Oct. 28, 2012 at 8:27 PM ET
Buying a new stroller doesn't have to feel as overwhelming as buying a new car. We've put the newest infant strollers to the test -- with each model evaluated by an expert and then road-tested by parents. Here are the best rated baby strollers of 2012 so you can find the one that's right for your family.
Baby Jogger City Mini GT
FASTEST FOLD Expert Rating:Stroller Stats Weight Capacity: newborn up to 65 lbs.Stroller Weight: 20.9 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 44" x 24.5" x 30-43.5" Folded: 31.5" x 9.75" x 24.5"Carrycot/bassinet? Compact Pram, $170Car seat adapter? universal adapter fits Britax, Chicco, Graco, Maxi-Cosi, and Peg Perego, $70Price: $350 Get it Now: Pish Posh Baby
Expert Review: There's a lot to love about the newly updated City Mini GT. The larger, foam-filled tires mean that the stroller works as well on grass as it does on pavement while the adjustable-height handlebar makes it comfortable for both parents. A full-coverage canopy provides ample shade and two peekaboo windows let you keep an eye on your baby. The padded seat has a one-handed, full-recline that includes a vented back panel for airflow along with a retractable weather cover. The narrow seatback compartment and underseat basket provide decent storage, and, while there are no included extras, Baby Jogger offers accessories including a cup holder, rain cover, child tray, belly bar and glider board. Best of all is the effortless maneuvering, pedi-saving handbrake and one-handed, patented compact fold of the City Mini GT.
What We Love: fast, easy assembly; adjustable handlebar; quick, compact fold; full-coverage canopy; Universal Accessory Mounting Bracket that makes adding accessories a breeze; gender-neutral color options; smooth, one-handed maneuvering
What We Wish It Had: easier access to underseat storage; included cup holders
Great For: all-terrain; parents of different heights; parents needing a stroller with a quick, compact fold; warm climates
Bottom Line: A fast, compact, one-handed fold with lots of comforts for baby and parent.
"I love the smooth ride of the stroller and that it's not at all bulky. It has a simple, one-handed fold and easily fits in the trunk of my sedan."
"My daughter is happy in the stroller and can easily fall asleep. The extra long canopy ensures that she's protected from the sun, too."
"I wish the stroller came with cup holders for parent and child and the belly bar."
"I really liked the hand brake on the City Mini GT -- very easy to engage and disengage."
-- Eileen and her 3-month-old from Tampa, FL
BEST STORAGE!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn (when used with infant SnugSeat accessory) up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: 22 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 22.25" x 29.5" x 39.5" Folded: 22.25" x 11" x 37"Carrycot/bassinet? Not currently available.Car seat adapter? Adapters for Peg Perego, Maxi-Cosi Graco and Chicco, $30-$40Price: $460Get it Now: Giggle.com
Expert Review: UPPAbaby's newest release, the CRUZ, comes with a full-size seat, canopy and underseat basket with a fast, compact, one-step fold. The reversible seat comes in four color options and includes an easy, one-handed recline, ample seat padding and is infant-suitable with UPPA's SnugSeat accessory to add extra head support. The canopy has a large, mesh peekaboo window, is adjustable for taller tots and provides good coverage with its SPF 50+ extension. Our favorite feature is the large underseat basket that has easy accessibility and two storage pockets for keeping your water bottle or wallet from getting buried. An extension handlebar, independent shocks and puncture-free, foam core rubber wheels keep the ride smooth and comfortable for both parent and child.
What We Love: simple assembly; reversible seat; large underseat basket; big canopy with extension; one-step fold; lots of optional accessories to choose from; included rain shield and bug shield
What We Wish It Had: included cup holder or parent tray; ability to fold with the seat facing either direction
Great For: parents of different heights; sidewalks, stores, grass or gravel; sun protection; lots of underseat storage; all-day adventures
Bottom Line: A full-size canopy, reversible seat and large basket plus smooth maneuvering and a one-step fold.
"The seat recline is very easy to adjust -- with just one click it moves back easily. However, the seat does not fully recline for a newborn."[Note: UPPAbaby's SnugSeat accessory allows the seat to be used with a newborn.]
"The underseat storage is ample and very easy to access. The only downside is the it is fully exposed so in bad weather, the items you store at the bottom would be exposed to the rain or snow."
"I love that the canopy has UV protection to block my child from the sun's harmful rays! I also like that the straps are very easy to adjust as my child grows and the seat was very comfortable for him!"
"The one-click seat removal, brake and quick fold features were all great! I found it to be much easier to handle and collapse than other strollers I've used."
"The stroller maneuvers very well and turns smoothly. It's great for city living where the aisles and doorways are frequently narrow. While I prefer to use two hands on it, you can easily push it with one."
--Linda and her 4-month-old son, from New York, NY
Valco Baby Snap
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 44 lbs.Stroller Weight: 13 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 20.5" x 32.3" x 41"; Folded: 20.5" x 33.5" x 10.5"Carrycot/bassinet? None availableCar seat adapter? None availablePrice: $250Get it Now: Albee Baby
Expert Review: At only 13 pounds and a great price, the new Valco Snap is a full-featured stroller that you can actually carry with you. The Snap is easy to assemble and even easier to fold -- one step and the stroller folds in half, locks shut and has a convenient carry hand so you can lift it, roll it behind you or stand it upright. The stroller has a sporty feel to it, with its windbreaker-style seat fabric that's currently only available in three colors -- black, periwinkle or cornflower. The extra roomy, padded seat on the Snap combined with a one-touch full recline means your child will ride and rest comfortably at any age -- but you'll likely want to invest in Valco's All Sort seat pad with infant headrest ($25) for added cushioning for your newborn. When fully reclined, you can leave the weather shield down revealing two storage pockets or roll it up to allow for airflow through the mesh panel. The large canopy offers great interior headroom, has an extension for additional sun protection and a mesh peekaboo window. The light frame and tubeless tires make for easy maneuvering while the underseat basket is both deep and easy to access.
What We Love: lightweight frame; large seat; fast fold; easy assembly; one-handed recline to flat; canopy coverage
What We Wish It Had: larger color selection; wrist tether; adjustable handlebar
Great For: traveling; tight turns; errands; parents that need to lift the stroller often;
Bottom Line: From everyday errands to travels, the lightweight Valco Snap will keep your kids comfy and you on the move. (If only it had more color combos...)
