In-depth reviews guided by a Pediatrician

Britax B-Lively Combo Review

Budget-friendly and straightforward but only works with Britax brand
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Price:   $240 List | $204 at Amazon
Pros:  Works with canopy, compact, price
Cons:  Only works with Britax seats, heavier
Manufacturer:   Britax
By Juliet Spurrier, MD and Wendy Schmitz  ⋅  Oct 14, 2019
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68
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 26
  • Ease Of Attaching Car Seat - 35% 8
  • Weight/Folded Size - 30% 7
  • Maneuverability - 10% 6
  • Safety - 10% 3
  • Ease Of Use - 5% 6
  • Quality - 5% 6
  • Ease Of Set Up - 5% 8

The Skinny

The Britax B-Lively is the replacement option for the popular Britax B-Agile ad it shares almost everything in common with its predecessor. This stroller is somewhat heavier than the B-Agile but folds smaller and comes with similar useful features including front access storage bin and a giant canopy. The B-Lively currently is only compatible with Britax infant car seats which hurt its overall chances for an award, but if you don't mind being locked into Britax brand seats, it might be a good choice for a combination product as well as a full-size stroller. The B-Lively performed well in our review for lightweight strollers and full-size options.


Compare to Similar Products

 
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Price $240.00 List
$203.99 at Amazon - 15% off
$500.00 List
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$100.00 List
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Pros Works with canopy, compact, priceSuper easy car to strolling transition, easy to push and turnParent tray, compact fold, budget-friendlyEasy car seat attachment, lightweight, compact foldEasy car seat attachment, compact with easy fold, easy to maneuver
Cons Only works with Britax seats, heavierLimited lifespan of 6-9 monthsLimited to Chicco car seats, short lifespanDual action brakes, harder to push and turnSmaller storage, small front wheel
Bottom Line Budget-friendly and straightforward but only works with Britax brandBest for city dwellers looking for a safe, quick transition from taxi to on-the-go adventuresEasy to use dedicated to car seat attachment onlyBest frame stroller with easy car seat attachment and parent consoleCompact Britax that works well with car seats and is easy to push and turn
Rating Categories Britax B-Lively... Doona Combo Chicco Shuttle Chicco KeyFit Caddy Britax B-Free Combo
Ease Of Attaching Car Seat (35%)
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8
10
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10
10
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9
10
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9
10
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8
Weight Folded Size (30%)
10
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7
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9
10
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9
10
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9
10
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7
Maneuverability (10%)
10
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6
10
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7
10
0
5
10
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4
10
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7
Safety (10%)
10
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3
10
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8
10
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6
10
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6
10
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6
Ease Of Use (5%)
10
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6
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6
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5
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6
Quality (5%)
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7
Ease Of Set Up (5%)
10
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8
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7
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8
Specs Britax B-Lively... Doona Combo Chicco Shuttle Chicco KeyFit Caddy Britax B-Free Combo
Weight 19.6 lbs 16.8 lbs 15 lbs 11.7 lbs 22.6 lbs
Folded Dimensions 24"W x 9.5"H x 29"L 18"W x 16"H x 28.3"L 20.1"W x 11.3"H x 28"L 19.8"W x 11.5"H x 33.5"L 24"W x 10.3"H x 27"L
Capacity Limits Minimum: Birth
Maximum: 55 lbs/44"
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: 35 lbs/32"
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: Infants that are within the size and weight limitations of the infant car seat.
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: Max allowable weight/height for the car seat.
Minimum: Birth
Maximum: 65 lbs/45"
Included Car Seat Compatibility Britax All Britax Seats Doona Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Britax All Britax Seats
Click-in Car Seat Adapters Britax All Britax Seats Doona Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Britax All Britax Seats
Strap-in Car Seat Adapters None None None None None
One-handed Fold Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Locking Fold Auto Auto None Auto Auto
Self-standing Fold Yes n/a Yes Yes Yes
Handlebar Height - Min/Max 40" 32.5"/39" 42" 36"/42" 32"/44.5"
Sandal-friendly Brake Yes Yes Yes Yes
Storage Basket Size Large n/a Large Large Medium
Included Accessories None Infant Car Seat and Stroller In One None None None
Setup Time 5:04 n/a 7:45 8:28 6:45

Our Analysis and Test Results

Britax is a European company that came to the US in 1996. The company has been making products for babies for over seventy years, including their popular best-selling car seats. Britax also owns the BOB company and together they make a variety of stroller types and infant car seats.

Performance Comparison



The B-Lively works well with the B-Safe car seat as it sits snuggly inside the toddler seat.
The B-Lively works well with the B-Safe car seat as it sits snuggly inside the toddler seat.

Ease of Attaching Car Seat


Attaching car seats to the B-Lively is one of the easiest in the review. The upside is the stroller comes with adapters for the Britax seats, but the downside isn't compatible with any other car seat.

