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Hands-on Gear Review
Baby Jogger City GO Review
Price: $230.00 List | $199.00 at Amazon - 13% off
Pros: Easy to install without the base, easy to use
Cons: Crash test HIC results, quality/comfort
Bottom line: An easy to use seat that is generally average
The Baby Jogger City Go scored below average in our tests with only six products earning lower scores. The City Go earned a good score for ease of installation using the carrier without the base and it also performed well in our tests for ease of use. We like that this seat offers a color-coded European belt path for a quick install and we think the features make it easy for parents to use on the go. However, overall, it disappointed in many tests by being by and large average and offering little to choose it over its less expensive counterparts, like the Chicco Keyfit 30. This seat is on the heavier side making it a poor option for urabn dwellers, and the lower installation scores give us pause that it could potentially be installed incorrectly. While there isn't anything to hate about this seat, we think parents can find better options elsewhere with more impressive crash test results and easier forms of installation across the board.
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Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
Baby Jogger originated in 1984 by fathers who wanted to jog with their toddlers. To solve their jogging dilemma, these savvy parents invented the first real jogging stroller. From that point on, Baby Jogger created multiple types of strollers, the majority of which you cannot jog with despite the company name, and several car seats. In 2015, Baby Jogger was acquired by Newell Rubbermaid, and they continue to create popular strollers and car seats.
The chart below shows the comparison of overall scores for the products we tested in this review. The Baby Jogger City Go (in blue) did not rank above average.
The subsections below include the performance details from our testing process on how the Baby Jogger performed compared to the competition.
In our evaluation of the crash test results, the Baby Jogger Go earned an average score indicating a possible slight margin of protection over much of the competition with results for G-force chest clip being higher than the majority of seats and the HIC score being lower than most.
The following charts show the Baby Jogger City Go test results (in black) compared to the car seats that have the best crash test scores for both the head and chest sensors (in green). The Graco SnugRide Click Connect 40 earned the highest test results for the chest sensor, and the GO was only slightly lower in chest forces, and well under the Federal safety standard.
For the head sensor (HIC), the Go performed below the average with one of the highest (most forces) test results and only one product scored lower, the Orbit Baby G3.
Baby Jogger advertises the City Go as side impacted tested, something many parents might be keen to learn. However, the details of this testing are related to harness retention in an accident; it does not indicate that the seat is safer than any other product in the event of a side impact collision. Currently, there are no set standards or even agreed upon definitions for side impact protection claims. We believe claiming side impact protection that only demonstrates harness retention of the child is not what most parents think side impact tested means, which in our minds is a type of "safety-washing" and an attempt to sway parents with misleading information. To Baby Jogger's credit, they have at least defined what their testing means in a transparent way instead of making you search for details concerning their side impact statements.
Ease of Install - LATCH
The City Go earned a 6 of 10 for ease of install using LATCH anchors. This score is average for the group.
Because studies indicate that injuries in a car crash are often related to car seats that are not installed properly, we think ease of installation is important. An easier to install seat could potentially increase the chances that installation of the car seat is correct. The Chicco Fit 2 is the easiest option in our tests to install using the LATCH.
The City Go has push button LATCH anchors that are easy to install. The seat base has six adjustable positions and two bubble level indicators to help parents achieve a level installation. Ease of tightening and loosening the straps hurt the Go's installation score.
Ease of Install - Belt
The City Go earned a 7 of 10 for installation using the vehicle belt. This score is better than its score for LATCH installation but not as good as its score without the base. Only two seats scored higher in this metric including the Peg Pergo Primo Viaggio 4-35.
The City Go has a color-coded belt path for easier installation and an easy to use belt lock off.
Both features help make the installation using the vehicle belt path easier. In our experience, belt lock-offs make installation with this method far easier and significantly more stable.
Ease of Install - Without the Base
The City Go earned an 8 of 10 for ease of installation without the base. This score is its highest installation score and may be a direct result of European belt path that allows for a quick, stable and easy installation for parents on the go.
The American belt path is also simple, but doesn't wrap around the back of the seat and feels less secure once installed.
The Go has a color coded belt path that helps parents recognize the belt installation quickly even if they are somewhat unfamiliar with the installation.
Ease of Use
The Go earned a 7 of 10 for ease of use. This score is one point lower than the high score for the products we tested.
Ease of use impact daily life with a car seat and your ability to use the regular functions without complication or frustration.
The Go has a similar buckle to those found on the Chicco and UPPAbaby seats. The buckle is easy enough to press, as is the chest clip, but the clip is harder to work with larger fingers. Tightening the harness is accomplished with a strap at the foot of the seat, it is a little tough to pull, but not the most difficult one in the group. The shoulder height adjustment is a non-rethread style that works with the push of a button on the back of the moving headrest. This adjustment is smooth and works well with one hand. The shoulder straps have 17 possible height positions, and the crotch strap has 2.
The handle is adjusted by pressing in on dual buttons on either side simultaneously and pivoting the handle up. The handle rubs on the canopy when the canopy is down, and the handle is down, but they do not interfere when they are both up which is more important. The handle has four positions.
Carrier and Base Connection
Installing the carrier onto the base is easy and smooth. The carrier rests easily on the top of the base and gravity pretty much does the rest without much need for additional pressure.
LATCH Anchors and Manual Storage
The LATCH anchors store by clicking on either side under the base, which is not very elegant, but it keeps them out of the way. The Go manual slides into two clips on the bottom of the base for safe keeping. While this keeps it out of the spill and spit-up danger zone, it also means you need to remove the base to access it and you won't have it should you be traveling sans base and forget how to install it.
The Go earned 4 of 10 for comfort and quality, which is below the average for the group. The Go has decent padding on the seat, but the warning labels are on the headrest, which put the less friendly plastic badges right near baby's head. While warning labels are required, other seats manage to place them in more comfortable locations.
The overall look and feel of this seat are about average. It isn't as nice as the Chicco Fit 2, but it is nicer than the Chicco Keyfit 30. There isn't much to hate or love about this design that is run-of-the-mill and boring. The canopy is larger than most and feels durable, but also looks frumpy and ill-fitted to the seat.
The City Go earned a 5 of 10 for weight. The carrier portion of this seat weighs 10.23 lbs, which is the average for the group.
Carrier weight may be only marginally relevant for parents moving the carrier from car to stroller or inside their house steps away, but it can be critical for parents that need to carry the carrier long distances or spend time in the city where toting a baby may be more common. The Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35 weighs only 9.58 lbs and is one of the lighter high ranking award winners.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz
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