In-depth reviews guided by a Pediatrician

Thule Chariot Cross 2 with Jogging Kit Review

Really cool adventure wagon that is good for jogging and so much more
Top Pick Award
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Price:   $1,180 List | $1,180 at Amazon
Pros:  Easy to use, good run-ability, nice to push and turn
Cons:  Width makes narrow places hard to navigate, heavy
Manufacturer:   Thule
By Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz  ⋅  Apr 23, 2019
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69
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 16
  • Run-ability - 30% 7
  • Ease Of Use - 20% 8
  • Maneuverability - 15% 7
  • Quality - 10% 9
  • Safety - 10% 7
  • Weight/Folded Size - 10% 2
  • Ease Of Set Up - 5% 6

The Skinny

The Thule Chariot Cross 2 is a unique jogging option that can also be used for strolling, biking, and even skiing. This little power wagon is a great choice for a runner that also plans on other outdoor fun with their baby. While it scored well for maneuverability and run-ability, you do sacrifice somewhat because of the larger size and weight required to use the Cross as a bike trailer or for skiing. This versatile option is very easy to use and comes with features that will impress parents and leave passengers smiling. The Cross 2 comes with the strolling and bike trailer components, the jog and ski kits are sold separately. We would certainly recommend this product to parents that love being outdoors and plan to do a lot more than running. If running is your only goal, then a more traditional option like the Thule Urban Glide 2 may be a better fit with a higher overall score, better run-ability, and a lower price tag.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award  
Price $1,180.00 List
$1,179.90 at Amazon
$500.00 List
$479.95 at Amazon - 4% off
$500.00 List
Check Price at Amazon
$360.00 List
$359.99 at Amazon
$450.00 List
$479.95 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Easy to use, good run-ability, nice to push and turnTop scores for run-ability and maneuverability, easy to use, high qualityEasy to run with, responsive turning, high qualityEasy to move, great runner, quality materialsHigh quality, lightweight, easy to fold and use
Cons Width makes narrow places hard to navigate, heavyHarder to transport and stow as it doesn't self-standWon't self-stand when folded, difficult to lift and carryHeavier, bulkyHarder to turn in small spaces
Bottom Line Really cool adventure wagon that is good for jogging and so much moreOur favorite jogger that makes a great everyday strollerRugged jogger that is easy to run with and good for every day outingsA great jogger for a good price that works for every day useGreat fixed wheel option that performed well overall, but is harder to turn
Rating Categories Chariot Cross 2... Thule Urban Glide 2 BOB Revolution Flex BOB Rambler Thule Glide 2
Run Ability (30%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
Ease Of Use (20%)
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
7
Maneuverability (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
7
Quality (10%)
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
10
Safety (10%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
7
Weight Folded Size (10%)
10
0
2
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
Ease Of Set Up (5%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
Specs Chariot Cross 2... Thule Urban Glide 2 BOB Revolution Flex BOB Rambler Thule Glide 2
Weight 32.875 lbs 24.4 lbs 27.3 lbs 25.06 lbs 24.4 lbs
Rolling Resistance 158.7 Feet 144.3 Feet 150.5 Feet 139.7 Feet 141 Feet
