The Maclaren Mark II scored higher than the more expensive Maclaren Techno XT. This minimal stroller earned a top score for weight and folded size with the lowest weight in the group of 8.6 lbs. Unfortunately, it failed to impress in any of our other tests with low scores for ease of use and quality, and next to the lowest score for maneuverability. The Mark is difficult to push and turn with almost no recline and a difficult harness and fold; it can't match the other products in its price range that offer more features and better functionality. The Zoe XL1 Best v2 earned more points overall, has the same list price, and a better score for ease of use. By comparison, the Mark II a stroller we have trouble recommending.
Maclaren Mark II Review
Pros: Easy to carry, light weight
Cons: Poor maneuverability, long harness straps, hard to use buckle
Compare to Similar Products
Our Analysis and Test Results
The chart below shows how the Maclaren Mark II (shown in blue) ranked when compared to the competition.
The details related to performance during testing are provided in the sections below divided by metrics.
Weight and Folded Size
The Mark II earned an 8 of 10 for weight and folded size, with a weight of 8.6 lbs. While it is the lightest option, it is not the smallest, measuring 5,536.44 cubic inches when folded. Alternatively, the similar Inglesina Net, weighs 11.9 lbs and measures 4,762.80 cubic inches. Depending on your needs, smaller might be more important than the 3 lb difference. This stroller has a nice shoulder carry strap.
Ease of Use
The Mark earned a 4 of 10 for ease of use, while the Zoe XL1 Best v2 earned the high of 8 and offered a deeper recline, better storage, and the easiest fold, with the same price.
Fold and Unfold
The Mark II has Maclaren's one-handed collapsable umbrella fold. The fold is initiated using feet and locks closed automatically, but it does not self-stand.
The Mark has double action brakes that require two pedals to set. These brakes are easy to set, release, and use wearing sandals.
The bin on the Mark II holds up to 4.4 lbs maximum and fit our small diaper bag. Accessing the bin is a bit of a joke with a weird shape that has a high back with side access obscured with bars. There is no additional storage on this stroller.
The Mark II canopy is medium in size and has UPF 50+. It features a kick out visor (above left) and a square peek-a-boo window that is cross-hatched vinyl (above right). The window has no cover and is hard to see through, but at least it doesn't leave baby exposed to direct sunlight.
The Mark II harness is difficult to operate. This harness has easy rethreaded height adjustment, but changing the length of the straps is difficult because you need to feed the strap through each piece twice. The buckle is a nesting buckle that requires partial assembly before inserting the straps.
The seat on the Mark is similar to the Inglesina Net and just as disappointing. The seat back is made of mesh and reclines about 2-3 inches by unzipping the sides. Baby is unlikely to even notice the new angle and it certainly isn't napping worthy. The Mark II doesn't offer a leg rest and the small footrest is unreachable by smaller children
Ease of Setup
The Mark II is easy to assemble taking us about 3:00 minutes. It doesn't require any tools, and there are no canopy instructions, but it isn't difficult to figure out.
The Mark II earned a 3 of 10 for maneuverability, making it one of the more difficult strollers to push. Alternatively, the Zoe XL1 Best v2 earned a 5 and is easier to navigate. This stroller has small plastic wheels with the dual wheel design. Pushing the Mark is uncomfortable with solid plastic handles. Navigation is difficult and the stroller flexes when you try to make tight turns leaving it feeling unresponsive and sloppy. Moving to uneven surfaces makes the job even harder with the wheels getting stuck and refusing to move in the direction you choose, as they are pulled off course by any small bump or groove. It is not a good option for terrains you might encounter at a play park.
The Mark has lackluster all-wheel suspension and no padding on the seat. It is unlikely that this stroller is comfortable, as the mesh seat has no padding, no leg rest, and does not recline enough for napping.
The Mark II earned a 4 of 10 for quality, compared to the Inglesina Net score of 6. The overall look and feel of the Mark II are disappointing with exposed rivets and connection points. This stroller has plastic wheels and flimsy feeling fabric with no seat padding or useable storage. The handles are uncovered plastic with rough edges that rub on skin and while it gets the job done, for the price it feels like it should do it with nicer fabric or a more streamlined frame.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & BabyGearLab Team