Bumbleride Indie 4 Review
Our Analysis and Test Results
The chart below shows a comparison of the overall scores for each stroller tested in this review. The Indie 4 is shown in blue.
The sections below offer further information on how the Indie performed in our tests for each metric.
Ease of Use
The Bumbleride earned a 4 of 10 for ease of use, which is below average and only 1 point higher than the lowest score of 3 earned by the Quinny Buzz Xtra. The high for this metric is an 8 shared by the UPPAbaby Vista and the UPPAbaby Cruz.
The Bumbleride has a large under seat storage bin that fit our large diaper bag (though just barely) during testing. The maximum allowable weight is not listed for this stroller, so we aren't sure if there isn't one or if they haven't determined it yet. Ease of access is average, and can only be managed from the back of the stroller where it is located far under the handle requiring most parents to squat down for easy access. In addition to the under seat bin, there is also a zippered pocket on the back of the canopy. This is a good spot to put your keys or mobile phone, but it isn't that great and won't hold much more.
The photos above show the Indie with the sunshade closed and open.The Bumbleride has a medium sized canopy with an SPF of 45+ listed by the manufacturer. It does offer additional ventilation for baby and a peek-a-boo window for parents who want to take a look at baby while strolling. The window is small and made of mesh, but has a nice cover with magnetic closures that are silent, as opposed to those made of hook and loop closures that are not only more difficult to use but are loud and could wake a sleeping baby when used. The shade has no additional protection for the low sun by way of a bump out or visor, and while you can lower the shade to block some sun, it will leave the back of the seat exposed if reclined, which isn't great.
The Bumbleride comes with a single cup holder, that is open, and there is a small zippered pocket on the canopy. When tested the cup holder is compatible with a baby bottle, water bottle, and sippy cup. The cup holder is removable for easy cleaning. When we tested this holder with taller or heavy bottles the cupholder had the tendency to rotate and the bottles would fall out. The stroller does not have a child's tray or storage for children, but does offer a removable bumper bar. This is not uncommon for the group, but some did offer either a small pocket or a simple tray.This stroller offers an adjustable leg rest and foot rest. The leg rest is padded, and the foot rest is wide and made of what feels like a durable rubber material. This leg rest and foot pad scored well in our review compared to the competition with only 4 strollers scoring higher.
The seat back on the Bumbleride reclines using two hands. It has adjustable straps that allow a recline range from 17.2 degrees from flat to 59.1 degrees. The straps do not slide that easily, and in our tests some testers had to use two hands on each side to move them, making the process complicated and hard to manage with a baby in the seat. We aren't the only ones that found the recline awkward and hard to manage; several online commenters and reviewers also felt it was difficult to operate and were frustrated by how hard it was to lower.
Other conveniences included with this stroller are a bassinet and car seat adapter bar. This stroller offers no tray or storage for kids like some of the competition did.
The Indie 4 earned a 6 of 10 for maneuverability; this is average for the group. The high score for the group is a 9. The Indie front wheels are lockable for easier maneuvering on rougher terrain.
The ease of pushing and turning on pavement isn't great with the Indie 4. It isn't terrible, but we wonder if the three-wheeled version might turn tighter. It is less responsive than the Revolution and either of the City Mini stroller types. We were able to manage our whole course pushing this stroller with one hand, but it took some muscle and effort that some of the competition did not, and was much easier with two hands. It makes relatively wider turns than a lot of the other strollers but is still surprisingly responsive to our movements. Managing small bumps and carpet did not make much of a difference for ease of pushing this stroller. This stroller is also not too bad on rougher terrain, but not as good as the other jogging type strollers.
For quality, the Bumbleride earned a 6 of 10, tying with many of the other strollers we reviewed. The high for the metric is 8, with the UPPAbaby Vista and the BOB Revolution Flex tying.
The fabric on the Bumbleride is disappointing compared to the competition. It has a rough canvas on the outer edge of the seat with a smoother feeling, with more tightly woven material in the middle. It feels like it would be difficult to clean and the rough edges would be uncomfortable on bare skin. The outside of the canopy is made of the same material as the seat edge and feels durable. The footrest is made of a flexible textured rubber that might leave dirt in the textured areas. The peek-a-boo window is made of a loosely woven mesh that feels more plastic than many of the others in the review. It didn't snag easily in our review despite it feeling like it would. The under seat basket is made of a stiff and slick fabric with mesh sides (it feels different than the peek-a-boo window material) and feels very strong.
The frame feels fairly solid, but it also feels cheap considering the higher price tag of this stroller. The handlebar has some flex which makes the stroller and frame feel less sturdy than it might otherwise. It does not have the best fit and finish out of the group and looks like a slept in pair of pajamas. There is a lot going on with all the parts of the frame, and there is a lot of play in the frame when you push it or wiggle it from side to side.
This stroller has pneumatic wheels that feel genuinely solid even if they are smaller than some of the competition and definitely smaller than most of the jogging style options.The handlebar is adjustable in height from 26.5 to 44.5 inches. Our testers did not like how the handle feels in the hand compared to the other strollers in the review. In addition, when the handle is at a good height for taller users it puts the user's feet too close to the stroller and resulted in us kicking the brake while walking.
The Indie 4 has a fairly comfortable ride all things considered with 4 wheels shocks and a sling style seat. It could be more comfortable if the suspension was adjustable, or the seat was less stiff and the padding was thicker. However, it did score higher in our tests than most.
This stroller earned a 6 of 10 for safety, which is the average for the group. The high is an 8 for the Baby Jogger City Select.
