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The Push for the Best Full-size Strollers of 2017

The Cruz offers many features that make it a winner for ease of use.
By Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz
Friday
Trying to find the best full-size stroller? We were too! We considered over 150 strollers before narrowing down to test the top 19 competitors head-to-head. We spent two months testing to determine which products are the best and why. We have all the information you need to narrow your options to find the best choice for your family and wallet thanks to our hands-on, side-by-side testing process that includes more than 30 specific tests. Read on to remove some of the mystery and confusion about one of the more expensive baby gear purchases you'll make.

Updated April 2017
We have made updates to this review including testing the latest product versions for several recently updated strollers and added comparison charts for each metric. The best surprise for 2017 was finding that the most expensive products were not always the top performers (our Price vs. Value chart shows this in a graph).

Best Overall Full-Size Stroller


BOB Revolution Flex


Editors' Choice Award

$449.99
at Amazon
See It

Great maneuverability, even off-road
Nice Quality
Good for jogging
Heavy
Larger
The BOB Revolution Flex won our hearts and an Editors' Choice award with improved ease of use in their new version. With one of the highest overall scores and the best performance for maneuverability, it is easy to see why the Revolution impressed. This BOB is easy to push and turn with great off-road capabilities and the potential for running. It sports large pneumatic tires, adjustable tracking, and a locking swivel front wheel that keeps it moving straight no matter what it encounters. This stroller offers a variety of features and functions for baby's comfort and parent convenience and we think many parents will be attracted to the versatility of being jog and trail worthy that they can easily overlook the larger size and weight.

Read Full Review: BOB Revolution

High-end with a Reasonable Price


UPPAbaby Cruz


The UPPAbaby Cruz
Editors' Choice Award

$499.99
at Amazon
See It

Easy to use
Lightweight and compact
No convenience features
Little harder to push and turn
The UPPAbaby Cruz is a sleek no-nonsense product with a top score in ease of use and good scores for quality, ease of setup, and weight and folded size. While this is not the lightest option in the group, it does have an unbelievably low weight of 21.6 pounds, which is 3 pounds lower than the average. The Cruz has a large canopy, giant storage with a max weight of 25 lbs, and really easy to use seatback recline and leg rest adjustability. The Cruz lost a little ground in testing for maneuverability because it is a little larger and the 4 wheel design meant it paled in comparison to the 3 wheeled models that were easier to navigate, but it isn't hard to push or turn and scored above average in our tests. However, the foam filled plastic wheels did make pushing and turning on unpaved surfaces harder. This means the Cruz may not be the best bet for adventurous parents who plan to off-road with baby for trail style outings.

Read Full Review: UPPAbaby Cruz

Best Value Winner


Britax B-Agile 3


Best Value Award

$216.00
(20% off)
at Amazon
See It

Budget friendly
Smaller and lighter
Harder to push and turn
Harder to use
The Britax B-Agile 3 is a budget-friendly stroller that offers a simple design with high performance at a price point that is better than most. This lightweight product has a very easy fold and is small enough to fit in most trunks or be carried with ease. The rubber covered handlebar feels good in the hand and is an adequate height for most parents. It scored well in ease of setup and has brakes that are easy to set and release. This reasonably priced option is a nice looking, quality product that can be used with Britax Click & Go infant car seats and others with additional adapters (sold separately). This stroller also scored well in our lightweight stroller review, proving it has what it takes to do double duty as an umbrella product as well.

Read Full Review: Britax B-Agile 3

Recall on Adapters
Britax has issued a recall for the Click & Go car seat adapters that come standard with the B-Agile 3. These adapters should be discarded and parents should contact Britax to receive a free remedy kit. New 2017 versions of the B-Agile 3 do not have the same concerns and do not fall under this recall.

