The BOB Rambler is sort of a smaller and lighter BOB Revolution Flex with slightly pared down features. with similar features and design on a smaller scale. we like that this jogger has a smaller footprint that allows it to negotiate crowded spaces with ease. We like the adjustable tracking and suspension that when coupled with the pneumatic tires and locking swivel front wheel create a stroller that is a pleasure to push, turn, and run with over a variety of different surfaces without missing a beat. This jogger has a lower price than most of the high-end competition, but it doesn't feel like it is sacrificing anything. If you have space and a large enough car to accommodate the folded Rambler, then this one should definitely make your short list of potential buys.
BOB Rambler Review
Pros: Easy to move, great runner, quality materials
Cons: Heavier, bulky
Compare to Similar Products
Our Analysis and Test Results
Beast of Burden, or BOB, was founded in California. In 1994, an airline mechanic and bicycle professional started with trailers for bikes but moved on to jogging strollers after starting families. The founders continue to offer new technology in 2005 with a locking swivel wheel that revolutionized the jogging stroller industry. BOB was purchased in 2011 by Britax.
The BOB Rambler (in blue) is a smaller jogger with everything you need to get the job done in style without frustration, which helped it earn a higher overall score and an award in this review.
The sections below outline the Rambler's test results compared to the competition and give you a better sense of why it scored as well as it did.
The BOB Rambler earns an 8 of 10 for run-ability which is only one point lower than its bigger brother, the BOB Revolution Flex.
The Rambler has a locking swivel front wheel with adjustable tracking that is easy to use and keeps the stroller running straight on any surface. While this option lacks an adjustable handlebar, the height is good for most users to maintain good running ergonomics. The adjustable suspension can help create comfort for the passenger and less fatigue for the pusher. This option has limited rolling resistance and is a pleasure to push at speed. While it isn't as smooth as the BOB Revolution Flex or the Thule Urban Glide 2, casual and serious runners will enjoy the price and its run-ability.
Ease of Use
The Rambler, much like other joggers, lacks some features which results in a lower ease of use score of 6 of 10.
The features it does have are easy enough to use, it won't cause frustration.
Fold and Unfold
The Rambler has a traditional BOB fold that requires two hands and some practice. While not difficult it has multiple steps. It does not self-stand or have a carry handle, and the locking mechanism is a manual connection that gets you up close and personal with your stroller. Unfolding has fewer steps, but it requires some strength to shake it open.
The parking brake is a large center pedal that is easy to set and release as it rocks forward and back. it is friendly for sandal feet.
The bin is large and holds our large diaper bag. It has a weight allowance of 10 lbs and rear and side access. There are no other storage features.
The Rambler's sunshade is large and has a small but useful vinyl peek-a-boo window nicely placed for easy viewing. The window cover is Velcro and it can be folded away in the open position. This canopy covers to the knee and can be rotated forward.
The 5-point harness on the Rambler is straightforward with easy to tighten and adjust straps. This stroller has an adjustable crotch strap and shoulder height adjustment for a good fit.
The seat is a sling style option with stationary leg rest and a narrow footrest. The back reclines almost flat for cozy napping and the thermo-molded seats help increase breathability and support little bodies.
Car Seat Compatibility
The BOB Rambler is compatible with several infant car seats with the purchase of an adapter. All of the adapters require strap-in attachment which isn't our favorite but can be functional and secure. You can purchase adapters for several Britax and BOB infant car seats including the Britax B-Safe 35; Graco SnugRide Click Connect and SnugRide Classic Connect seats; Peg Perego car seats including the Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35; and Chicco car seats including the Chicco KeyFit 30 and Chicco Fit2.
Ease of Setup
The Rambler is easy to set up with an assembly time of 5:30 minutes. While it requires the use of an Allen wrench the instructions are easy to follow. The manual could be more direct and concise but it is easy to understand.
This BOB is easy to push and turn on all surfaces earning it an impressive 8 of 10 for maneuverability.
The swivel front wheel and rubber tires make it easy to move in small spaces despite the bulkier size. It can be moved with one hand and makes the transition from one surface to another without any trouble. The rear wheels are somewhat smaller than other BOBs but it still manages well.
Weight and Folded Size
The BOB Rambler is smaller and lighter than the BOB Revolution Flex earning a 7 of 10 for weight and folded size.
This stroller is 2 lbs less with a weight of 25.1 lbs and the smallest in the review with a folded size of 13,150 cubic inches when folded. These measurements make it a good choice if your vehicle is smaller or you are worried about how you will lift your jogger.
The BOB Rambler is similar in quality to other BOB products earning a 9 of 10.
This product has thick durable canvas and molded portions for increased airflow and comfort. The parts align well and we don't see any manufacturing defects or lack of attention to detail. The frame is sturdy with no flex and the wheels spin with little resistance. The brakes work well and the pedal is solid and smooth.
This stroller has a padded sling style seat with a giant canopy and adjustable suspension. The plastic wheels have rubber air-filled tires and the handlebar is foam covered and not adjustable. We think passengers will be comfortable in the Rambler and most pushers will find it useable as well, but taller users might wish for a taller handlebar.
BOB makes a variety of optional accessories from fitness add ons to car seat adapters.
- BOB Parent Console — This console is canvas and Velcros to the handlebar of the stroller. It has two cup holders and a center pocket. It is easy to attach and quick to remove. The cup holders are deep enough for tall water bottles and the center pocket will hold most smartphones.
- BOB Single Weather Shield — This weather shield is a useful cover to protect little ones from the elements. It is a potential must-have option if you plan to run no matter what the weather, or if the weather where you live can be unpredictable.
- BOB Single Fitness Kit — If you want to get a good work beyond the jogging option, this kit is the one for you. Made specifically for BOB strollers, it has resistance bands of various strengths for a total body workout on the go.
- BOB 2016 Single Infant Car Seat Adapter for Chicco — This adapter works with the Chicco Keyfit 30 and Chicco Fit2.
- BOB 2016 Single Infant Car Seat Adapter for Peg Perego — This adapter will work with several Peg Perego infant seats including the Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35.
- BOB 2016 Single Infant Car Seat Adapter for Britax & BOB — This adapter is the one for you if you own a Britax or BOB infant car seat.
Before purchasing any adapter, double check your manual and with BOB to ensure compatibility.
BOB makes a variety of jogging stroller options including:
- BOB Ironman — The now discontinued running powerhouse has a fixed front wheel, spoked wheels, handbrake, and other standard BOB features. This stroller has been replaced by the BOB Blaze a new fixed wheel runner with similar weight, size, and features to the Ironman. We plan to review the Blaze in an upcoming jogging review update.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD and Carrie Vickers