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Hands-on Gear Review

BOB Revolution Flex Review

Editors' Choice Award
Price:   $500.00 List | $382.49 at Amazon - 24% off
Pros:  Easy to run with, responsive turning, high quality
Cons:  Won't self-stand when folded, difficult to lift and carry
Bottom line:  Rugged jogger that is easy to run with and good for every day outings
Editors' Rating:     
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Manufacturer:   BOB

The Skinny

The BOB Revolution Flex earned a second place rank and Editors' Choice award in our jogging stroller review. With a top score for run-ability and solid scores in maneuverability and quality, the BOB impresses by being a great running stroller that adeptly navigates crowded spaces and rough terrain. While the BOB has lower ease of use and weight and folded size scores than the Thule Urban Glide, it shares the Urban Glide's smooth run-ability and offers a more rugged look. This makes it a great choice for those that value the proven durability of a BOB over smaller size and lighter weight. We would recommend this stroller for families who love being outside and plan to move off the beaten path regularly.

While widely considered one of the best jogging strollers, the Flex is also a capable everyday option, as demonstrated in our full-size stroller review where it earned its second Editors' Choice award.


RELATED REVIEW: The Race for the Best Jogging Stroller of 2017

select up to 5 products
Score Product Price Our Take
84
$400
Editors' Choice Award
Our favorite jogging stroller that is great for running as well as everyday use
77
$500
Editors' Choice Award
Rugged jogger that is easy to run with and good for every day outings
75
$375
Great fixed wheel option that performed well overall, but is harder to turn
74
$400
Top Pick Award
Great jogger that is super easy to use and could work as your only stroller
69
$1,130
Top Pick Award
Really cool adventure wagon that is good for jogging and so much more
67
$420
Nice fixed wheel stroller with limited maneuverability in tight spaces
64
$390
High quality, but the fixed wheel makes it harder to turn in tight spaces
63
$600
Do not recommend for avid runners
63
$150
Best Value Award
Best bang for the buck, but not the best option for serious runners
60
$299
Disappointing choice that doesn't run straight enough and lacks the ability to fix that
59
$430
Disappointing to run with and harder to use, make it an option we aren't fond of
51
$380
Requires excessive wrestling to run straight, making it a no go for us
49
$240
Poor run-ability and wobbly wheel make it a bad choice for serious runners
48
$190
Difficult to push and turn with the worst run-ability
47
$160
While better than similar Tourismo, the lack of run-ability makes it a bad jogger
47
$240
One of the hardest to run with and more difficult to push and turn with fixed wheel

Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
Juliet Spurrier, MD
Mom-in-Chief
BabyGearLab

Last Updated:
Friday
May 5, 2017

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In 1994, Roger Malinowski and Philip Novotny formed the Beast of Burden Company, (now known as BOB) in San Luis Obispo, California. The bicycle industry professional and the airline mechanic started BOB with Yak bike trailers with quick release attachment. As the two had families, they saw a need for a new kind of stroller, and the BOB Sport Utility jogging stroller was born. In 2005, the men continued to revolutionize the stroller world creating the first locking swivel wheel on a jogger, making it more versatile and user-friendly. In 2011, the company was acquired by Britax and offers a full line of stroller options designed for every lifestyle.



The new recline adjustment button on the 2016 Revolution is such a huge improvement over the previous version that it helped increase its overall ease of use score.
The locking swivel front wheel on the Revolution is part of the equation that helps it perform so well in our tests for maneuverability.  Left to swivel the Revolution can make tight turns and quick responses to traffic and course changes. Locked in place it can traverse uneven terrain without going astray.
The 2016 BOB Revolution brake pedal is plastic and large enough to be easy to set  release and pain-free for sandal feet.
 

Performance Comparison


This chart compares the overall scores for the jogging strollers we tested. The BOB Revolution Flex (shown in blue) earned the second highest score, making it easy to see why it won an Editors' Choice award.


