3 & 4 wheel stollers and prams review

CHOICE tested a mix of three-wheel and four-wheel strollers and prams for safety, durability and ease of use.
 
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03.Profiles

Profiles - What to buy

Prices are recommended retail advised by manufacturers in August 2008.

These strollers passed all our safety and durability tests. They’re ranked here according to ease of use scores.

Childcare Hola 0151410-140

Price: $400
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Easy to operate the locking mechanism for the swivel wheels.
  • Easy to convert the seat to a bassinet (or vice versa) as there are no extra parts required.
  • Reversible seat.
  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain, insect and boot (leg) covers.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Tyre pump.

Bad points

  • Nothing in particular.

Note: this model is exclusive to Toys R Us.

Bébé Care Caprice 015415-172

Price: $500
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Easy to convert the seat to a bassinet (or vice versa) as there are no extra parts required.
  • Reversible seat.
  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain, insect and boot (leg) covers.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Parent's bag with change mat, pouch and wallet.

Bad points

  • Nothing in particular.

Love N Care Uni Coupe BP9756N

Price: $499
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Reversible handle.
  • Insect cover.
  • Padded shoulder straps.

Bad points

  • Handle height/length not adjustable.
  • No rain or boot (leg) cover.

Mountain Buggy Single Urban Elite

Price: $860
Type: Three-wheeler

Good points

  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Tyre pump.
  • Extra padded seat cover.
  • Parent's bag with change mat.

Bad points

  • No rain, insect or boot (leg) covers.

Steelcraft Strider 30132T

Price: $449
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Reversible seat.
  • Adjustable handle length.
  • Rain cover.
  • Padded shoulder straps.

Bad points

  • No insect or boot (leg) cover.

Profiles: the rest

These models each failed at least one durability and/or safety test. Prices are recommended retail, advised by manufacturers in August 2008, or the price we paid.

Worth considering: these two models' durability failures might have been one-off incidents, so they're still worth considering. If you decide to buy one, check them carefully in store first; if possible, give them a test run with a load in the stroller seat.

Swallow Whisper

Price: $299

Type: Three-wheeler

Good points

  • Easy to operate the swivel wheel locking mechanism.
  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Leg cover.

Bad points

  • Failed a durability test — the front wheel wobbled excessively and pulled to one side while on our rolling road rig. The front wheel appeared to be misaligned. The manufacturer said they had not had any problems like this.
  • No pads on shoulder straps.
  • No rain or insect cover.

Phil & Teds Dash SPD

Price: $750
Type: Three-wheeler

Good points

  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain cover.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • A toddler seat was supplied with the model we purchased (note that we didn't test the toddler seat).

Bad points

  • Failed a durability test — the handle was damaged in our kerb mounting test. This would be particularly problematic for this model as the brakes are controlled by moving the handle.
  • No insect or boot (leg) cover.

Not recommended

The remaining models all failed at least one safety test, and many also failed a durability test.

Bugaboo Cameleon 7400 RD01

Price: $1600
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Seat and bassinet included.
  • Reversible seat.
  • Adjustable handle length.
  • Rain and insect covers.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Extra fabric seat liner.
  • Tyre pump.

Bad points

  • Failed a safety test — there's a risk of the child's fingers getting caught between the handle shaft and the seat side while the handle is being reversed.
  • Seat must be detached before folding the stroller.
  • No leg cover.

Peg Perego Uno

Price: $849
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Leg cover.

Bad points

  • Failed safety tests — there's a risk of the child's fingers getting caught between the handle shaft and the seat side while the handle is being reversed.
  • It also has no effective head barrier to prevent a child slipping out of the head end of the stroller when the seat is fully reclined
  • Failed a durability test: its rear wheels came off while on our rolling road rig.
  • No rain or insect cover.
  • No pads on shoulder straps.

Bertini X2 Automatic 004863

Price: $1117 (includes frame, gliding seat and bassinet)
Type: Four-wheeler

Good points

  • Reversible seat.
  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain cover and leg cover.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Extra padded seat liner.
  • Tyre pump.

Bad points

  • Failed a safety test — the foot opening isn't big enough; when the leg support is in its highest two positions, there's a risk that that an unsecured child could slide down and get their head trapped. The manufacturer advised that some samples have footrests with broken stops, which may account for this problem, and they are investigating further.
  • Failed a durability test — the frame collapsed during our dynamic durability test. The manufacturer voluntarily recalled the X2 in May 2008 due to breakages of the bolts securing the basket frame.
  • No insect cover.

Maclaren MX3

Price: $650
Type: Three-wheeler

Good points

  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain and leg covers.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Plastic carry bag.

Bad points

  • Failed safety tests — the seat can be pulled away from the frame by tugging on the harness waist straps (which could increase the chance of a child wriggling out of the stroller). Its foot opening is too small when the leg support is in its highest position, creating a risk that that an unsecured child could slide down and get their head trapped.
  • Failed a durability test — its front wheel came off in our high speed (non-standard) dynamic durability test. The manufacturer disagreed with our results (for the safety and durability failures), saying they've had this model certified to the Australian standard and have had no reports of the front wheel detaching.
  • No insect cover.

Red Castle Shop'n Jogg Disc II

Price: $799
Type: Three-wheeler

Good points

  • Adjustable handle height.
  • Rain and insect covers.
  • Padded shoulder straps.
  • Tyre pump.
  • Comes with components for attaching a bassinet, plus lubricant, wheel covers, spare press studs and inner tube, and allen key.

Bad points

  • Failed a safety test — the seat can be pulled away from the frame by tugging on the harness waist straps (which could increase the chance of a child wriggling out of the stroller).
  • Failed a durability test — its front wheel wobbled excessively in our high speed (non-standard) dynamic durability test. The manufacturer disagreed with our results (for the safety and durability failures), .
  • No leg cover.
 

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