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Hands-on Gear Review
UPPAbaby Vista Combo Review
Price: $840 List | $839.99 from Amazon
Pros: Large storage, adjustable handle, coded brakes
Cons: Heavy, higher price, wide
Bottom line: The Cruz is similar, has easy car seat attachment, and costs less
The UPPAbaby Vista is a higher end stroller that works with several different brands of infant car seats and its own UPPAbaby Mesa. We tested this product with the Mesa as well as the Chicco Keyfit 30 and both worked well, with the Mesa having a slight edge for ease of attachment. The downside of using the Vista as a car seat stroller is its overall size and heft. This combination would be one of the heaviest in the group and is not something most new moms want to lift or carry, and in fact it might be prohibitively too heavy for mothers who've had a C-section. So while it has the largest storage bin and a great adjustable handlebar, it doesn't meet one of the key criteria we think parents should look for in a stroller/car seat combo.
RELATED: Our complete review of stroller and car seat combos
Analysis and Hands-on Test Findings
The Vista is a larger standard stroller with the silhouette of a smaller product. This stroller has an aluminum alloy frame, adjustable handlebar, rubber foam filled tires, and all around shocks. It works with 2 seats simultaneously or one seat with a car seat in several configurations. The standard attachment works for the native Mesa and adapters are available for several other car seat brands. The Vista is easy to maneuver, easy to fold, and self-stands and auto-locks. Unfortunately, it is fairly heavy compared to the competition, which may be a deal breaker to new mothers or those who've had a C-section.
Ease of Attaching Car Seat
The Vista car seat attachment varies depending on which car seat you've opted for. In our tests we used the native UPPAbaby Mesa and the award winning Chicco Keyfit 30. Keep in mind though that the Vista is fairly versatile and is also compatible with the Maxi Cosi Mico, Mico AP Mico NXT, Citi, Cabrio, CabrioFix, Nuna, Cybex Aton, Cybex Aton 2, Aton Q, and the Chicco Keyfit not 30.
UPPAbaby Cruz Combo and Peg Perego Booklet Combo for ease of attaching car seats to the stroller. The high score for this metric is the Bugaboo Bee 3 Combo with a score of 10 using the Chicco Keyfit 30 adapter that allows you to pretty much set the carrier into the loop and it clicks in place by itself. The low score for the group is 2 for the BOB Revolution Flex Combo with the Chicco. This installation required a little bit of finagling around the canopy and then pressure to get the seat locked in place. The added step of using the strap to secure the carrier sealed its fate as the lowest ranking combo in the review. Overall, the Vista has a 3rd place rank in the group for ease of car seat attachment, but thanks to ties there are 3 strollers (2 of which are frame strollers) that offer easier attachment.
Weight and Folded Size
The Vista is one of the heavier options in this review with a frame weight of 20.4 pounds without the included toddler seat that includes a canopy. This weight is the frame and storage bin alone. The Vista earned a score of 5 of 10 for the metric making it below average, but not the lowest score in the group. The heaviest stroller and lowest scoring is the Revolution Flex with a score of 3 and an overall weight of 26.5 pounds. The lightest in the group is the Baby Trend Snap-N-Go EX, a bare bones frame stroller that weighs around 10 pounds.
Unfortunately, it didn't score that well for commuting. Thanks to its larger size and weight it isn't the best for navigating small space or taking on public transport. It is likely to be in the way when you try to take it in a café, but it is one of the nicest seat heights for pulling baby up to the table and within arm's reach when you eat.
Baby Jogger City Mini Combo and the Bugaboo Bee, with the BOB Revolution earning a high for the group of 9. The low score for this group is a 3 for the Chicco Bravo LE Combo, which earned fewer points than all the frame strollers in the review.
For more details on the maneuverability of the Vista please check out our in-depth look of the Vista in our standard stroller review.
BOB Motion Combo, Britax B-Agile 3, and the Bugaboo Cameleon 3. The lowest score for safety in this review is a 4 shared by the Chicco Keyfit Caddy and the Peg Perego Booklet.
