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Hands-on Gear Review
Mountain Buggy Terrain Review
Price: $600.00 List
Pros: Hand brake, lots of storage, good for napping
Cons: Tracks poorly when running, heavy
Bottom line: Do not recommend for avid runners
The Mountain Buggy Terrain earned an 8 of 16 rank in this review making it a fairly average competitor with a higher than average price. This stroller earned a third place score for quality, maneuverability, and ease of use. It is a nice looking stroller made with quality parts and it is easy enough to push and turn that most parents will be happy using it on everyday adventures. However, it only scored a 5 of 10 for run-ability, which stings when you want a good jogging stroller. The adjustable tracking on the Terrain is difficult to use and doesn't stay true when the stroller hits ground after being tipped back to turn, this makes it a poor choice for dedicated runners. The Thule Urban Glide and the Burley Solstice cost less and have higher or equal scores in every metric, making either a better choice depending on what you are looking for.
RELATED REVIEW: The Race for the Best Jogging Stroller of 2017
Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
In 1992, the Mountain Buggy brand was born to fill one dad's need to take baby off-road, which required an all-terrain stroller he couldn't find. To enjoy the New Zealand countryside, and fulfill an empty niche in the market, he created the Mountain Buggy all-terrain platform. Mountain Buggy continues to alter and improve their style and designs to create strollers good for newborns to toddlers and on mountain trails or urban strolls.
This chart compares the overall scores and rank for each of the jogging strollers we tested for this review. The Mountain Buggy Terrain is shown in blue.
More information is provided in the sections below on how the Buggy performed during testing. The individual metric scores were then used to determine the overall scores for each product.
The Mountain Buggy earned a 5 of 10 for run-ability. This is below average and disappointing for a stroller designed for running. The Thule Urban Glide and the BOB Revolution Flex both earned 9 for run-ability.
The Terrain has adjustable tracking, but the adjustment isn't very effective and seemed to need realignment every time the front wheel hit the ground after being tipped up for rounding corners. Tracking is unlike any other we've seen with a side of the wheel adjustment that took time to figure out. Adjustment happens by loosen the wheel nut connection to make the necessary tracking adjustments and then retightening the nut. If the adjustment isn't right, you have to start the process over. After adjusting the tracking, we had trouble getting the Terrain to track straight when running and no amount of continued adjustment seemed to help. The play in the locked front wheel limits what the tracking can accomplish, and running with this stroller is still a chore as it continued to veer slightly no matter what we tried. The Terrain has a hand brake that works well, but the center placement close to the bar gets in the way of one-handed pushing and impacts running ergonomics.
Ease of Use
The Terrain earned a 7 of 10 for ease of use. This is higher than all the BOB products, but lower than the Thule Urban Glide that earned an 8, and the Burley Solstice with a score of 9.
Fold and Unfold
The Terrain has an easy one-handed fold with only two steps. The fold completes with you and the stroller in a standing position, and the carry strap makes it easier to lift. This stroller auto-locks and self-stands, making it easier to manage and store. Unfolding is a two-handed process that is easy and simple.
The Mountain Buggy has single action parking brakes and a rear deceleration hand brake. The deceleration brake is effective and easy to use. The parking brakes are easy to set and release, and are sandal foot friendly.
The Terrain's under seat storage is large and holds an impressive 22 lbs. This bin held our Extra-large diaper bag and can be accessed from the back and sides. It has a mesh zippered cover to keep items contained, though it isn't weather proof like the cover found on the Thule Urban Glide. The Terrain also has two mesh stow pockets for the passenger, and two water bottle sleeves for parents that are pretty cool and unique to Mountain Buggy.
The Terrain canopy is nice looking, but is only average in size. This canopy sits high on the stroller and has a flip out visor, but it leaves smaller babies relatively exposed. The peek-a-boo window has a magnetic cover and is too far forward on the canopy to see baby without leaning over. The shade has small zippered pockets on the sides, with one designed for an MP3 player with a hole for threading ear buds.
The Terrain has a 5-point harness that is difficult to put on, take off, and to adjust. It has separate pieces to snap into the buckle one at a time, and when you press the button to unbuckle the harness you have to pull them all out one at a time. The automatic pop out straps on the Burley Solstice make the Terrain feel even more difficult.
The Terrain offers the easiest two-handed recline in the group, though one-handed versions are still nicer and easier to manage. The seat back lays almost flat for cozy napping. This stroller has an adjustable leg rest by way of a metal bar that slides out to prop the leg rest up. It works well for smaller babies, as larger kids may end up bending the bar. The footrest is made of aluminum and hard plastic and is likely to be cold in the winter and potentially hot in the summer.
Car Seat Compatibility
The Terrain can be compatible with a variety of infant car seats with the purchase of an infant seat adapter specific to each individual brand and model. The adapters work with some models of the following brands: Mountain Buggy, Phil and Teds, Chicco (not the Keyfit 30), Graco Click Connect, Graco Classic Connect, Maxi-Cosi, and Cybex.
Ease of Setup
The Terrain is relatively easy to set up taking us just under 9 minutes to unpack and assemble. The manual is good and it does not require any tools.
The Terrain earned a 7 of 10 for maneuverability, which is the average for the group and tied with the Burley Solstice. The high for this metric is 9 earned by the Thule Urban Glide.
The Terrain struggled to keep up with the strollers in its price range. This stroller has a lot of flex in the frame and the softer suspension make it less responsive when trying to navigate tight turns or crowded locations. It requires a little more work to push over grass and gravel than some of the competition, and off-road trail navigation is only okay as the front wheel had difficulty moving over larger rocks. The Terrain is not the best at negotiating curbs with flex in the handlebar and soft suspension causing some control issues.
The Terrain handlebar is adjustable with the largest range in the group. It is comfortable to hold thanks to a smooth foam cover, and has a nice shape for running. The seat is adequately padded and the rear wheels have soft suspension. We think passengers and pushers will be relatively comfortable using the Terrain, even over longer distances.
Weight and Folded Size
The Terrain earned a 6 of 10 for weight and folded size. This stroller weighs 27.8 pounds, which is heavier side than about half the competition. It measures about 17,000 cubic inches when folded, with the smallest strollers measuring under 14,000. While on the smaller side and possibly easier to fit in some cars, it is heavy and could be difficult to lift and carry.
The Terrain earned an 8 of 10 for quality, tying with the Burley Solstice. This stroller has soft canvas material that is heavy and feels durable. The storage bin is made of durable materials and feels like it will withstand a heavy load without sagging. It has a clean design with nice attention to detail like rolling the edge of the fabric where it attaches on the frame. However, it has a lot of flex at the handlebar and the fold joint. The wheels on the Terrain are heavy duty plastic with pneumatic tires, with too much play and flex, which likely impacted its run-ability score.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & Carrie Vickers
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