Money Saving Full-size Stroller


Baby Jogger City Mini


Best Value Award

$207.00
(20% off)
at Amazon
See It

Price
Small and lightweight
Harder to use
Lower quality
The Baby Jogger City Mini is a lightweight, compact option that earned high scores for maneuverability and weight and folded size, and has a very friendly price made even friendlier if you consider its ability to function as a lightweight stroller. The City Mini was easy to push and turn with a trike design that makes turning and navigating crowded spaces a breeze. We were able to push it one-handed on most flat surfaces, but despite its moniker, it is not suitable for jogging. The City Mini has an easy to use harness and recline adjustment, as well as a nice sized storage bin and canopy with 2 peek-a-boo windows and a nicely padded seat for added passenger comfort. While it only has shocks on the front wheel and a stationary handlebar, it is still a nice product for a very nice price. The City Mini may not be the best option for parents who want to go off the beat path as the plastic wheels and limited suspension features will make it frustrating to push and uncomfortable for passengers.

Read Full Review: Baby Jogger City Mini

Best for Versatility


UPPAbaby Vista


The UPPAbaby Vista
Top Pick Award

$789.99
(8% off)
at Amazon
See It

Easy to use
High quality
Heavy and large
Higher price
The UPPAbaby Vista earned the top score in this review with impressive results in almost every test. Unfortunately, thanks to a $820 list price and heavier size, it missed winning an Editors' Choice award that went to its smaller and less expensive brother the UPPAbaby Cruz. The truth is this full-size stroller is a very nice product that testers really enjoyed using and loved for its versatility of seating and features. This stroller is easy to use, easy to push and can accommodate up to three children, making it a versatile option for growing families with the quality to last for several years. The Vista comes standard with a bassinet and toddler seat. The frame accepts up to two infant car seats at the same time, or 2 toddler seats, and other variations including several using the bassinet with seats that can sit forward or back. This makes the Vista one of the most versatile in the review.

Read Full Review: UPPAbaby Vista

up to 5 products
Score Product Price Our Take
73
BOB Revolution Flex $450
Editors' Choice Award
Great moving jogger with all-terrain capability that works well as a full-size stroller
72
UPPAbaby Vista $860
Top Pick Award
Top Pick for versatility and urban living with room to grow
70
UPPAbaby Cruz $500
Editors' Choice Award
Editors' Choice stroller we really enjoyed with lots of features that work well
69
Baby Jogger City Mini GT $360
Tight turning, easy mover with a disappointing tipping hazard
66
Mountain Buggy Swift $450
Easy to push, does well in tight spaces, but lacks some functionality
66
Britax B-Agile 3 $270
Best Value Award
An above average option with a budget friendly price
65
Baby Jogger City Mini $260
Best Value Award
An easy to push and turn option that has a good price for its performance and what it offers
64
Bugaboo Bee3 $719
Not many features for the price, but good for urban use and infant car seats
63
Baby Jogger City Select $500
Not the best Baby Jogger we've tested with pushing limitations
60
Peg Perego Booklet $350
Average stroller with few conveniences and lower quality
59
Baby Trend Expedition $150
Easy to maneuver, budget friendly option that has limited functionality
58
Graco Aire3 $180
Hard to use stroller that has poor maneuverability
58
Bugaboo Cameleon3 $1,149
Poor overall performance despite quality materials and a nice look
57
Chicco Bravo LE $250
Nice features, but they aren't good enough to make up for being hard to maneuver
54
Bumbleride Indie 4 $600
Nice materials, but we struggled to use most of the features
53
Stokke Scoot $600
Nice looking, but struggled in our tests for performance
50
Inglesina Quad $600
Disappointing performance considering the higher list price
46
Quinny Buzz Xtra $600
Average stroller with no standout features or impressive performance
40
4moms Origami $850
Futuristic design doesn't help poor maneuverability and storage

Analysis and Test Results


We started by considering more than 150 competing full-size strollers, and eventually narrowed our options down to the 19 top finalists to put through our side-by-side comparison process for everything from maneuverability to ease of use. The finalists were selected based on their quality, innovations, and/or popularity. Our goal is to provide you with practical and detailed information on the products most likely on your short-list. The table above shows a comparison of the overall scores for each stroller we tested.

Twenty one of the most popular strollers on the market  including our award winners (up front).
Twenty one of the most popular strollers on the market, including our award winners (up front).

During testing, we focused on six key metrics, with ease of use and maneuverability being emphasized and scrutinized in our evaluation process. Our ratings were based on a combination of real-world testing (i.e. strolling with babies, toddlers and young children), and extensive side-by-side in–house lab tests where each product was rated compared to the competition.