The Indie 4 has single action brakes that are easy to set and only average to release. The brakes are not sandal foot friendly because you need to use the top of your foot to release the brake and it is stiff. The sliding resistance of the brakes are good and the play is 0.5 inches which is good.
The cup holder is 4 inches deep and is placed high and to the left of the seat. There is a moderate cup holder safety concern given the location of the cup holder above the baby's head, but the side location means it is unlikely that a falling object will land on baby's head.
This stroller has a 5 point harness that is fairly easy to put on, but somewhat harder to take off. The harness is fairly easy to adjust. The buckle on this stroller is the same buckle as the Baby Jogger products except this one has the Bumbleride logo on the button. This buckle snaps together pretty easily, but the buckle has a button on the front and a knob on the backside, and during testing, we had a tendency to squeeze both at the same time, and it won't work this way. It will take some practice and patience to work this buckle.
Weight and Folded Size
The Indie 4 earned a 6 of 10 for weight and folded size which is about average for the group. The stroller weighs 24.1 pounds which is on the heavier side for this group of products, and it measures at 25"W x 15.3"H x 31.8"L and 12,164 cubic inches. The folded size is larger than the average in our tests. It would be easier for most parents to lug a smaller stroller. The Britax B-Agile 3 and the Baby Jogger City Mini both weigh about 17.5 pounds which is much easier to lift and carry around if necessary.
The Bumbleride scored relatively poorly on folding. It requires two hands to fold in a process that takes five steps. We consider it one of the more difficult strollers to fold in the group and is not one most parents will likely want to do on the fly in the city. It is better than the strollers that require the seat to be removed, but it isn't as easy as some of the others. It folds similarly to the Revolution but it isn't as easy or intuitive. You must have the belly bar down to fold the stroller, and you will have to compress it significantly to use the automatic fold lock, which sort of makes it more of a manual lock than automatic. Unfolding the stroller is easier than folding, but it's still only average for the group, using two hands and three steps.
The stroller does self-stand, sort of. While it claims to and the pictures show it standing, we had difficulty with this and found that the wheels and handlebar need to be adjusted just so in order for it to stand without falling over, and even then it will sort of tilt to the side on the bumper on the handlebar that is there to protect the foam cover.
The Bumbleride does offer a carry handle, but it is in a poor location for easy carrying. The handle is too high, and you have to hold your arm raised and out to the side which is uncomfortable and awkward. Holding your arm out and bent for a prolonged period isn't easy, and doing it carrying a large 24-pound stroller is even worse and potentially impossible for some. You might be able to use the handle for lifting up and putting the stroller somewhere, but you won't be walking with it, at least not very far.
Ease of Setup
The Bumbleride is harder to put together than at least half of the strollers in the group, and it ranks close to the bottom in the competition. It took us a little over 13 minutes to put this stroller together from start to finish. Only three strollers in the group took longer to setup than this one. Despite the difficulty, we had during setup the documentation is very good. It has nice clear pictures and good explanations. There are more parts to put together than most of the competition, and you will need a wrench and pliers to tighten the bolts on the front wheels.
Car Seat Compatibility
The Indie 4 comes with a car seat adapter frame that works for Graco SnugRide Classic Connect 32, Graco Click Connect 40, Peg Perego Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30, Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35, Chicco Keyfit 30, Britax Chaperone. Both the Chicco Keyfit 30 and the Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35 score well in our best infant car seat review. Installing the adapter does not require the seat to be removed, so the adapter clicks in quickly and easily. Installing the infant seat onto the adapter is only about average for ease of use as is the removal of the seat. The foot of the car seat rests on the back of the stroller seat. This could be good or bad because you can adjust the recline of the car seat somewhat by adjusting the back of the stroller seat, but then you'll have to worry about the position of the back of the stroller seat. The seat installs with a strap-in method, which is not our favorite. We prefer a click-in connection because it is simpler, faster, and less likely to be done incorrectly. While there is nothing inherently wrong with the strap method, we worry some parents won't complete the process because it is more difficult than just pressing the seat onto a connection point. This particular setup also isn't that stable once it is installed. While we did not experience any false installations, where we thought it was installed but wasn't, it is still more difficult than a lot of the competition, and it requires a lot of jostling and manipulation to get it seated properly.
Additionally, there is another car seat frame bar that can be purchased separately for use with the Maxi Cosi Mico, Maxi Cosi Mico AP, Maxi Cosi Prezi, Nuna Pipa, Cybex Aton, Cybex Aton 2 or Cybex Aton Q car seat. We did not test this adapter.
There probably isn't a best application for this stroller. While it is an interesting option and it scored better than some of the others in the competition, it really didn't impress in our tests. Overall, no matter what you are looking for in a stroller there are better options available.
This stroller has a ticket price of $600. It is not one of the cheaper strollers on the market or in this review, but there are other strollers in our review at or near this price point. With the exception of one, all of the award winners in this review cost less, making the Indie 4 not the best value in the group.
The Bumbleride comes with a lot of accessories that make it feel like a good solution for an extended period of babyhood. The Indie 4 scored about average in most metrics, and below for ease of use and setup. It failed to impress in most tests and essentially blends into the background when compared to the rest of the group. While we wanted to like this stroller, it simply failed in comparison to the rest of the products. With so much competition on the market, parents have a lot of options to consider, and the details begin to matter more. This stroller did not measure up and given that most of the award winners cost less the Indie 4, it is not a stroller we recommend.
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