The car seat adapters for the B-Lively click into attachment points on the sides of the frame and the small straps snap on for safety.
The adapters on the B-Lively require the user to align the carrier sides over the adapters before simultaneously pressing down on both sides.

The adapters click easily in place on the sides of the frame, and the toddler seat and canopy remain in place. The car seat carrier needs to be aligned with both sides simultaneously before you press it into place. Attachment takes little pressure over the weight of the baby, and it almost feels like it installs itself. You can use the canopy of the B-Lively in conjunction with the car seat. The carrier is easy to attach and very easy to release, but it isn't as secure feeling as you would suspect a brand-specific combination to be.

The fold on the B-Lively is smaller than that of the B-Agile and the Baby Jogger City Mini.
The fold on the B-Lively is smaller than that of the B-Agile and the Baby Jogger City Mini.

Weight and Folded Size


The B-Lively gained about 2 lbs over the B-Agile with a weight of 19.6 lbs. It measures 6,612 cubic inches when folded making it one of the smallest in the group including some of the frame strollers. With several options weighing less, it isn't the best if you are looking for a lightweight stroller for car seat transport. However, its smaller size makes it suitable for small spaces or cars.

The B-Lively has foam filled plastic wheels and a dual wheel design that historically isn't that good at moving over off-road surfaces.
You can lock the front wheels on the B-Lively in place by pressing a button. This functionality can make it easier to negotiate uneven surfaces.

Maneuverability


With plastic wheels and the dual wheel on a single leg design, The Lively's ability to traverse uneven terrain could improve with a single wheel and rubber tires. The shorter wheelbase and tighter design make it easy to navigate narrow spaces or tight turns. While it manages hard, flat surfaces relatively well, you won't want to take it off-road for long as it struggles with bumps and rocks.

The seat back on the B-Lively has two small pockets and a larger zippered pocket.
The seat back on the B-Lively has two small pockets and a larger zippered pocket.

Ease of Use


The B-Lively may be somewhat difficult to use, but it still manages to be easier than most of the competition.

The B-Lively folds with the pull of a strap located on the seat bottom.
The B-Lively has an automatic locking device that works well and keeps the stroller closed for easier transporting.

Fold and Unfold


The B-Lively is easy to fold, can be managed with one hand, and has few steps. With a quick-release pull handle (above left) and auto-lock (above right), it is quick and straightforward to fold. Unfolding is also simple and easy.

The single action brakes on the B-Lively is a press to set and release pedal near the wheel.
The single action brakes on the B-Lively is a press to set and release pedal near the wheel.

Brakes


The B-Lively has single action brakes that are some of the easiest in the review to use both for setting and releasing. The brake is press only and good for bare or sandaled feet.

The larger storage bin on the B-Lively holds up to 10 lbs and has unique front access.
The larger storage bin on the B-Lively holds up to 10 lbs and has unique front access.

Storage


The large storage bin has front and rear access with enough space for our large diaper bag. It has a maximum weight allowance of 10 bs which isn't impressive but is average. The B-Lively also has two small pockets and a medium zippered pocket on the back of the canopy. While convenient, the smaller pockets aren't as useful as the one with a zipper.

The canopy on the B-Lively can work in conjunction with the car seat offering additional protection from the elements or lookie-loos.
The canopy on the B-Lively can work in conjunction with the car seat offering additional protection from the elements or lookie-loos.

Sunshade


The B-Lively canopy stays attached when you use it with the car seat and works well to cocoon little ones in the car seat carrier. The peek-a-boo window can help you keep an eye on your baby.

Ease of Setup


The B-Lively is easy to set up, taking just over 5 minutes to unbox and assemble. Set up includes attaching wheels and installing the canopy.

It doesn't require any tools, and the manual would be better with a quick start guide.

The B-Lively is a middle of the road stroller when it comes to quality  but it used to be considered a more high-end brand so we are disappointed with the decrease in attention to detail.
The B-Lively is a middle of the road stroller when it comes to quality, but it used to be considered a more high-end brand so we are disappointed with the decrease in attention to detail.

Quality


While the B-Lively is nice enough, it struggles to meet the competition. This stroller has canvas fabric and a narrow plastic footrest with foam-filled, plastic wheels. The frame is angular with more parts than other Britax options, but it still looks nice and has minimal flex. Britax has replaced the magnet cover on the canopy with nothing and Velcro for the front storage access instead of a zipper. While not the end of the world, it shows less attention to detail than previous Britax offerings. This stroller has a stationary handlebar, padded sling-style seat and stiff suspension creating a relatively comfortable ride for passenger and parent.

Manufacturer's Video




Juliet Spurrier, MD and Wendy Schmitz