The sections below provide details on how the Revolution performed during testing for each metric. The metric performance was used to determine the overall score, with an emphasis on run-ability and ease of use.

The BOB Revolution Flex is very easy to run with adjustable suspension  tracking  handlebar  and locking front swivel wheel. These features also helped it earn a high score for maneuverability.
The BOB Revolution Flex is very easy to run with adjustable suspension, tracking, handlebar, and locking front swivel wheel. These features also helped it earn a high score for maneuverability.

Run-Ability


The Revolution scored a 9 of 10 for run-ability, earning the highest score for the metric and tying with the Thule Urban Glide. This stroller sports a locking swivel front wheel, a design that seems to be supplanting the fixed wheel options for serious runners in our tests.


The Revolution's locking swivel front wheel and adjustable tracking are both easy to use. The tracking keeps the BOB running straight, and in our experience doesn't need adjustment very often.

The adjustable tracking on the Revolution Flex is easy to operate and holds the stroller straight and true for a long time.
The adjustable tracking on the Revolution Flex is easy to operate and holds the stroller straight and true for a long time.

Despite being on the heavier side, the Revolution is easy to tip back and turn while running, with one of the lowest rolling resistances in the group. The Revolution moves smoothly with rubber air filled tires and adjustable suspension, and our professional runner feels it is a good option for frequent transitioning from one surface to another.

The Revolution's adjustable handlebar provides a variety of options for parents of different heights. Unfortunately  the pivot design means that taller parents will be closer to the rear axle and more likely to kick it while strolling.
The Revolution's adjustable handlebar provides a variety of options for parents of different heights. Unfortunately, the pivot design means that taller parents will be closer to the rear axle and more likely to kick it while strolling.

The Flex offers an adjustable handlebar with an 11-inch range that helps parents maintain proper biomechanics when running. The handlebar is foam covered and has a wrist strap near the middle that works well with both hands. The handlebar shape is not as ergonomic as the bar on the Thule Urban Glide, but it is still nicer than those that don't adjust.

The 2016 Revolution Flex is easier to use than the previous version of this BOB stroller with a larger storage bin and easier to use recline adjustment feature.
The 2016 Revolution Flex is easier to use than the previous version of this BOB stroller with a larger storage bin and easier to use recline adjustment feature.

Ease of Use


The Revolution earned a 6 of 10 for ease of use.


This score makes it about average for the group, but disappointing compared to the Burley Solstice that earned a 9 with a simpler fold and yellow colored adjustment features.

The first step of folding the BOB Revolution is squeezing dual levers on either side of the frame to unlock the stroller.
The second fold step for the BOB Revolution is pulling the red fold handle located under the seat bottom. The entire fold process is easy  but will require two hands.
 

Fold and Unfold


The fold on the Revolution is somewhat convoluted and not as easy to accomplish as the Burley Solstice. It has a two-handed fold that requires squeezing the levers on both sides of the frame (above left) to initiate and pulling the handle under the seat to fold (above right). The Revolution does not auto-lock or self-stand (where the Burley Solstice does), and the manual locking mechanism is sort of hard to use and requires pulling straps together to connect.

While the storage bin on the 2016 Revolution is large and fit our large diaper bag  we suspect most parents won't be able to tell that it is 15% larger than the previous version (according to BOB).
While the storage bin on the 2016 Revolution is large and fit our large diaper bag, we suspect most parents won't be able to tell that it is 15% larger than the previous version (according to BOB).

Storage


The Revolution has a large storage bin positioned relatively far back under the stroller that can be hard to reach. It has access from the back and sides, and we were able to fit our large diaper bag in both ways, but it is easier to use from the side. The bin has a maximum weight capacity of 10 lbs, which is average for the group, but not as much as the Burley Solstice that holds 15 lbs. This bin is marginally larger than the one found on the previous version of the Flex, but we couldn't tell. The Flex also has a mesh pocket on the back of the seat with an elastic top and inside mesh passenger seat pockets for snacks and treasures.