We combined an extensive real world hands-on testing process with specific lab tests to compare each product's performance side-by-side.
We combined an extensive real world hands-on testing process with specific lab tests to compare each product's performance side-by-side.

Ease of Use


Ease of use encompasses the features you will need to use repeatedly every day. For example, storage options and how easy they are to use and how much they carry. Similarly, we looked at sunshades and whether or not they cover your baby, how easy they are to use, and if they offer a peek-a-boo window or ventilation. These kinds of features will impact the bulk of your experience, and a strollers ability to perform as desired and expected will be the difference between one you enjoy and one you'd like to kick to the curb.

The Vista is a pleasure to use.
The Cruz offers many features that make it a winner for ease of use.

In our tests, the UPPAbaby Vista (above left) and the UPPAbaby Cruz (above left) both earned high scores for ease of use. These products have nicely executed daily features that parents use the most. Both strollers offer high maximum storage capacity and the largest canopies in the review. They both have adjustable leg rests, easy to use recline mechanisms, and useful indicators to ensure the seat is properly adjusted.


The top two scoring strollers lacked nice-to-have amenities such as a parent tray or child tray, but these can be purchased separately. We think these convenience features are useful and recommend you consider the cost of adding them in your purchase decision.

The storage basket on the 4moms Origami is small and sort of useless for holding a normal sized diaper bag.
The storage basket on the 4moms Origami is small and sort of useless for holding a normal sized diaper bag.

The worst performers in our ease of use tests were the Quinny Buzz Xtra and the 4moms Origami. Both suffered from smaller sunshades, awkward design choices, smaller storage bins, and are large when folded and relatively heavy. The 4moms includes a parent tray and lots of gadgets, but its performance in our tests was disappointing compared to the competition.

The Cruz is the easiest to put together in the group   scoring a perfect 10 out of 10.
The Cruz is the easiest to put together in the group , scoring a perfect 10 out of 10.

Ease of Setup


Ease of setup was the least weighted category because it is a one-time task. We considered how long it takes, difficulty, required tools, and how useful the manual is.

The easiest to assemble is the UPPAbaby Cruz, with a perfect 10 of 10. It took just over four and a half minutes to put the UPPAbaby Cruz together with a simple start up guide, and we found it is so intuitive you may not need the manual. Close behind is the BOB Revolution Flex, Britax B-Agile 3, and UPPAbaby Vista, all of which set up in about 5 and a half minutes with great documentation.

The worst to set-up is the Bugaboo Bee 3, which took us more than 23 minutes to assemble, due to far more component assembly than the competition and documentation so poor that we put different portions together incorrectly.

We were disappointed to find many of the more expensive products ($500-$1,200) were the hardest to setup, due in part to poor documentation and sometimes a lot of parts. These include the Bugaboo Cameleon 3, Quinny Buzz Xtra, 4moms Origami, Baby Jogger City Select, and Bumbleride Indie 4. We find the combination of a high price tag and poor documentation to be particularly distasteful. Great documentation is largely a function of an investment decision by the manufacturer to create clear, easy-to-understand documentation in each language they consider a target market. In our experience, poor documentation typically takes an "international approach" where vague illustrations without text are in one part of the manual, and small text referring to the illustrations is in a different section.

A relatively small width  larger tires with a quality swivel  such as the BOB's (shown above) help simplify navigating narrow supermarket aisles.
A relatively small width, larger tires with a quality swivel, such as the BOB's (shown above) help simplify navigating narrow supermarket aisles.

Maneuverability


To test maneuverability, we put each product through a convoluted course of turns and corners over a variety of surface types including pavement, gravel, grass, snow/ice, and dirt. A particularly revealing test was navigating crowded supermarkets. To compare each product in exactly the same way, we created the crowded-supermarket-from-hell simulator which is a multi-surface obstacle course that contains all kinds of tight corners and real-world maneuver challenges we observed in real life. We then scored each product on ease of pushing, ease of turning, and performance over various surfaces.