Folded Dimensions 31.3"W x 21"H x 51.5"L 27.2"W x 15.5"H x 36.5"L 25.2"W x 15.3"H x 37.6"L 25.3"W x 13.5"H x 38.5"L 27.2"W x 20.5"H x 36.5"L
Capacity Limits Minimum: Walk Only:
1-10 mo. with the Infant Sling
or
6 mo.
Jogging & Off-Road: 6 mo.
Maximum: 49 lbs/44"
Minimum:
Walk Only:
Infant Car Seat: Birth
Stroller Seat: 6 mo.
Jogging & Off-Road: 6 mo.
Maximum: 75 lb Total Capacity Limit
Minimum:
Walk Only:
Infant Car Seat: 0 - 8 wk.
Stroller Seat: 8 wk. - 8 mo.
Jogging & Off-Road: 8 mo. - 5 yr.
Maximum: 75 lbs/44"
Minimum:
Walk Only:
Infant Car Seat: 0 - 8 wk.
Stroller Seat: 8 wk. - 8 mo.
Jogging & Off-Road: 8 mo. - 5 yr.
Maximum: 75 lbs/44"
Minimum:
Walk Only:
Infant Car Seat: Birth
Stroller Seat: 6 mo.
Jogging & Off-Road: 6 mo.
Maximum: 75 lb Total Capacity Limit
Included Car Seat Compatibility None None None None
Click-in Car Seat Adapters None BeSafe
Izi GO Mod, Izi GO X1
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30
Cybex
Aton, Aton 2, Aton 4, Aton 5
Maxi Cosi
CabrioFix, Citi, Mico 30, Mico Max 30, Mico NXT, Pebble, Pebble Plus
Nuna
Pipa
None None BeSafe
Izi GO Mod, Izi GO X1
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30
Cybex
Aton, Aton 2, Aton 4, Aton 5
Maxi Cosi
CabrioFix, Citi, Mico 30, Mico Max 30, Mico NXT, Pebble, Pebble Plus
Nuna
Pipa
Strap-in Car Seat Adapters None BOB
Unity
Britax
Affinity Unity, B-Safe, B-Safe 35, B-Safe 35 Elite, Chaperone, Unity, Unity ISOFIX Compatible
Britax-Romer
Baby-Safe, Baby-Safe Plus II
Chicco
KeyFit Plus
Combi
Shuttle 33
Evenflo
Discovery 5
Graco
SafeSeat, SnugRide, SnugRide Click Connect, SnugRide Click Connect 30, SnugRide Click Connect 35, SnugRide Click Connect LX 35, SnugRide Click Connect 40
Peg Perego
Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30, Primo Viaggio 4-35
Safety 1st
Comfy Carry Elite, onBoard, onBoard Air
Safe-n-Sound
Unity, Unity Neos
UPPAbaby
Mesa
Britax
B-Safe, B-Safe 35, B-Safe 35 Elite, Chaperone
BOB
B-Safe, B-Safe 35
Graco
SnugRide Click Connect 30, 30LX, 35, 35 LX, 40, SnugRide Classic Connect 22, 30, 32, 35
Peg Perego
Primo Viaggio 4-35, Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30, Primo Viaggio SIP
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30
Britax
B-Safe, B-Safe 35, B-Safe 35 Elite, Chaperone
BOB
B-Safe, B-Safe 35
Graco
SnugRide Click Connect 30, 30LX, 35, 35 LX, 40, SnugRide Classic Connect 22, 30, 32, 35
Peg Perego
Primo Viaggio 4-35, Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30, Primo Viaggio SIP
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30
BOB
Unity
Britax
Affinity Unity, B-Safe, B-Safe 35, B-Safe 35 Elite, Chaperone, Unity, Unity ISOFIX Compatible
Britax-Romer
Baby-Safe, Baby-Safe Plus II
Chicco
KeyFit Plus
Combi
Shuttle 33
Evenflo
Discovery 5
Graco
SafeSeat, SnugRide, SnugRide Click Connect, SnugRide Click Connect 30, SnugRide Click Connect 35, SnugRide Click Connect LX 35, SnugRide Click Connect 40
Peg Perego
Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30, Primo Viaggio 4-35
Safety 1st
Comfy Carry Elite, onBoard, onBoard Air
Safe-n-Sound
Unity, Unity Neos
UPPAbaby
Mesa
One-handed Fold No Yes No No Yes
Locking Fold Auto Auto Manual Manual Auto
Self-standing Fold Yes No No No No
Handlebar Height - Min/Max 35.5"/44.5" 30"/46" 34.5"/48" 38.8" 37"/44.7"
Fixed/Swivel Wheel Fixed Swivel Swivel Swivel Fixed
Sandal-friendly Brake Yes No Yes Yes No
Included Accessories Bicycle Trailer Kit, Rain Cover, Sun Shade, Flag None None None None
Setup Time 15:56 min:sec 5:13 min:sec 5:21 min:sec 5:30 5:24 min:sec

Our Analysis and Test Results

With the addition of the jogging kit  the Thule Chariot Cross 2 can become a good jogging stroller.
With the addition of the jogging kit, the Thule Chariot Cross 2 can become a good jogging stroller.