"The style of the stroller is sleek and lightweight but looks expensive, sturdy and well made."
"The seat has an excellent recline feature which is great for my newborn daughter. It was very simple to recline and seems to have many options for adjusting as she gets older and can sit up."
"I wish the stroller had a safety strap that I could loop through my wrist. Since the stroller is so lightweight, I felt as though it could very easily roll away quickly if my hand slipped. I also really wish the handlebar was adjustable. I found it to be a bit high for my 5'4" frame."
"I really like the secure strap and buckle device. Since you have to push down on it before it will unlock I think it would be very difficult for a child to unbuckle herself which makes it very safe."
"I LOVE the extra long sunshade. It provides amazing protection -- better than I have seen on any other stroller. Plus the periwinkle color is so great! Can't even begin to tell you how many compliments I've gotten!"
"It is beyond easy to maneuver. Very simple to push one-handed and making tight turns wasn't a problem at all."
--Devra and her 7-week-old daughter from Chappaqua, NY
BEST AFFORDABLE LUXURY!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: 26 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 41" x 24" x 35 Folded: 27" x 20" x 24"Carrycot/bassinet? EVO carrycot, $189Car seat adapter? Adapters available for Graco and Maxi-Cosi car seats, $35Price: $399Get it Now: Diapers.com
Expert Review: The full-sized, luxury Mutsy EVO has both a moderate price tag and a compact fold for a stroller of its class. Details like the leatherette-wrapped, adjustable handlebar provide a constant reminder of the stroller’s luxury while features like the reversible seat, large underseat basket and large, airless rubber wheels make the EVO as practical as it is pretty. The seat reclines easily all the way to flat making it suitable for infants. Plus the footrest fabric unzips and can be attached around the bumper bar creating a bassinet-style enclosure. This same footrest material can be unzipped and compressed to reveal a higher footwell for smaller legs. Maneuvering is smooth and easy, and the fold, while multi-step, is very compact and can be done with the seat facing either direction or removed. Bonus: Personalize your carriage by choosing between the black or grey aluminum frame and one of six different fabric colors. One downside -- the canopy coverage is mediocre, even with the zip-out extension.
What We Love: adjustable, leather handlebar; reversible seat; large, accessible underseat basket; affordable luxury; bassinette-style enclosure;
What We Wish It Had: larger canopy coverage; parent cup holder accessory; included rain cover
Great For: city terrain; indoor strolling; transporting in small cars; compact storing; luxury look for moderate a moderate price
Bottom Line: A full-sized, luxury stroller with a compact fold, exceptional seat features and mid-range price tag.
“The seat recline is easily the stroller’s best feature. It is intuitive and effortless to switch the seat from forward-facing to parent-facing, and you can adjust the recline to any position, including flat. A major bonus: When you place the seat parent-facing, fully recline the seat, and attach the footrest around the bumper bar, it has a real bassinet feel to it."
"The underseat storage is very large and easily accessible. It was easy to access the diaper bag without taking the bag out, and it also held two small grocery bags. When I placed a playground ball in it, though, I had to be sure to brace it carefully so it wouldn’t roll out since part of the basket is shallow."
"I was so impressed by the maneuvering of the stroller -- I was able to turn it a full 360° in the same spot. It was so easy to weave in an out of narrow store aisles. Other than the fact that it isn’t a lightweight stroller, it is really nice for city parents. You can definitely push it easily with one hand."
"The fold took a little while to figure out, but with practice, it was pretty straight-forward. Once folded, the stroller is super compact. It folds to a square even with the seat on, which I think is unusual for a luxury stroller this size. This is great if you want to fit it in your trunk or even store it in a closet in your home. While it’s not easy to carry around due to its weight, it is amazing how compact it is when folded."
--Julie and her 10-month-old son from New Haven, CT
Maclaren Techno XLR 2012
REALLY EASY FOLD!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Range: Up to 55 lbs.Stroller Weight: 16.5 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 34" x 16.5" x 43"; Folded: 44" x 17" x 11"Carrycot/bassinet option? XLR Soft Carrycot, $95Car seat adapter? None offered.Price: $395Get it Now: Albee Baby
Expert Review: The Maclaren Techno XLR is a deluxe umbrella stroller, which offers a huge, well-padded seat, excellent suspension and adjustable handles. The 4-position recline can lie completely flat to make it suitable for an infant -- just add the included head hugger and shoulder pads to the harness for additional support. The seat is 16½" wide, so it can easily be used from birth to age 4 or 5. The 6" plastic wheels preform best on city streets or suburban store aisles, though it can handle park grass or compact paths. The Techno XLR also comes with a rain cover, reversible seat pad, footmuff and customized luggage tag. The canopy provides only moderate overhead coverage though it does have a UV-treated peekaboo window and a storage pocket for parents. The only other storage is in the underseat basket which is small and difficult to access, but the XLR doesn't disappoint on its easy and compact fold.
What We Love: compact frame; reversible coordinated seat liner; included footmuff, rain shield and infant padding; 4-position recline
What We Wish It Had: larger, adjustable sun canopy; better access to underseat storage
Great for: tight spaces and narrow store aisles; urban and suburban settings; streets or flat park paths; compact storage
Bottom line: This a great option for parents that like the size and convenience of an umbrella stroller with upgraded features that accomodate an infant.
Parent Rating:"The seat recline is one of the BEST features of the Maclaren Techno XLR and VERY easy to use -- in fact you can do it with one hand! I really liked how the seat fully reclines, allowing your infant to practically lie flat. This was a great feature when transferring my son who tends to fall asleep on outings, right into the stroller without any fuss -- he might have thought he was being transferred to his crib."
"It performed well on both smooth surfaces and rougher one -- even wet leaves."
"The stroller brakes of the Maclaren Techno XLR are great. When they are in lock, you are not moving this stroller."
"There were times I wished the Maclaren Techno XLR was just a bit smaller, but then again that would sacrifice some of my favorite parts of the stroller, most importantly the spacious seating for baby."