The Vista does not have cup holders so there is no cup holder safety concern. However, if you plan to purchase the cup holder accessory you need to be aware that items in high cup holders can and often do fall out and can possibly fall on baby.
While you will be using your infant car seat carrier on the stroller for the combo we are looking at in this review the seat that comes standard on this stroller does offer a 5 point harness that is easy to use. For more information on the safety features and testing of the harness and harness adjustment see our full review of the Vista in our standard stroller review.
Ease of Use
Chicco Liteway Plus Combo and the Graco Snugrider Elite.
The Vista has the largest storage bin in the group with a max load weight of 30 pounds. The only bin that comes close to this is the Cruz with a max weight of 25. The remainder of the group are all less than 11 pounds capacity with the Chicco Liteway allowing only 5 pounds of storage in its bin. A weight easily rivaled by most newborn diaper bags. The unfortunate thing about the basket is the cross bar that is curved up and travels across the middle of the basket. This effectively cuts the basket in half, and while you can still place items on top of this, it feels like a design flaw that limits the overall capacity of an otherwise really cool bin.
The Vista has a rather large canopy that we really liked in our standard stroller review. Unfortunately however when you remove the toddler seat you also remove the canopy as they are one unit. This means the only canopy for use in the stroller car seat combo is the canopy on the carrier. The upside is this decreases the overall weight of the stroller more than those that retain the canopy, but it still isn't enough to make the Vista a light weight option; meaning that in the end, given the higher overall weight, we wish there was still a useable canopy attached to the frame so we had extra coverage for the carrier.
The Vista has no other storage or accessory options to improve ease of use. There is a zippered storage pocket on the toddler seat, but this too is gone when you remove the seat for the car seat connection. Given how we generally aren't fans of any cup holders and most parent consoles lack true usability we don't think this is necessarily a downfall, and the super high max weight of the storage bin means you don't need other locations for storing most items.
Chicco Keyfit Caddy with a 3. The Caddy is a cheaper frame stroller and is not designed to be a long term use product so we can somewhat forgive its lower quality standards and materials. In our full review of the Vista you can find more information on the seat fabric and canopy, but for this review we didn't focus on those features as much given that they are no longer a part of the stroller/car seat combination.
The tires on the Vista are foam filled rubber with a dense plastic wheel. The wheel feels more solid than that on the UPPAbaby Cruz and the tires are made with a thicker rubber. The rubber will offer baby a little more comfort over rough terrain, but the foam filling means you'll never have a flat. While we like rubber tires and the idea of a no flat wheel, we think pneumatic tires usually offer more comfort for the passenger; the Vista does however have 4 wheel shocks, and even though they are not adjustable it does offer a little more comfort to the overall ride.
Ease of Setup
The UPPAbaby Vista is a great stroller though on the large size and potentially larger than most parents need. Parents attracted to the UPPAbaby name and quality will likely be drawn to this versatile stroller for the large storage bin and the 2 seat capacity, as well as the ability to attach a car seat. Because the UPPAbaby Cruz is very similar in form and function we think many parents will be equally happy with its lighter weight and won't miss what the Vista brings to the table that the Cruz does not. This makes the best application for the Vista as a 2 seater for parents who need to accommodate two or plan on having two stroller age children at some point.
UPPAbaby generally offers a nice quality product for a reasonable price given what you get and how well it is made. While the Vista is no exception to this, we do think the Cruz is likely more of a value for most parents because it is very similar, lighter, and costs over $300 less than the Vista. The Vista has a list price of $860, while the Cruz has a more modest $500 price tag.
Other Versions and Accessories
The Vista has a few different car seat adapters available should you have a different brand car seat. These are available for purchase through UPPAbaby and other vendors.
We also review the UPPAbaby Cruz Combo in this review and out standard stroller review. While we like the Vista, the Cruz is very similar and is likely a good stand in for most families that will save them around $300.
— BabyGearLab Review Team
Most recent user review: June 19, 2016
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