Thule was founded over 70 years ago by Erik Thulin. Started in Sweden in 1942, the company originally made gear for fisherman. Skip ahead twenty years, the first ski rack for cars is introduced followed by a rack with a basket. Many years later, Thule is now recognized internationally as a go-to supplier for active people looking for gear designed for transporting bicycles, winter and water toys, and other cargo. Thule now makes some products with kids in mind. Their strollers and bike trailers are a perfect fit for adventurous parents with children.



We tested this stroller using the Thule Jogging Kit 2. The kit comes with the fixed front wheel assembly including frame and tire. The standard strolling kit stores onboard the Cross 2 which means you can carry one while you use the other for on the road change-ups. The list price above reflects the cost of the basic stroller and jog kit for a one-to-one comparison.

The Thule Chariot Cross 2 is good for a variety of activities from strolling and jogging to bike trailer and skiing. This little wagon does it all.
The Thule Chariot Cross 2 is good for a variety of activities from strolling and jogging to bike trailer and skiing. This little wagon does it all.
The Thule Chariot Cross 2 is good for a variety of activities from strolling and jogging to bike trailer and skiing. This little wagon does it all.

Performance Comparison


Below is a chart of the jogging strollers overall scores in this review including the Thule Chariot Cross 2 (in blue).


The sections below include information on performance details of the Cross 2 as it compares to the competition in this review.

The Cross 2 earned the second highest score for run-ability in this review  being hurt somewhat by its wider width and heavier weight.
The Cross 2 earned the second highest score for run-ability in this review, being hurt somewhat by its wider width and heavier weight.

Run-Ability


The Cross 2 earned a 7 of 10 for run-ability which is better than much of the competition but not as impressive as the Thule Urban Glide 2 and the BOB Revolution Flex with scores of 9.


The Cross tied with the Thule Glide 2 for running ability. This stroller has a fixed front wheel is easy to use with adjustable tracking that works with the turn of a dial. The adjustable handlebar and suspension increase run-ability by improving the runner's biomechanics which should lead to less fatigue and overall effort related to pushing while running.

The tracking adjustment knob on the Chariot Cross 2 is easy to access and turn. It keeps the stroller moving true  and we did not have to adjust it very often.
The tracking adjustment knob on the Chariot Cross 2 is easy to access and turn. It keeps the stroller moving true, and we did not have to adjust it very often.

During testing, the Cross was a good mover despite the heavier weight and larger size, and we did not have difficulty tilting it back for turns, a must do action for running due to a fixed front wheel. This stroller tracks straight and has the best rolling resistance in the group. While not as nice to run with as lighter, narrower options, it is still a good choice for the serious runner that also plans to partake in other outdoor adventures.

The Chariot Cross 2 is easier to use than the Cougar 2 it replaced with better storage  simplified sunshade  and the addition of an adjustable handlebar.
The Chariot Cross 2 is easier to use than the Cougar 2 it replaced with better storage, simplified sunshade, and the addition of an adjustable handlebar.

Ease of Use


The Cross 2 earned an 8 of 10 for ease of use which is an improvement over ease of use for the Thule Chariot Cougar 2 that the Cross 2 replaced.


Ease of use impacts your daily experience with a stroller and captures how ordinary regular features function.

Once folded the Cross 2 locks in place automatically  so it won't fall open until you want it too.
The folding mechanism of the Cross 2 includes color-coded adjustment points for simple step-by-step folding.

Fold and Unfold


The Cross has a relatively easy two-handed fold process with a lock that closes automatically (above left). The stroller self-stands when folded and can be more compact by removing wheels. The process can is anywhere between 3-12 steps. The Cross 2 has color-coded transition buttons (above right) that guide parents through the complete fold process, including the removal of the quick release wheels. The self-stand feature is potentially only good for storage, but it is a benefit that helps manage a larger product. Unfolding the Cross is also easy enough, but it is convoluted with more steps than most of the competition.

The Cross 2 brake is easy to access  and the pedal is sandal foot friendly.
With a quick glance at the opposite wheel hub  parents can tell if the brake is set or released with a color indicator.