-- Kim and her 7-month-old boy from North Babylon, NY
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn to 44 lbs. Stroller Weight: 28 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 30" x 23" x 11.8" Folded: 44" x 25" x 36"Carrycot/bassinet? Snug carrycot, $150Car seat adapter? Adapters to fit Peg Perego, Graco, Maxi-Cosi and Chicco, $40Price: $500Get it Now: Baby Age
Expert Review: The new "go everywhere inline" Navigator is the latest release from New Zealand-based philandteds. This modular stroller can grow as your family grows with a variety of optional accessories such as a second seat, carrycot, Freerider scooter attachment and the new face-to-face seat. The seat itself has a contoured, ventilated back that we wished had a little more padding and comes in a your choice of four colors that you can mix with other seat pads and canopy covers. The large canopy is window-less but provides good coverage with its mesh extension, can rotate all the way forward and has two storage compartments on the side for stashing quick-grab items. The five-point harness is easy to adjust, nicely padded and even includes a unique newborn harness position. The recline is common to previous philandteds models -- a combination of clips and straps that can be loosened or tightened to create different levels of recline. Compared to other strollers, this system is awkward, two-handed and not smooth to adjust while a child is in the seat. Maneuvering is excellent thanks to a trio of 12" pneumatic tires that provide excellent handling on everything from store aisles to dirt paths. To fold the stroller, you must come to the front in order to access the latches, and the process always seemed to bang the handlebars down to the ground. The folded stroller isn't especially compact, doesn't automatically lock closed and at 28 lbs., is heavy to lift making the Navigator less-than-ideal for public transportation, those with lots of stairs, or frequent schlepping into the trunk. (Note: For a number of the stroller's features, we found this YouTube video manual by philandteds invaluable.)
What We Love: adjustable handlebar; large, adjustable canopy; lots of optional accessories; easy maneuvering; tail-free harness system; newborn harness position; modular stroller that can grow as your family grows; colorful mix and match seat liners and canopies
What We Wish It Had: peekaboo window; pedi-friendly brake; smoother and simpler recline; clearer manual; plusher seat padding; more compact fold
Great For: neighborhood walks and errands; parents of different heights; smooth or rough terrain; a modular stroller that can grow as your family grows; parents that don’t need to fold or lift the stroller often
Bottom Line: An all-terrain stroller with fun colors and great maneuvering that can grow with you from one newborn to two toddlers.
"This is an all-terrain, heavy duty, go-anywhere kind of stroller. It has a sleek look with a matte finish. It is narrow, yet spacious. You can use it for a casual walk, a brisk jog or a walk through the unpaved park trail. I love the fun colors it comes in and its sporty look."
"The seat recline on the main seat is done with buckles and straps. It is easy to do, but a little jerky with a child in it. It is nice that is fully reclines all the way for sleeping."
"The sun shade provides great coverage from the sun and bright lights. I also love that the stroller has a removable pad for easy cleaning. The harness straps adjust easily and don’t leave excess straps hanging around to get in the way or chewed on."
"I love the adjustable handle and comfortable grip for pushing. My husband is 6'4" and I am 5'2", so this is crucial for us."
"I wish it had a peekaboo window on the canopy so I can see my little one. I also wish it came with a place for a cup!"
"The stroller is smooth is so easy to maneuver. You can push it one-handed even with two kids in it. It is compact and slides right through doorways. The large three wheels and compact design really allow for supreme maneuverability." (Note: Tester also had optional doubles kit.)
--Danielle and her 12-month-old son, from Wales, WI
MOST ADJUSTABLE STROLLER!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 37.5 lbsStroller Weight: 18.5 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 34" x 21" x 34"; Folded: 35" x 18" x 12"Carrycot/bassinet? Not currently available.Car seat adapter? Adapters for Maxi-Cosi and Graco, $45Price: $649-$659Get it Now: Giggle
Expert Review: The Bugaboo Bee wins hands down for being the most adjustable stroller we've seen. The seat reverses to face out or face you. There is a 3-position recline including nearly flat for infants. The Bee has a unique seat that allows you to adjust both the height of the seat back and the seat depth, each able to change about 4". This allows you not only to tailor the fit to your child, but to allow the stroller to grow as your child grows. The stroller is suitable as is for infants (though parents may want the added padding of the Bee Baby Cocoon) and can also be used with an infant car seat (additional adaptors needed). The handlebar also offers 8 different positions to suit parents of every height. The underseat basket is large and deep, but only accessible from the front of the stroller, and while there is a plastic footrest, some kid may dangle their feet in the basket instead -- potentially problematic if you have fresh peaches from the farmer's market in there. The Bee provides a smooth, quiet ride on sidewalks, streets, store aisles, grass and curbs with its four foam-filled, rubber tires each with independent suspension. The stroller only comes with a rain cover and wrist strap, but Bugaboo offers a wide variety of accessories including cup holders and organizers to footmuffs and travel bags. The Bee's canopy is large and provides good sun protection, but there is no peekaboo window or foldout extension and we found its movements jerky. Folding the Bee is easy, but does require two hands.
What We Love: adjustable seat height and depth; adjustable handlebar; reversible seat; independent wheel suspension; lots of optional accessories; smooth maneuvering
What We Wish It Had: peekaboo window; canopy extension; smoother canopy fold; rear basket access
Great For: streets, stores, grass; parents of different heights; one stroller to grow with your child;
Bottom Line: While the price is high on the Bugaboo Bee, so is the list of features. Endlessly adjustable, the Bee can stroll your child from infancy to toddlerhood in comfort and style.
"The underseat basket is a good size. We stopped at the grocery store and I was easily able to put two grocery bags under there, plus my wallet and some baby items. It's also nice that the basket can be removed. But it's a little hard to access the basket when the seat is fully reclined."
"The best feature BY FAR of the Bugaboo is that the seat can switch from forward- to rear-facing, which is rare for an umbrella stroller. Being a new mom, I feel compelled to be able to see my daughter 24/7, so it's really comforting to me to have her face me the entire time."
"I wish the sun canopy was a bit bigger. I found I had to drape a lightweight blanket over the canopy to fully protect my daughter's face from the sunlight."
"The height adjustable handlebar is a nice feature, especially because my husband is a full foot taller than me. The handlebar telescopes up like a suitcase handle and was high enough that my 6'2" husband never caught his toes against the rear wheels or the underseat basket."
"The Bugaboo Bee is super easy to maneuver. I can easily push it with one hand, while using the other to walk my dog on a leash. I love that it can turn on a dime and is small enough to whizz through narrow aisles."
"I think the Bugaboo is an ideal in-between stroller for parents who don’t want both a big, Rolls Royce-type of stroller AND an umbrella stroller. The Bee offers the best of both worlds in that the seat is reversible, and you can buy an adapter to plug in your car seat. It's much lighter and narrower than the Rolls Royce-type of strollers out there, but it is heftier than some of the wispy umbrella strollers on the market."
-- Courtney and her newborn from Brooklyn, NY
ALSO A JOGGER!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: Newborn up to 45 lbs.Stroller Weight: 20 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 36" x 24.5" x 34.5"; Folded: 32" x 24.5" x 15"Carrycot/bassinet option? Latching Carrycot, $150 - $160Car seat adapter: Universal car seat adapter fits most car seats, including Graco, Peg Perego, Chicco, Combi, Britax and Baby Trend, $20; Maxi Cosi car seat adapter, $40Price: $469 - $489Get it Now: Magic Beans
Expert Review: From neighborhood jogs to errands and outings, city sidewalks to rough park paths, the 2012 Bumbleride Indie is a great choice for handling the daily to-do's of parenting with ease. This lightweight, all-terrain stroller has a full recline and included head and shoulder pads to provide a cozy ride for infants and a generous seat to accommodate your child well into toddlerhood. Available in eight color combinations including the Movement Edition (silky smooth, high performance fabrics) and the Natural Edition (blend of soft, recycled and bamboo fabrics), the Indie comes with an adjustable handlebar, large underseat basket and included cup holder for parents. The expansive canopy provides ample shade in addition to UV-45 protection, a peekaboo window, and a small storage pocket for stashing keys or your cell. The 12" air-filled tires and rear-suspension maneuver the Indie over a variety of terrains and when your child is old enough to hold her head up, lets the Indie work as well as a jogger as it does for around town. Folding is a super-simple -- just pull each of the triggers, pull up the strap behind the seat and the stroller will collapse. Plus there is a manual lock and carry strap to make this 20 lbs, do-it-all stroller portable.
What We Love: easy maneuvering; great suspension; included cup holder; underseat basket capacity; adjustable handlebar; jogging capabilities; accessory options; color selection
What We Wish It Had: a flatter fold; automatic stroller lock
Great for: active parents; light jogging; sidewalks, stores, grass or dirt trails; combining pretty and practical
Bottom Line: For parents who want equal parts style and substance, the Bumbleride Indie offers the fashion, comfort and functionality to keep newborns through toddlers content while you shop, walk or jog on any terrain.
Parent Rating: "The basket is a good size and it’s smartly designed -- it's wide in the back so it's accessible."
"It worked well on bumpy sidewalks and grass -- big wheels made for a smooth ride with a lot of bounce."
"I wish it had better storage for phone, keys or a drink. It's a wide stroller and going through doorways can be tricky."
"I wish the baby could face me and that it was slightly less bulky when folded."
--Lauren and her 5-month-old daughter from Great Neck, NY
Peg Perego Switch Four
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 45 lbs.Stroller Weight: 23.8 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 34.25" x 22.6" x 36.8" Folded: 38.5" x 14.75" x 12.5"Carrycot/bassinet? Full seat recline plus foot muff creates a bassinet-style enclosureCar seat adapter? Primo Viaggio SIP 30/30 (sold separately) attaches without an adapter; no other adapters currently offeredPrice: $500Get it Now: BabyEarth
Expert Review: The new Switch Four from Peg Perego offers lots of comforts for your baby in a European-style, full-sized stroller. The reversible seat is lushly padded, though it can be tricky to get locked into position when changing direction (hint: look for a circular symbol on the seat and frame to match up). Along with the included rain cover and footmuff, a 4-position recline to flat, mesh "Baby Safe" footrest enclosure and full-coverage canopy create a cozy, protected sleeping nook for baby. The canopy can unzip from the stroller back for added airflow or rotate all the way forward for adjustable sun coverage. While the mesh peekaboo window is difficult to see through, the attached toy hook is nice for keeping your baby entertained. The Switch Four can fold with the seat facing either direction and once you get the hang of it, the fold is relatively easy and the stroller can stand up or roll behind you when folded.
What We Love: adjustable handles; reversible seat; canopy toy hook; multiple recline positions; included footmuff with hand-warming pockets and rain shield; great maneuvering; bassinet-style enclosure
What We Wish It Had: a better peekaboo window; usable underseat basket
Great For: sidewalks, pavement, grass and indoor strolls; cold climates; parents who don’t need much storage on the stroller; parents of different heights
Bottom Line: While the Switch Four won’t work with any car seats except Peg Perego's own, the full-recline and bassinet-style enclosure will keep your newborn cozy -- especially in cold climates when you can use the included footmuff.
"The seat recline is one of the best features. It offers four positions that allow the stroller to grow with the child. I like that I can put my five-month-old in it just using the seat recline and not have to bother with attaching a car seat. Plus the seat recline is very easy to adjust."
"The underseat storage leaves a lot to be desired. It is difficult to get things in and out due to the crossbar. I couldn’t even fit my diaper bag in there which was frustrating."
"One of the neatest features for kids is a loop on the canopy to hang a toy from. I also really love the foot muff. I like that it can keep your child’s legs warm, but also keeps them covered from bugs and the sun."
"I loved the adjustable handles. I am very tall and using the stroller is so comfortable. I never have to worry about adjusting my stride or feeling hunched over the stroller. On the other hand, my mother is very short and she can easily adjust them for her height too."
"The maneuverability is by far one of the best elements of the stroller. I love the smooth ride and how easily it handles tight corners, changes in terrains or bumps in the road. I used the stroller on sidewalks, driveways, paved roads, store carpeting, tile flooring, linoleum and grass, and it performed well on each terrain."