The best performers for maneuverability all share a 3-wheel design, and all have larger rubber tires. The top scoring product, the BOB Revolution Flex, earned a 9 of 10 and features pneumatic (air-filled) tires, adjustable suspension and tracking, and a lockable swivel front wheel. The second place options scored 8s and included the Mountain Buggy Swift, Baby Jogger City Mini GT, and the Baby Trend Expedition. All of these options performed well in our obstacle course and managed rougher terrain better than the competition. The [[jogging stroller review]| BOB Revolution Flex and Baby Trend Expedition also have jogging capability with both winning awards in our jogging stroller review]].

The BOB Revolution Flex (left) and the Baby Trend Expedition (right) are the only two strollers in this review that are listed as having jogging capabilities.
The BOB Revolution Flex (left) and the Baby Trend Expedition (right) are the only two strollers in this review that are listed as having jogging capabilities.

The BOB Revolution Flex, Mountain Buggy Swift, and the Baby Trend Expedition all provide an impressive combination of easy pushing, smooth ride, and fast effortless turns. Well-fitting quality construction made these three more responsive and easier to guide through tight aisles and turns. Bumps in the sidewalk were handled with ease by the larger air-filled tires with minimal impact passed on to the baby. The BOB Revolution Flex was noticeably better than both the Baby Trend Expedition and the Mountain Buggy Swift thanks to large wheels and very effective shocks.

While the Baby Jogger brand has the word "Jogger" in the name, most of the products they make are not intended for use while jogging. This is true of all three Baby Jogger strollers in this review. Parents should not attempt to jog with these strollers as they do not have the design features that make jogging safely possible.

The City Mini Single has an impressive maneuverability score for a double wheeled front stroller with plastic wheels.
The City Mini Single has an impressive maneuverability score for a double wheeled front stroller with plastic wheels.

It is worth noting that most of the high scorers performed well on both paved and unpaved surfaces. On pavement, their large wheels made for very easy pushing, single-handed turning, and they excelled in smaller spaces. When we went over grass or gravel in the park their advantages were even more pronounced. Smaller wheel products with solid tires got bogged down off the pavement and on rough surfaces, often to relatively unworkable levels. They also transmit bumps and jarring shocks more directly to the baby because the plastic wheels do not absorb the energy or they lacked suspension. The 3-wheelers with larger rubber tires took these off-road surfaces in stride. If your strolling often involves grass, gravel, or dirt, then maneuverability should be a key factor in your decision-making process. The Baby Jogger City Mini GT is a little bit of an anomaly in this metric. It performed well in our tests but has smaller wheels than the other top options. The smaller front wheel design makes it not as good at traversing rougher terrain as the larger wheel products, but still far superior to the competitors that have plastic wheels, dual front wheel designs, and no suspension. Baby Jogger advertises the GT as an all-terrain option. While we don't feel it is a good choice for regular off-road outings, our tests do indicate it manages uneven surfaces better than the other small wheeled competition.

The plastic wheels on the Chicco Bravo LE are partly to blame for the difficulty we had pushing it.
The plastic wheels on the Chicco Bravo LE are partly to blame for the difficulty we had pushing it.

The worst performers in our maneuverability tests were the 4moms Origami and the Chicco Bravo LE. These options use foam filled plastic wheels under 7" in diameter on the front and less than 8" in diameter in the back. They both have a 4 wheel design, with the 4moms design oddly placing the front wheels far out in front of the frame where they caught on every obstacle in our test course. We found turning these through our obstacle course was harder, and travel over bumpy and/or non-paved surfaces frustrating, or impossible. In addition, the 4moms product felt "loose" when turning, meaning there was flex in the frame when we pushed and turned (possibly a byproduct of the self-folding design); this made it less responsive and required more effort to turn effectively.

The BOB Revolution Flex is a nice quality choice that is put together well even if it lacks the sleek styling of many modern day full-size strollers. This BOB earned the highest score for maneuverability  easily moving over almost any surface.
The BOB Revolution Flex is a nice quality choice that is put together well even if it lacks the sleek styling of many modern day full-size strollers. This BOB earned the highest score for maneuverability, easily moving over almost any surface.

Quality


Many parents believe that quality is directly related to price, and while this assumption isn't entirely wrong, we found that many of the mid-range products offer quality on par, or better than, the most expensive options in the group. This is good news for parents hoping to find a high-performing quality product without breaking the bank.


