor documentation and sometimes a lot of parts. These include the Bugaboo Cameleon 3, Quinny Buzz Xtra, 4moms Origami, Baby Jogger City Select, and Bumbleride Indie 4. Poor documentation was a common theme. We find the combination of high price tag and poor documentation to be particularly distasteful. Great documentation is largely a function of an investment decision by the manufacturer to create clear, easy-to-understand documentation in each language they consider a target market. In our experience, poor documentation typically took an "international approach" where vague illustrations without text were in one part of the manual, and small text in each language referring to those illustrations was in a different section. For products retailing for $500 to $1,200 we find cutting cost in the documentation to be unacceptable.

Car Seat Compatibility


The Cruz offers a few different car seat adapters  we tested the frame for the Chicco Keyfit 30.
The UPPAbaby Mesa is easy to attach to the Cruz and it feels stable once installed.
 
The photos above show the UPPAbaby Cruz coupled with the Chicco Keyfit 30 (left) and the UPPAbaby Mesa (right).

Each product we looked at is compatiable with different infant car seats and some are light enough to work as a possible stand in for a car seat frame product. A few of the products are really restricted in the seats you can use, like the Orbit and Baby Trend Expedition that only work with the same brand seats, while others have a lot of flexibility in brands and models that will work, including the Chicco Keyfit 30, Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35, and the UPPAbaby Mesa that all one awards in our infant car seat review.

In our infant car seat review we encourage parents to choose their car seat first and then find the best strolling product to go with it. We also think most parents should first purchase a car seat frame product for the first 6-9 months because they are easier to use, lighter, cheaper, and can give parents a better idea of how they will be using the next strolling product. However, all that aside when you are ready to choose your main strolling product, which infant seats are compatiable is kind of a big deal if you plan to use the two together.

The Britax adapters are easy to install and use.
The car seat adapter frame for the B-Agile 3 clicks into the Britax adapters and the car seats click onto the frame.
 
The photos above show two car seat connectors types, the snap in connectors (left) and the frame "click on" connectors (left).

We tested the seats with the compatible car seats we had in the lab and ordered an adapter for the Chicco Keyfit 30 if one was available. We used the Chicco because it was compatible with the most products in the review, and it is an award winning seat with a reasonable price tag. For the most part the products worked best combined with the same brand name seat, i.e. the UPPAbaby Vista and Cruz with the UPPAbaby Mesa. However, many of them worked equally well with the Chicco, and a few even seemed more stable or easier to install.

The BOB Revolution uses a frame for car seat attachment. The car seat clicks on to the frame and the red side straps attach to the car seat in a 2 step installation procedure. We prefer 1 step click in connections.
The BOB Revolution uses a frame for car seat attachment. The car seat clicks on to the frame and the red side straps attach to the car seat in a 2 step installation procedure. We prefer 1 step click in connections.
Some seats connected using a click in method, while others required click and strap in steps. On the whole we prefer the click only variety because they are easier, more foolproof, and sometimes feel more stable. That being said the strap isn't necessarily more difficult, it is just another step in the process and we worry parents will not follow through with a second step which could lead to potential safety issues. If you choose a product that has a strap, like the BOB Revolution we encourage you to always use the straps. Pairing your infant seat of choice with the best strolling option possible is the goal of combining the two reviews to create a travel system that will work best for you.

Conclusion


The twenty one products we tested in our review.
The twenty one products we tested in our review.
Is there one right choice for everyone? We don't think so. Your needs will vary from others due to your strolling habits, travel needs, and budget. In this review our goal is to share relative differences we saw between top competing products, so that you can make the most informed decision for you and your baby.

We hope that between our awards and ratings we can help you narrow down the field to a few top contenders. We strive to provide enough detail to help make it significantly simpler for you to find the exact right product for your family's budget and needs. If you still aren't sure what item is best for you, and feel none of the top performers offer exactly what you are looking for, please read our Buying Advice for further guidance on what to consider and how to narrow your options, and review our comparison chart where you will be able to narrow the field based on what features and performance metrics mean the most to you.
Juliet Spurrier, MD, Wendy Schmitz, and BabyGearLab Staff
Helpful Buying Tips
The BOB Motion is a nice budget friendly stroller.
 How to Choose the Best Stroller

by Juliet Spurrier, MD, Wendy Schmitz, and BabyGearLab Staff

Unbiased.