Brakes


The Cross 2 has single action brakes that are readily accessible (above left). They are easy to set and release with a sandal foot friendly pedal that is color-coded, so you know when they are properly set (above right).

The storage basket on the Cross 2 has an interior pocket for easier organization of supplies.
When not in use  the storage basket on the Cross 2 can fold up and clip to the frame to keep it out of the way.

Storage


The storage bin on Cross folds out from the back beneath the handlebar (above left). The bin is large and held our extra-large diaper bag with a nice interior pocket to help keep things organized and smaller items within reach. The narrower rectangle shape of the bin means we had to work to get it in, but it fits with room to spare. The bin has a max allowance of 8.8 lbs, which is low for a product for two because two children will likely have more supplies. We suspect that supplies for two will weigh more than 8 lbs, and we think it's likely that parents will fill the basket to greater than its capacity and worry this will create a potential tipping hazard. When not in use, parents can clip the bin up and out of the way (above right).

The stow pockets on the back of the seats are easy to access when the seatbacks are in the upright position. However  access becomes hindered when the backs are in full recline. Parents may want to consider the parent console or hydration cage accessories for holding additional items.
The stow pockets on the back of the seats are easy to access when the seatbacks are in the upright position. However, access becomes hindered when the backs are in full recline. Parents may want to consider the parent console or hydration cage accessories for holding additional items.

The Cross 2 also has passenger stow pockets inside the cabin. These pockets can hold most things, but smaller riders won't be able to reach them while buckled in. There is also an elastic pocket on the back of each seat for storing things like wallets, keys, phone, or water bottles.

The seats on the Chariot Cross 2 recline and have a vinyl peek-a-boo window for spying on your baby.
The seats on the Chariot Cross 2 recline and have a vinyl peek-a-boo window for spying on your baby.

Sunshade


The Cross sports a unique sunshade. The shade is a clip-on piece of fabric that blocks the sun and can slide up or down for direct coverage. When the seats recline, there is a tinted, vinyl peek-a-boo window. You can protect the front of the Cross with a zippered mesh cover and a vinyl cover depending on your needs. Both covers can be rolled up and stored out of the way.

The harness on the Cross 2 is easy to use and the new improved buckle no longer requires nesting.
The harness on the Cross 2 is easy to use and the new improved buckle no longer requires nesting.

Harness


The Cross 2 has two seats, and both have easily adjustable 5-point harnesses. They are also relatively easy to buckle and unbuckle. The straps use a non-rethread style adjustment with an 8-inch range of height options.

The Cross 2 seats two passengers in 5-point harness on seats that recline but do not have leg or foot rests.
The Cross 2 seats two passengers in 5-point harness on seats that recline but do not have leg or foot rests.

Seat


The Cross 2 seats can recline, and each one moves independently for individual comfort. The seat has three recline positions operated with one-hand. None of the options are truly flat, but the angle should be sufficient for most nappers. The seat doesn't offer leg or footrests, which means children sit with legs stretched in front of them.

Car Seat Compatibility


The Cross 2 does not work with any infant car seat and the Thule accessories for infants should NOT be used with the jogging kit and babies should not be taken jogging or off the beaten path until they are at least 8-12 months old or you get the thumbs up from their pediatrician.

Ease of Setup





The Cross took almost 16 minutes to assemble including the jogging kit. It is only average for ease of setup with an international style manual we find challenging. The manual is harder to follow and requires flipping back and forth to follow the steps. There are more parts to assemble on the Cross than similar trailers we've reviewed. Assembly requires a single tool that comes in the box.

The fixed front wheel on the Cross 2 hurt its overall score for maneuverability  but it still managed a respectable 7 of 10 for the metric.
The fixed front wheel on the Cross 2 hurt its overall score for maneuverability, but it still managed a respectable 7 of 10 for the metric.

Maneuverability


The Cross earned a 7 of 10 for maneuverability with the jogging kit fixed front wheel attached. This score is lower than those joggers that offer a locking swivel front wheel.


While easy enough to push and traverse various terrain thanks to large rubber air-filled tires, the Cross is difficult to turn as a result of its overall size and the fixed front wheel. The width of this stroller makes it a tough one to use indoors or on narrow trails, but the width is part of why it works so well as a bike trailer and adventure wagon. This design is a trade-off that makes it a poor choice for indoor outings and could limit hiking to wider trails.