The Revolution sunshade is one of the largest in the group and has a very easy to use peek-a-boo window. The shade can look a little frumpy when open  but the superior coverage makes this design flaw completely forgivable.
The Revolution sunshade is one of the largest in the group and has a very easy to use peek-a-boo window. The shade can look a little frumpy when open, but the superior coverage makes this design flaw completely forgivable.

Sun Shade


The canopy on the Revolution is extra-large and covers children to their knees when fully open. It is adjustable with a large vinyl peek-a-boo window with a cover that has a hook and loop closure system and a stow pocket for keeping it out of the way when open. The shade is made with water resistant canvas and has reflective materials on the corners to increase visibility when running at night.

The Revolution harness is easy to tighten by pulling on the red side rings and the shoulder straps slide up and down for quick height adjustments.
The Revolution harness is easy to tighten by pulling on the red side rings and the shoulder straps slide up and down for quick height adjustments.

Harness


The Flex has a 5-point lightly padded harness that is easy to put on, take off, and adjust. It offers shoulder height adjustment, an adjustable crotch strap, and waist straps with red pull rings that make them easy to tighten. The buckle snaps together easily and opens readily when the button is depressed without the need for excessive pressure or two hands.

The sling style seat on the Revolution Flex is comfortable and adequately padded with an almost flat recline and more upright posture for better viewing.
The sling style seat on the Revolution Flex is comfortable and adequately padded with an almost flat recline and more upright posture for better viewing.

Seat


The Revolution has a sling style seat with a non-adjustable leg rest that extends down to a plastic foot rest. The seat bottom is lightly padded but has a seam that runs across the bottom behind the knee bend that could cause chafing to exposed skin. The seat back reclines to a nap happy almost flat, and the 2016 version has a more upright position for easier viewing. Reclining the seat on the 2016 is easier than the previous version with a one hand button to recline as opposed to two hands. Once the seat is reclined, a ventilation gap opens at the top for increased airflow.

Car Seat Compatibility


The Revolution is compatible with several different infant car seats. All of the adapters are a two-step process that includes click-in and straps for proper installation.
  • Other Adapters — BOB also offers an adapter for a variety of Britax and BOB infant seats, and an adapter for some Graco seats.

Ease of Setup





The Revolution Flex is relatively easy to assemble, taking 5:21 minutes to put together. It requires a Phillips head screwdriver, and the manual is longer and more detailed than most, but this version is easier than the previous version.

The Revolution Flex rolls smoothly from place to place with tight turns and an impressive ability for quick navigation from a larger jogger.
The Revolution Flex rolls smoothly from place to place with tight turns and an impressive ability for quick navigation from a larger jogger.

Maneuverability


This BOB scored an 8 of 10 for maneuverability, which is one point lower than the Thule Urban Glide, but one point higher than the Burley Solstice. We believe it is important for a stroller to be easy to push and turn, or you likely won't want to use it.


The Flex is easy to push on flat surfaces, but it is 2 inches wider than some of the competition, so you need to go a little slower in tight turns and smaller spaces. Moving on rougher terrain is just as easy as flat, with a relatively smooth transition from one surface to another. This makes it a good option for all-terrain pushing and outdoor adventures.

The BOB Revolution has an adjustable suspension that is easy to use and improves the quality and comfort of the riding experience for passengers.
The BOB Revolution has an adjustable suspension that is easy to use and improves the quality and comfort of the riding experience for passengers.

This stroller offers a relatively comfortable ride with a sling style seat, thermo-molded padding, pneumatic rubber tires, adjustable suspension, and padded shoulder straps.

Even though the 2016 Revolution is about 500 cubic inches smaller than the previous version when folded  it can still be difficult to fit it in smaller cars. Parents can remove the wheels to make it smaller  but they should probably still double check their trunk space before committing to this stroller. Luckily  Amazon has a very easy return policy.
Even though the 2016 Revolution is about 500 cubic inches smaller than the previous version when folded, it can still be difficult to fit it in smaller cars. Parents can remove the wheels to make it smaller, but they should probably still double check their trunk space before committing to this stroller. Luckily, Amazon has a very easy return policy.