The best options for quality are the BOB Revolution Flex (with a price of $500) and the UPPAbaby Vista ($799) each with an 8 of 10. Both options combine quality components, made of high-end materials, with a fit and finish that stands apart from the crowd with a relatively wide price gap between the two. In general, products scored higher in this metric if they offered comfortable and durable fabric, pneumatic or foam filled rubber tires, and sleek frames with smooth finishes. The lowest scoring products in the group earned 4s; these were the 4moms, the Baby Trend Expedition and the Graco Aire 3. These products show the wide range of prices for similar quality products with a range from $120 to $850. Most of these strollers share plastic wheels, stationary handlebars, and have a lot of flex in the frames with multiple connection joints. The Best Value winner, Baby Jogger City Mini earned a 6, which is above average with a budget-friendly price under $280.

The Select has the highest score for safety in our tests.
The Select has the highest score for safety in our tests.

Safety


Studies published by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), who both analyze US hospital injury databases, identify falling injuries as the most common safety issue with strolling representing more than half of the 46,200 strolling-related injuries between 2008-2011. Tip-over related injuries were the second most common. Experts conclude that use of a restraining harness would have prevented many of these injuries.


To score safety, we examined basic safety features such as harness systems and parking brakes. The top scoring product for safety is the Baby Jogger City Select with an 8 of 10. Seven other products came in second place with 7s, and including award winners UPPAbaby Vista and Britax B-Agile 3. These options all scored well in our safety tests.

One of 30 different stroller lab tests  our sideways tip-over angle test shown above gives us a measure of which strollers are more tippy than others
One of 30 different stroller lab tests, our sideways tip-over angle test shown above gives us a measure of which strollers are more tippy than others

The lowest scoring products in our safety ratings were the Baby Jogger City Mini GT that earned a 3 of 10 score. This product failed in one test that gave us pause and great concern over its overall safety (see below).

We found the Baby Jogger City Mini GT scored poorly in one very specific safety area, that of backward tip-over risk

The GT has a significant safety concern; when the seat back is fully reclined it has a tendency to fall backwards if baby moves too high up the seat back.
The GT has a significant safety concern; when the seat back is fully reclined it has a tendency to fall backwards if baby moves too high up the seat back.
  • In our back tip test the Baby Jogger City Mini GT performed fairly well requiring an above average amount of weight of around 27 pounds on the handle before it tipped back with a 20 lb. test baby in the harness. Again we would not advise hanging a diaper bag or groceries from the handle, so this shouldn't be a concern at all if you use the product as advised. However, there is a serious back-tip issue we observed when the GT seat was fully reclined, as it might be for a sleeping infant or toddler. If an active infant, toddler or child managed to work their way up to the rear of the reclined seat, we found the product could back-tip quickly, dangerously exposing baby's head to a fall injury. Unlike most competing products, the GT reclines nearly flat making it possible for an unharnessed baby to work their way to the back of the reclined seat. Normally a flat recline is a nice feature, one that allows safer sleeping and can work much like a bassinet. But in the case of the GT, the rear of the reclined seat is cantilevered well behind the rear wheel axle which creates a tip-over risk if baby moves to the top end of the seat. When we placed a 10 lb. weight in the rear of the fully reclined seat, the GT would repeatedly tip backward. No other product in our test could be back-tipped as easily. In our opinion, using the GT with the fully reclined seat without carefully harnessing the baby to prevent them from getting to the rear of the seat, is too dangerous. Perhaps if the seat back were shorter, or the recline angle not as flat, this Baby Jogger would have scored more on par with its siblings in this review.

The Britax B-Agile 3 is one of the smallest strollers in the review and is the lightest option we tested. This makes it a good choice for parents with smaller vehicles or limited storage space.
The Britax B-Agile 3 is one of the smallest strollers in the review and is the lightest option we tested. This makes it a good choice for parents with smaller vehicles or limited storage space.

Weight and Folded Size


To test weight and folded size we performed our own measurements. This proved important as we discovered that some manufacturers provided weights or measurements that excluded components such as wheels or detachable seats. Our measurements all include wheels and seats. We did not include accessory items like bassinets or rain covers which only some products include.