--Meredith and her 5-month-old son from Milwaukee, WI
COOLEST FOLD!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: 6 months up to 40 lbs.Stroller Weight: 32 lbs. with base and toddler seat; 27 lbs. with base and bassinet or car seatDimensions: Assembled: 41" x 28" x 39" Folded: 38" x 14" x 21"Carrycot/bassinet? Coming soonCar seat adapter? Graco car seat adapter, $60Price: $850Get it Now: Giggle.com
Expert Review: The innovators at 4moms have created the futuristic Origami stroller which boasts a power-activated folding system. The two-step process (turn the dial and press a button) automatically opens and closes the stroller (built-in safety features prevent it from closing while a child is in the seat). An LCD screen on the handlebar displays the current temperature, the miles per hour, battery life and a safety indicator as to whether the central bar latch is engaged. Pathway Lights located under the stroller come on automatically in low-light conditions, and Daytime Running Lights on the legs of the stroller can be turned to bright, dim or off depending on your preference. A full battery will get you through 100 opens and closes and while the Origami comes with a charging cord, get this -- it also charges while you walk. You can even purchase the Handle Bar Bag and Cell Phone Charger to keep your phone charged while you stroll. The Origami seat has two built-in cup holders for your baby as well as two on the handlebar for a parent. Plus there is an unusual, tube-shaped storage bag that hangs from the frame to hold blankets and extra bottles. The canopy provides good coverage and a peekaboo window, but the seat only has a modest recline and is suitable only up to 40 lbs.
What We Love: futuristic fold; cup holder storage for parent and child; strolling stats (temperature, odometer, etc.); cell phone charging; headlights for nighttime strolls
What We Wish It Had: bigger underseat storage; higher weight limit; different colors choices without having to buy the additional Color Kit; better maneuvering
Great For: tracking miles logged; hands-free folding; nighttime strolling; parents who are physically unable to fold/unfold a stroller; gadget-lovers;
Bottom Line: Gadget geeks, nighttime walkers and parents who need an auto-open/close will love the futuristic features of the Origami. But for everyday parents, the lower-than-average weight limit, limited recline and mid-range maneuvering might not make the benefits worthwhile.
"The power fold is amazing. I was suprised at how much of a perk it is -- it really makes storage so much easier knowing that it requires so little effort to fold it."
"I know this stroller isn't meant to be portable, but it is really heavy. I had trouble lifting it up and putting it in the trunk of my car, it was so heavy."
"Nightlights are not something I ever thought I would need on a stroller, but they really were an added value when we went for a walk after dinner. It was a nice perk to be able to see the road in front of you."
"I didn't have the cell phone charger, but I would definitely recommend that -- what a cool feature."
-- Gina and her 11-month-old daughter in Miami, Florida
BEST BIRTH-TO-PRESCHOOL STROLLER!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: Newborn up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: With seat -- 25 lbs.; With bassinet - 28.5 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 38" x 25" x 41-42.5"; Folded: 32" x 25" x 15"Carrycot/bassinet option? IncludedCar Seat adapter? Adapters for Graco, Maxi Cosi, Peg Perego and Chicco, $30 - $40Price: $700Get it Now: Baby Earth
Expert Review: Sleek, modern and utterly sophisticated, the 2012 VISTA includes a new adjustable height canopy, lay-flat 5th position recline and fresh color combinations on the new carbon black frame. The canopy and mattress of the included bassinet have also been redesigned to allow for more ventilation. Two of our favorite features are the large, accessible underseat basket and the canopy. Fully extended, the canopy provides excellent coverage, but also includes an additional fold-out SPF 50 sunshade and a large, magnetic-closure peekaboo window. The combination of foam/rubber wheels and improved suspension provide a smooth ride and easy maneuvering for parents. Folding, with or without the main seat attached, is one easy step. And when you're ready to expand your family, you can purchase the Rumble Seat to transform your VISTA into a double stroller.
What We Love: maneuvering; magnetic-closure peek-a-boo window; reversible elevated seat; superb canopy coverage; fold-out SPF 50 sunshade; vivid color selection; extendable handlebar; easy access to underseat storage; included rain shield and mesh bug net
What We Wish It Had: side carry handle for easier lifting when folded; cup holder; ability to fold with seat facing backwards
Great for: easily switching between being single and double stroller; parents that don't need to fold the stroller often; providing excellent sun protection
Bottom Line: While its multi-feature canopy makes the VISTA ideal for sunny locales, the style and performance make it an excellent choice for any growing family.
Parent Rating:"The look of the stroller is modern and sleek. I love the look!"
"The underseat storage is one of my favorite features. There is more then enough room to put all of the kids' and my stuff. It is so much bigger than other strollers I've used."
"I love the harness straps and the adjustable seat positions. The straps are so soft and easy to use!"
"One of my favorite features is the on/off brake pedal -- just one gentle click to lock the wheels."
"The way this stroller maneuvers is fantastic. It is lightweight and fits like a glove through all doorways."
-- Kristin and her 4-month-old from Hubertus, WI
Baby Jogger City Versa
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: 6 months up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: 26.2 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 39.5" x 23.25" x 32-42"; Folded: 33" x 8.5" 23.25"Carrycot/bassinet? City Versa Pram, $190Car seat adapter? adapter fits Peg Perego, Maxi Cosi, Chicco, Graco and Evenflo, $70Price: $450Get it Now: Right Start
Expert Review: The brand new City Versa is a compact stroller with a big features list -- a reversible seat, adjustable handlebars, extendable, adjustable footrest and the ability to fold compactly with the seat facing either direction. The 8" molded plastic wheels make the City Versa suitable for malls, pavement and sidewalks, but lack the heft to handle rougher terrain. The only downsides: A hand-operated parking brake may take some getting used to, and the well-padded, reversible seat switches position easily, but only offers two levels of recline. There are no included accessories on the City Versa, but the underseat storage basket is large and accessible regardless of which way the seat is facing. The two-step fold isn't as fast as the Baby Jogger City Mini GT, but is still easy, one-handed and leaves the stroller compact. FYI -- if you're looking to use the City Versa with an infant, you'll need to invest in either the car seat adapter ($70) or City Versa Pram ($190) until the child is 6 months old.
What We Love: reversible seat; quick fold; adjustable handlebar; adjustable and extendable footrest; ability to fold with seat facing either direction; large underseat basket
What We Wish It Had: larger, all-terrain wheels; more recline positions
Great For: indoors and sidewalks; neighborhood walks; parents of different heights
Bottom Line: Best suited for neighborhood strolls and store aisles, the City Versa provides plenty of luxuries in a compact frame.
"The stroller had a rugged, heavy-duty vibe. My husband thought it was especially cool because it was all black."
"The underseat storage area was very generous, definitely enough room to use shopping and you could easily fit a few days worth of groceries under there. The accessibility was good from behind, however a little bit challenging from the front due to the large foot rest."
"My favorite feature of this stroller is that it feels more 'open' than our other stroller. My daughter loves to look around, and I feel like this stroller gives her a nice panorama."
"I like the adjustable handlebar. My husband and I are quite different in height so it’s nice to be able to customize the bar."
"I only wish that this stroller was lighter. I had a hard time getting it in and out of the trunk, and I felt like it was a little too heavy for me to be heaving around."
"This stroller has great maneuverability. The front wheels swivel or can be locked in place. It can easily be pushed with one or two hands. It turns like a dream."
--Kristin and her 10-month-old daughter from Walpole, MA
BEST CANOPY COVERAGE!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 55 lbs.Stroller Weight: 19.8 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 33.5" x 20.7" x 41.5" Folded: 39.9" x 12.8" x 11.8"Carrycot/bassinet? Carry Cot, $150Car seat adapter? Adapter not needed for Cybex Aton car seat; universal car seat adapter for Graco and Chicco, $25Price: $350Get it Now: Target.com
Expert Review: Available in both subdued neutrals and eye-popping brights, the Callisto is the quintessential city stroller -- high on style and narrow in width with a quick and compact fold. The highlight of the Callisto is its amazing canopy that slides up and down the stroller sides to adjust the height, has two large coverage panels plus an additional zip-out extension that provides coverage all the way to the belly bar. The canopy also boasts 50+ UV protection on the fabric plus a storage pocket on the hood. The one drawback is that the canopy doesn't have a peekaboo window. The stroller also has excellent interior-seat padding, including a head pillow and a multi-position recline (though it doesn't recline to a completely flat position.) The underseat basket isn't large, but it is easily accessible except when the seat is fully reclined. Maneuvering is smooth and potentially one-handed depending on the weight of your child. The fast, three-step fold collapses the stroller to a compact and easy-to-carry size.
What We Love: amazing canopy; narrow footprint; interior seat padding; easy, compact fold; underseat basket accessibility
What We Wish It Had: peekaboo window in canopy; more height options for handlebar extension; larger underseat basket
Great For: crowded sidewalks; narrow store aisles; sun protection (hood has 50+ UV protection); frequent stroller nappers; traveling
Bottom Line: Chic, space-saving and full of comforts, the Cybex Callisto stroller provides a luxurious ride for your baby, amazing canopy coverage and a compact fold.
"The stroller provides four levels of recline, but it is lacking is a fully-flat position. It does, however, recline enough to accommodate a newborn who can't hold his head up."
"There is one pocket on the back of the sun canopy which is ideal for my cell phone and a bottle or sippy cup, but since it is just one large pocket, things aren't organized and the cups had better be leak-proof."
"I especially like the padded bumper bar that keeps him in. Also, the material is great in that a teething baby can chew on it without fear of him eating pieces of it as can happen with foam ones."
"I love the look of the stroller -- sleek, sophisticated and stylish. Also, I love the super large sun shade -- a must for not only blocking the sun, but also allowing the baby more darkness during naps on the go."
"I wish the stroller wasn't so heavy -- it is not the easiest stroller to pick up and put in my trunk. I also would like more storage both in the bottom basket as well as by the handle."
"I pushed it in the mall, outside on the street and on the sidewalk. It pushed very well and was narrow enough for doorways."
--Laura and her newborn son from Boca Raton, FL
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: infant up to 45 lbs.Stroller Weight: 19 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 21” x 30” x 40”; Folded: 35” x 12” x 21”Carrycot/bassinet? None offeredCar seat adapter? Included universal adaptor fits Graco, Peg Perego, Chicco, Combi, Baby Trend and Britax.Price: $400Get it Now: Fawn & Forest
Expert Review: Chic, compact and extremely versatile, the Bumbleride Flyer offers parents lots of features and function in a lighter weight frame. One of the highlights of the Flyer is the adjustable and reversible handlebar that easily switches from one side to the other allowing baby to see you or see the world -- without having to take baby out of the seat. The Flyer also has a large canopy that provides excellent sun protection, a peekaboo window, a small zippered storage pocket and a zip-off back for added airflow on warmer days. The seat itself is nicely padded and includes both harness covers and an infant headrest cushion. There are four positions of recline including a very upright position and a flat recline position. When baby is napping, the footrest also adjusts upright and fabric panels underneath the footrest snap on to the seat sides creating a bassinette-style enclosure. Tight turns in stores or city streets are easy to do though the Flyer still preforms best on smooth surfaces rather than grass and gravel. Two hands are needed for the one-step folding process and to engage the two manual frame locks, but the process is fast and easy to do. Need more reasons to love Bumbleride? All the included extras. The Flyer comes with a cup holder, rain shield, bumper bar and universal car seat adapter bar that fits infant seats by all the major brands.
What We Love: large canopy with peekaboo window, storage pocket and zip-off back; reversible handle; adjustable handlebar height; included cup holder, rain cover, bumper bar and seat pads; large underseat basket
What We Wish It Had: more color options
Great For: warm climates; easily switching between parent-facing and world-facing; parents of different heights; one stroller that can adapt and grow with you from infancy to toddlerhood; errands; all-day outings
Bottom Line: The Bumbleride Flyer is a great value for its combination of style, performance, length of use and included extras.
"This stroller is chic, modern and comfortable."
"I love the large canopy -- it protects the baby from the sun as well as the wind."
"The reversible handle is super helpful when I need to see the baby or tend to her needs when she's crying."
"The multiple recline positions kept my child very content while using this stroller. She slept comfortably and while awake, she seemed to enjoy the ride."
"This stroller is easy to steer and provides a smooth, comfortable ride. I was able to steer it one-handed and easily make turns in small spaces. I also used the stroller to get on and off the bus. I was able to close the stroller easily as well as hold my baby with one and hand the stroller in the other."