The handlebar on the Cross 2 rotates on a pivot point to accommodate the height of various users.
The suspension on the Thule Chariot Cross 2 is adjustable and easy to operate for more control over passenger comfort on uneven or bumpy terrain.

The adjustable handlebar and suspension help make this a more comfortable product for pushers and passengers. The larger range of height options and covered foam make the handlebar comfortable (above left) with an included safety strap. The adjustable suspension (above right) is a rare find that helps increase overall comfort based on passenger weight and the terrain.

Without removing any wheels  the Cross 2 is not very compact when folded which can make it harder to fit in most sedans.
Without removing any wheels, the Cross 2 is not very compact when folded which can make it harder to fit in most sedans.

Weight and Folded Size


The Cross 2 is lighter and smaller in the strolling mode, but the jogging kit attached, the Cross weighs 31.9 lbs. It measures 33,851 cubic inches when folded.


The Cross 2 is the largest stroller in this review which means the Cross might be harder to lift and store and may not fit in some smaller cars.


The back wheels are quick release, and the front jogging kit can be removed to fit the stroller in a tight spot. But this means you will need to somewhat dismantle the stroller before leaving your adventure. This process is something to consider before purchasing depending on what you drive or how you plan to get the stroller from A to B.

The Cross 2 earned a top score for quality with materials and construction that appear durable and firmly connected.
The Cross 2 earned a top score for quality with materials and construction that appear durable and firmly connected.

Quality


The Thule Cross earned a 9 of 10 for quality, the second highest score in the group tying with the Thule Urban Glide 2 and the BOB Revolution Flex.


The Cross 2 uses materials that work well and feel solid without flex or rattling. Everything on this stroller is relatively seamless and works in conjunction with the other components. The fabric material is a thick ripstop with thermo-molded seats that integrates into the frame with few exposed fasteners. The vinyl windows are tinted, and they are somewhat pliable for durable long-term use. Overall, the Cross has a high-end fit and finish.

Manufacturer Video




Accessories


Thule offers additional conversion kits (sold separately) depending on the activity (it comes standard with the strolling and bike trailer kits). We purchased the Jogging Kit for this review. Which leaves the:
  • Thule Chariot Cross Country Ski Kit
    Thule Chariot Cross Country Ski Kit — The cross country ski kit is a cool addition for including baby in winter sports activities. This kit includes all the necessary components for your cross-country skiing adventures.

Comfort accessories include:
  • Thule Chariot Padding 2
    Thule Chariot Padding 2 — The Chariot padding provides comfort and protection to the stroller seats to make clean up easier. This easy to use addition catches dirt, crumbs, and spills and can prolong the life of your cabin interior while providing little ones a nicer place for napping on longer trips.

Conveniences accessories include:
  • Thule Parent Console 2
    Thule Console 2 — The Console 2 provides what many parents feel is a necessity to any stroller. This console has two cup holders and a covered pocket. This console clips on quickly and gives parents quick access storage for small items like keys and mobile phones.
  • Thule Hydration Cage
    Thule Hydration Cage — Looking for a handy place to keep your water bottle? Staying hydrated is cool and easy with the Thule hydration cage. This holder is a good addition for parents who aren't interested in the full console but still want to sip some H2O while running.

Other Versions


Thule offers several trailer options similar to the Chariot Cross 2. However, most of these options lack suspension which makes them a non-starter for us. We think traversing over rougher terrain or moving at speed should come with suspension for safety and comfort. In addition to the Cross 2 with suspension, the Chariot Lite 2 also has suspension and is featured in our review of the The Best Bike Trailers for Kids.

Thule Chariot Lite 2
The Thule Chariot Lite 2
This is another two-seater stroller that is similar in style to the Cross 2 but has a significantly lower price tag. The Lite 2 has a soft pouch with less storage space, but it could be enough for older children or shorter trips. The Chariot Lite seats do not recline and will be difficult to nap in. This design may be no big deal for older children, but it could be hard with younger ones. We think older kids and parents will be happy with the Lite 2, but we think parents of younger ones should invest more for the Cross 2.

Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz