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Hands-on Gear Review
Thule Urban Glide Review
Price: $400.00 List | $399.95 at Amazon
Pros: Top scores for run-ability and maneuverability, easy to use, high quality
Cons: Won't self-stand when folded
Bottom line: Our favorite jogging stroller that is great for running as well as everyday use
The Thule Urban Glide is our favorite jogging stroller, earning the top overall score by 9 points, is the winner of our Editors' Choice award, and a product we recommend without hesitation. It delivered top performance in run-ability and maneuverability, earning a 9 of 10 in both categories. If that isn't enough to sway you, it offers great quality, strong ease-of-use, and sells for a competitive price. The Urban Glide faces strong competition from the impressive BOB Revolution Flex, also an Editors' Choice winner, and both products are outstanding joggers. However, the Urban Glide scored higher than the BOB overall, and in maneuverability and ease of use, Plus, it has a $100 lower list price.
RELATED REVIEW: The Race for the Best Jogging Stroller of 2017
Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
Thule (pronounced Too-La) was founded by Erik Thulin in Sweden when he started creating products for local fishermen in 1942. In subsequent years this humble company began making products for outdoor enthusiasts and families that make adventure life easier and transportation of toys simpler. From roof racks to luggage boxes, Thule has been expanding their quality products for the past 70+ years, including the fairly recent edition of jogging strollers and bike trailers for kids.
Wobble Issue with 2015 and Prior Fork
We received a report from a reader who experienced the front fork started wobbling/vibrating on the 2015 Urban Glide after 10 months of use. We contacted Thule about this issue and received this reply from Thule's Product Development team:
"The original bushings for the [2015 and prior] swiveling front fork could wear, which results in loose/wobbly front forks. A design improvement for the bushings was implemented for 2016 models that greatly increases the long-term performance of the swiveling fork. This improvement is compatible as a service part for all model years of Urban Glide. If a customer is experiencing poor performance of the front fork, it can be repaired using the new service part.
We would definitely consider this a warranty situation and would provide, free of charge, a new front fork. Please have customer call us directly at 800 238 2388."
The chart below provides a comparison of the overall scores for every jogging stroller in this review. The Urban Glide (shown in blue) not only earned the highest score, but came in over 7 points higher than the closest competitor making it a shoe in for Editors' Choice winner.
The overall score is made up of the individual metric test results with a weighting toward run-ability and ease of use. The sections below provide details on how the Urban Glide performed during testing.
The Urban Glide earned a 9 of 10 for run-ability, the highest score for the metric tying with the BOB Revolution Flex. Historically, the fixed wheel strollers were considered the best for serious runners, but the newer generation of locking swivel wheels scored higher in our testing for run-ability, indicating a shift to a more versatile jogger for everyday use.
The Urban Glide has a locking swivel front wheel that runs straight with adjustable tracking that keeps you on course. This stroller tips back and turns easily with little rolling resistance, and with rubber tires and rear suspension it is easy to push, and our professional runner remarks it is "very runnable". We experienced a little play in the front wheel, but the stroller doesn't wander and the play resulted in less need for back tipping to turn.
The Urban Glide has an adjustable foam covered handlebar that improves body biomechanics for better running. The shape of the bar is perfect for body positioning, allowing hands to fall in a neutral position, and our running biomechanics instructor feels it is the best handlebar she has ever used, remarking that it is "biomechanically sound" for proper running. It has a range of 16 inches making it a good fit for almost any user. The safety wrist strap can be moved from one side to the other, unlike the strap found on the Burley Solstice that is right side only.
Ease of Use
With a second place score of 8 of 10 for ease of use, the Urban Glide is one of the easier to use strollers we tested.
Though it lacks the same intuitive design found on the Burley Solstice that has easy to identify color-coded adjustment points and an ease of use score of 9, the Urban Glide still offers features that are simple to use and function well.
Fold and Unfold
Folding the Urban Glide isn't quite as easy as the smooth Burley Solstice, but it has fewer steps than the BOB Revolution Flex. This stroller has a one-handed fold that is slightly easier with two. The folding mechanism is under the leg rest and slides and twists to fold the stroller half. You can use the fold handle to roll the stroller or lift it after engaging the manual lock, but unfortunately, it does not self-stand.
The brakes on the Urban Glide are single action and easy to set and release with an extra-large wire pedal in the middle of the rear axle. It is easy to flip up the pedal with the top of your foot and the wire is sandal foot friendly.
The storage bin on the Urban Glide is large and comes with a weatherproof zippered cover to keep items clean and safe from falling out. The Mountain buggy Terrain also has a zippered cover, but it is mesh as opposed to solid, so while it will keep items contained, it does not keep them clean and dry. The Urban Glide bin is easy to access from the rear and sides, and we were able to fit our large diaper bag inside with ease. It has a maximum weight capacity of 10 lbs, which is 5 lbs less than the Burley Solstice bin that is also larger. The Urban Glide has a mesh pocket on the back of the seat that is large enough for convenience items like a cell phone, and mesh pockets inside the seat for sippy cups and snacks. The passenger pockets are similar in design to those found on the Burley Solstice and all of the BOB strollers.
The Urban Glide has one of the nicest canopies in the review, featuring a large vinyl peek-a-boo window with hook and loop closure (the 2016 version has a magnetic closure) and a mesh visor for added protection that maintains passenger visibility. The shade is slightly smaller than the BOB Revolution Flex's, but it can rotate forward for protection from low sun and the wind, unlike the stationary canopy on the BOB. The canopy snaps into place and stays tight with a sleek look.
The 5-point harness on the Urban Glide is easy to put on and adjust with straps that tighten the shoulder and waist simultaneously with one pull on each side. It also features adjustable shoulder and crotch straps, something not found on all of the competition, which makes the harness easier to fit most children. We had some difficulty removing the harness because it requires two hands to unbuckle.
The seat on this stroller is a sling style and has a nicely padded non-adjustable leg rest that transitions to an easy to clean foot rest. The seat back has a one-handed adjustment that is easy to operate, and the back lays flat enough for cozy napping. The reclined seat has a vented area at the top for additional airflow that can be covered if the weather is cold.
Car Seat Compatibility
The Urban Glide is compatible with several infant car seat carriers that allow you to walk baby in the stroller while they are too young to jog with (8-12 months, discuss with your pediatrician). The Thule Car Seat Adapter is a universal adapter that works with a variety of popular brands including the award winning Chicco Keyfit 30 and UPPAbaby Mesa infant car seats. A complete list of seat compatibility can be found on the Thule website as a downloadable pdf.
Ease of Setup
The Urban Glide is the easiest option in the group to assemble, with a build time of under 5 minutes. This stroller has a great manual, requires no tools, and most of the time is spent unpacking the parts that come well-packed to avoid damage while shipping.
The Urban Glide earned the high score for maneuverability with a 9 of 10, tying with the BOB Revolution Flex. Arguably one of the most important metrics for any kind of stroller is being able to easily push and turn over various terrains, which can make or break your overall feelings about your purchase.
The front swivel wheel on this stroller helps it navigate tight spaces while pushing and turning on hard flat surfaces is a breeze. The Urban Glide is very responsive and our professional runner feels this stroller is lightweight and easy to turn. Off-road the Urban Glide excels and we liked how it handled over the rougher terrain, making it a good choice for managing a variety of unexpected outdoor surfaces.
The Urban Glide sports rear wheel suspension, pneumatic tires, and padded sling style seat for a more comfortable riding experience. The rear shocks make this stroller a little jumpy when going down curbs, but the longer handlebar keeps you standing straighter for better control.
Weight and Folded Size
If you aren't already in love with the Urban Glide, the lower weight of 22.6 lbs will likely seal the deal.
It is the second lightest option out of the top 5 products in this review, and it has the 4th smallest fold overall, at about 14,500 cubic inches. This makes it easier to lift and stow than much of the competition, unlike the BOB Revolution Flex and Burley Solstice that are both heavier and larger. The Urban Glide can fold even smaller if you use the quick release hubs to remove the wheels, so if your trunk is small it has a better chance of fitting than the majority of joggers we tested.
The Urban Glide earned a 9 of 10 in our tests for quality, with only the Thule Glide scoring higher with a 10. The components and materials combined to create one of the sleekest and sharp looking joggers in the review.
This stroller has nice fabric that feels good and appears breathable. It didn't snag in our tests and is nicely fitted to the frame in a groove that hides seams and fittings. The frame has a sleek design that is pleasing to the eye and is lightweight with very little flex. The Urban Glide has molded plastic wheels with air-filled rubber tires that do not wiggle or vibrate where connected.
The video below shows some of the features and functionality of the Urban Glide.
Thule offers several nice accessories you can purchase to use with the Urban Glide.
Thule makes two different strollers for jogging (as well as a double stroller) and a variety of bike trailers that are compatible with a jogging kit (sold separately). We reviewed two Thule products in addition to the Urban Glide including the:
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & Carrie Vickers
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