-- Sandy and her 5-month-old from Brooklyn, NY
Maclaren Quest Sport 2012
GREAT FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION!Expert Rating:
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 55 lbs.Stroller Weight: 13.4lb (without hood, shopping basket or rain cover)Dimensions: Assembled: 31.5" x 18.7" x 41.5" Folded: 12" x 10" x 41.5"Carrycot/bassinet? None offeredCar seat adapter? None offeredPrice: $270Get it Now: Pish Posh Baby
Expert Review: Updated for 2012, the new Maclaren Quest Sport includes a number of improvements including a near-flat, fourth recline position making the stroller now suitable for infants, a removable 5-point harness to make cleaning easier, an upgrade to metal for the leg rest and the option of a black or silver frame. In addition to the flat recline, the Quest Sport also allows you to transform the seat into a bassinet-style enclosure with a few snap changes on the headrest and pulling out a hidden mesh foot barrier from the underside of the footrest. The seat has decent padding, but parents of newborns might want to invest in a Maclaren Comfort Pack for additional support. Rain-resistant material, a UV-protected peekaboo window (only usable when seat is reclined) and excellent interior head room inside give the Quest Sport's canopy high marks. The lightweight frame is easy to push (though the design requires two hands), and its short length makes it a breeze to maneuver through store aisles and crowded city sidewalks. The two-step fold is super compact, and the stroller has both a side handle and longer shoulder strap for easy transport up stairs or on and off subways, trains or buses. Our two gripes -- the underseat basket is impossible to access with the seat reclined and difficult all other times. Plus the Quest Sport struggled to handle bumpy sidewalks and other rough terrain.
What We Love: lightweight frame; one-handed recline; storage pocket on hood; dual carry straps; great maneuvering; included rain cover
What We Wish It Had: tighter close for auto-lock mechanism; more useful peekaboo window; useable basket; easier access to recline latch (hood material covers it)
Great For: public transportation; carrying up/down stairs; smooth surfaces; crowded sidewalks; narrow store aisles; space-saving strolling or storing
Bottom Line: Without a usable underseat basket, the Quest Sport is short on storage, but its nimble maneuvering, space-saving fold and easy ability to use with public transportation makes the stroller a great choice for city-dwellers and frequent travelers.
"The Maclaren Quest is lightweight and compact, but it doesn't feel cheap or unstable. It's a solid, great looking stroller."
"I love the seat's four-position recline. It is very smooth, easy to use and both my 2-year-old and newborn had no problem falling asleep in the stroller."
"One of my favorite features is the wheel-lock. It's easy to use and sandal-friendly. The shoulder strap is a cool feature, too. I can sling the stroller over my shoulder and keep my hands free to schlep kids and gear."
"This is definitely a two-handed stroller, but it maneuvers great, is easy to turn and can make sharp turns in crowded coffee shops!"
"The size of the underseat basket is okay, but it's not easily accessible. It's pretty low to the ground and there is not a lot of room to reach in to grab things."
--Taylor and her 4-week-old daughter from Ventura, CA
Graco FastAction Fold LX Travel System
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: newborn up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: 22 lbs.; 29.5 lbs. with car seatDimensions: Assembled: 41" x 27.5" x 22" Folded: 30" x 11" x 19"Carrycot/bassinet? None offeredCar seat adapter? Car seat includedPrice: $220Get it Now: Buy Buy Baby
Expert Review: If you're looking for the convenience of an all-in-one travel system, the new FastAction Fold LX from Graco is worth checking out. Packaged with the award-winning SnugRide30 car seat, the FastAction Fold stroller includes a multi-position, one-handed recline, a convertible three- or five-point, padded harness and a mid-sized underseat basket. The seat canopy has mesh sides and peekaboo window for improved airflow as well as an additional foldout extension, but the coverage is still just moderate (though when paired with the car seat, the dual canopies provide complete coverage for your newborn). Included parent and child trays provide space for drinks and snacks though they seemed shallow and left our drinks a bit tippy. Maneuvering is decent on smooth sidewalks and indoor hallways, but the small, hard plastic wheels can't handle rougher terrain. The highlight of the stroller is the fast, one-step fold -- pull a handle in the seat base and the stroller folds in half, locking shut. Pull the same handle to quickly reopen the stroller. The included car seat suits infants from 4 to 30 lbs., includes a cushioned head support and locks seamlessly into the stroller for easy car-to-stroller transitions.
What We Love: fast, one-step fold; parent and child trays; included award-winning car seat; easy open; easy car seat-stroller connection
What We Wish It Had: deeper cup holders; more coverage on stroller canopy; all-terrain wheels
Great For: smooth sidewalks and interior spaces; fast open and fold
Bottom Line: This affordable travel system comes with a great infant car seat and fast stroller fold, but is best suited to indoor strolling and smooth sidewalks.
"I find the storage area a bit small. I really have the wedge the diaper bag in it."
"I like that it's very easy to put the car seat into the stroller. Plus the car seat puts my daughter at a good height, and we can easily look at each other."
"My daughter seems comfortable in the car seat. However, the stroller did not handle my town's bumpy sidewalks well. We went for a walk and just as she would begin to fall asleep, a sidewalk bump would abruptly wake her up every time. I wish the stroller had better shocks!"
"The stroller is quite easy to maneuver with one hand or two. I was able to make tight turns without a problem."
"The cup holders are not great. I had a drink in one and it kept spilling out onto my cell phone!"
"It has a folding system I have never seen before -- you pull a red strap located in the seating area of the stroller -- but once I figured it out it was very easy to use. It's billed as a 'one-second' folding system and that's essentially true."