Weight and Folded Size


The Revolution weighs 27.3 lbs, which is almost identical to the Burley Solstice. This is 2 lbs heavier than the previous Flex. The Thule Urban Glide is significantly less with a weight close to 22 lbs, which makes it a light jogger and the lightest in the top 5.


The Flex is 14,497 cubic inches which is over 2,000 cubic inches smaller when folded than the previous version. It can be made smaller with the removal of the quick release wheels. The awkward fold and heavier weight make the Revolution a harder stroller to lift and carry, but the smaller size means it might fit in smaller spaces where the larger Burley Solstice can't go.

While utilitarian in looks  it is hard to find any flaws with the materials or construction of the Revolution.
While utilitarian in looks, it is hard to find any flaws with the materials or construction of the Revolution.

Quality


The Revolution received a score of 9 of 10 for quality, tying with the Thule Urban Glide and coming in slightly higher than the Burley Solstice.


The Revolution's fabric is thick, durable canvas with a thermo-molded seat and some reflective edges for night time visibility. The fabric doesn't snag, is water resistant, and easy to care for. The aluminum frame has no flex and is utilitarian is designed with tight connections and hinge points. The fabric fits the frame by wrapping around and doesn't look quite as finished or sleek as the Thule Urban Glide that attaches via a groove in the frame. The overall look is somewhat unkempt, and a little rumpled, but the materials used are top notch.

Manufacturer Video




Accessories


BOB offers several accessories for all the BOB strollers that either make it easier to use or increase versatility.
  • The BOB parent console has two cup holders and a zippered pocket for smaller items.
    BOB Parent Console — Some might argue that a great console is a must have for easy strolling. The BOB console is well designed and provides deep cup holders and a zippered pocket for smaller items. It has a tighter more secure fit to the handlebar than some consoles, which could mean it is less likely to shift or result in falling items.
  • The BOB Snack Tray is removable for easy seat access and has a cup holder and shallow snack compartment.
    BOB Single Snack Tray — While potentially not useable during true running, a snack tray is a great way to improve the passenger experience and keep little ones satisfied during longer outings. This snack tray includes a cup holder and shallow snack compartment.
  • The BOB weather shield is a great way to keep baby cozy no matter what the weather brings.
    BOB Single Weather Shield — Depending on how you plan to use your jogger, a weather shield can vastly increase the opportunities you have to get out and get running by protecting baby from the weather while you run.
  • Stroller Strides Fit 4 MOM for BOB is a nice addition for upping the ante in your workout stroller game.
    Single Fitness Kit — The fitness kit is a collection of resistance bands designed to be used with your BOB so you can increase your workout options while you stroll. This kit attaches to the handlebar and takes the place of the console with a cup holder and pocket for the bands to store in.

Other Versions


BOB makes several different strollers for jogging. We tested multiple BOB options in this review and others including the following:
The BOB Ironman is a fixed wheel stroller with aluminum spoke wheels
  • BOB Ironman — The Ironman has a fixed front wheel and is designed for serious runners that need an ultra-light stroller with no frills for dedicated running. The wheels are spoked aluminum, it has a handbrake on the handlebar and similar features to the other BOB strollers.
The BOB Sport Utility is a fixed wheel stroller
  • BOB Sport Utility — The Sport Utility is the ruggedized BOB designed for off-road fun with fixed front wheel stability. This BOB has molded plastic wheels like the Flex, a handbrake like the Ironman, and other standard BOB features like adjustable suspension and giant canopy for passenger comfort.
  • BOB Revolution Flex Duallie — This two-seater version of the Revolution Flex brings everything you love about the Revolution to a two seater variety.
Juliet Spurrier, MD & Carrie Vickers

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Most recent review: May 5, 2017
Summary of All Ratings

BabyGearLab Editors' Rating:   
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5 star: 100%  (1)
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