-- Kathy and her 2-month-old daughter, from Maplewood, NJ
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: 3 months to 55 lbs.Stroller Weight: 22 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled 43" x 34" x 19.5"; Folded: 36.6" x 19" x 12.6"Carrycot/bassinet option? AVIO Bassinet, $170Car seat adapter? Available for Peg Perego, $39, and Graco, $59Price: $499Get it Now: A Dolce Baby
Expert Review: At only 19.5" wide, the Avio is a narrow, city stroller with plenty of extras. The comfy, forward-facing seat offers four levels of recline and three leg rest positions to ensure your child can be comfortable for long rides. The huge sun canopy can rotate all the way down to the bumper bar when the seat is upright, and the peekaboo window and reflective strips on the side provide peace of mind for the parent. The Avio comes with a handful of accessories including a rain cover, bumper bar, bassinet adaptors and cup holder as well as a roomy (though shallow) underseat basket. Maneuvering is easy, but the small, rubber wheels make the Avio better suited for smooth sidewalks and indoor strolls. While it's a boxy fold, the stroller is simple to close and will fit easily in the trunk of a small car.
What We Love: Narrow design; easy to maneuver in tight spaces; simple fold; integrated cup holder and included rain cover; roomy underseat basket; one-handed steering
What We Wish It Had: a reversible seat; all-terrain tires; deeper underseat basket
Great for: tight spaces and narrow store aisles; sidewalks and indoors
Bottom Line: The narrow frame of the Avio makes it ideal for city sidewalks and store aisles, while the number of included extras are a perk for babies and parents.
Parent Rating: "The best thing about the style is that it's narrow. Living in the city, I need my stroller to take up as little sidewalk as possible. Also, the narrowness doesn't seem to take away from the comfort. There is still padding all around the baby."
"Super-easy to turn around tight corners and simple to open or close."
"It would be nice if the underseat storage was slightly bigger and more closed. It seems as though things can fall out."
"It would be nice to have the option of bigger tires with treading so you could take the stroller on bumpy dirt paths."
-- Stephanie and her newborn from Brooklyn, NY
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: Up to 45 lbs.Stroller Weight: 23 lbs (chassis and seat), 27.5 lbs (chassis and carrycot)Dimensions: Assembled: 41" x 22.4" x 48"; Folded: 28" x 22.4" x 15"Carrycot/bassinet option: Carrycot Complete, $225Car seat adapter? Adapters available for Peg Perego, Graco and Maxi Cosi, $80Price: $1100Get it Now: All Modern
Expert Review: The Xplory's signature feature is its raised baby seat that gives your child a great view and makes eye contact easier. At over $1000, The Xplory is the Escalade of strollers, but it can grow with your child from birth to preschool. Start with the infant carrycot or infant car seat, graduate to using the seat rear-facing when your tot is six months or older, and then finally flip it forward-facing. The seat, which can be lowered as your child grows bigger and more independent, has 3 recline settings and an expanding footrest. A rain cover and a bug cover are also included. The sun canopy is huge, though you can zip off parts or make it smaller. Instead of a traditional underseat basket, the Xplory has a zippered tote that can be detached from the chassis to double as a diaper bag or shopping tote. The Xplory also offers a smooth ride, excellent suspension and can be steered easily with one hand. The fold, however, is a bit complicated and time-consuming as the stroller folds in various pieces and requires multiple steps.
What We Love: super-smooth ride; adjustable height and angle of handlebar; adjustable seat height and depth; modern look
What We Wish It Had: quicker, more compact, one-piece fold; better storage space
Great for: city and suburban life; navigating tight spaces; concrete, parks
Bottom line: Best for urban/suburban moms who don't need to rely on public transportation or go food shopping with it.
Parent Rating:"My baby falls asleep every time we put him in it. We even roll it around the apartment when he gets fussy, and it works like a charm every time (knock on wood!)."
"I absolutely loved how this stroller looks -- super sleek and modern. My only wish is that it was a little shorter. At times, I felt like I was steering a ship because the stroller seemed a little long."
"I wish the Xplory had an easier, smaller fold and a lighter weight."-- Bonnie and her newborn son from New York, NY
Quinny Zapp Xtra with Folding Seat
Stroller StatsWeight Capacity: 6 months up to 50 lbs.Stroller Weight: 19.6 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 31" x 23.5" x 40.5" Folded: 28" x 14" x 13"Carrycot/bassinet? None offeredCar seat adapter? Adapters for Maxi-Cosi Mico/Prezi included; Zapp Xtra Multi-Model Adapter works with Safety 1st, Graco, Chicco, Combi and Britax, $50Price: $300Get it Now: Albee Baby
Expert Review: Make sure you are buying the 2012 version of the stroller now called the Quinny Zapp Xtra With Folding Seat that has been updated to allow parents to fold the stroller with the seat attached -- a requested upgrade from customers. Available in three colors, the stroller has a padded reversible seat, multi-position, one-handed recline and a decent canopy though the narrow peekaboo window makes viewing difficult. The basket is mid-sized, but it is also nearly inaccessible when the seat is upright, though slightly easier when the seat is reclined or facing backwards. Plus the basket design allows heavy item to drag on the ground. The fold is very compact making this stroller ideal for apartment dwellers or those that need to fit it in a compact trunk, but the fold (and open) involves a number of steps. Plus if you don’t remember to pull the transport straps out from the basket before you fold, you’ll need to open it again to retrieve them or you’ll have no way to lock the stroller closed and carry it.
What We Love: narrow length; reversible seat; compact fold; ability to fold with seat attached
What We Wish It Had: adjustable handlebar; faster fold; cup holder for parent and child; rubber wheels; larger peekaboo window; better locking mechanism when folded;
Great For: narrow city strolling; sidewalks; indoor stroller; compact storage in small trunks or apartments;
Bottom Line: You’ll have to put up with a number of steps if you want the Zapp Xtra With Folding Seat's compact fold.
"I found the seat easier and smoother to recline without the child in the stroller. When I tried to recline with the child in, the seat was a bit unstable and reclined too fast."
"The underseat storage is good-sized, but difficult to access."
"It would be great if there was a mesh pocket inside the seat to hold toys, bags of snacks or a sippy cup."
"My 9-month-old seemed comfortable and enjoyed the seat, but when I tried it with my 3-year-old, she was far too big for the stroller -- even though she fits comfortably in many other stroller brands."
"Overall, the stroller turned with great ease. However, sometimes it pulled to one side so it really requires two hands to keep it moving in a straight line."
"The compactness was my favorite feature. The stroller was light, easy to lift and fit into my trunk."
--Keri and her 9-month-old daughter from Milwaukee, WI
A version of this story originally appeared on iVillage.