The best scoring products for weight and folded size, scoring 8 of 10, are the Britax B-Agile 3 and the Baby Jogger City Mini. Both strollers weigh about 17.5 pounds and are closer to 6,500 cubic inches.


The worst scoring products for weight and folded size are the 4mom Origami and the Quinny Buzz Xtra. The 4moms Origami is the heaviest at 34 pounds, while the largest is the Quinny Buzz at 17,160 cubic inches. The average for the group is closer to 11,500 cubic inches and 24 pounds, with the BOB Revolution Flex and UPPAbaby Cruz coming in closer to these values.

The Cruz offers a few different car seat adapters  we tested the frame for the Chicco Keyfit 30.
The UPPAbaby Mesa is easy to attach to the UPPAbaby Cruz and it feels stable once installed. This combination could be ideal for parents looking for a travel system or who need a car seat that can be installed easily without the base.

Car Seat Compatibility


The photos above show the UPPAbaby Cruz coupled with the Chicco Keyfit 30 (left) and the UPPAbaby Mesa (right).

Most of the products we tested are compatible with different infant car seats and some are light enough to work as a possible stand in for a car seat frame product. A few of the products are really restricted in the seats you can use or don't accept infant seats. Others strollers have a lot of flexibility in brands and models that will work, including the Chicco Keyfit 30, Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35, and the UPPAbaby Mesa, which all one awards in our infant car seat review.

If your plan is to use a stroller as a travel system in conjunction with an infant car seat carrier, then we encourage you to choose a car seat first and then find the best strolling product to go with it. We also think most parents should first purchase a car seat frame product for the first 6-9 months because they are easier to use, lighter, cheaper, and can give parents a better idea of how they will be using the next strolling product. However, all that aside when you are ready to choose your main strolling product, the compatible infant seats are kind of a big deal if you plan to use the two together.

The Britax adapters are easy to install and use.
The car seat adapter frame for the B-Agile 3 clicks into the Britax adapters and the car seats click onto the frame.
The photos above show two car seat connectors types, the snap-in connectors (left) and the frame "click on" connectors (left).

We tested the seats with the compatible car seats we had in the lab and ordered an adapter for the Chicco Keyfit 30 if one was available. We used the Chicco because it was compatible with the most products in the review, and it is an award-winning seat with a reasonable price tag. For the most part, the products worked best combined with the same brand seat, i.e. the UPPAbaby Vista and UPPAbaby Cruz with the UPPAbaby Mesa. However, many of them worked equally well with the Chicco, and a few even seemed more stable or easier to install.

The BOB Revolution uses a frame for car seat attachment. The car seat clicks on to the frame and the red side straps attach to the car seat in a 2 step installation procedure. We prefer 1 step click in connections.
The BOB Revolution uses a frame for car seat attachment. The car seat clicks on to the frame and the red side straps attach to the car seat in a 2 step installation procedure. We prefer 1 step click in connections.

Some seats connected using a click in method, while others required click and strap in steps. On the whole, we prefer the click only variety because they are easier, more foolproof, and sometimes feel more stable. That being said the strap isn't necessarily more difficult, it is just another step in the process and we worry parents will fail to follow through with a second step, which could lead to potential safety issues. If you choose a product that has a strap, like the BOB Revolution Flex, we encourage you to always use the straps. Pairing your infant seat of choice with the best strolling option possible is the goal of combining the two reviews to create a travel system that will work best for you.

We tested a variety of stroller models and brands in this full-size stroller review. This photo includes the strollers we purchased during our review process.
We tested a variety of stroller models and brands in this full-size stroller review. This photo includes the strollers we purchased during our review process.

Conclusion


Is there one right choice for everyone? We don't think so. Your needs will vary from others due to your strolling habits, travel needs, and budget. In this review, our goal is to share relative differences we saw between top competing products so that you can make the most informed decision for you and your baby.

We hope that between our awards and ratings we can help you narrow down the field to a few top contenders. We strive to provide enough detail to help make it significantly simpler for you to find the exact right product for your family's budget and needs. If you still aren't sure what item is best for you, and feel none of the top performers offer exactly what you are looking for, please read our Buying Advice for further guidance on what to consider and how to narrow your options, and review our comparison chart where you will be able to narrow the field based on what features and performance metrics mean the most to you.

Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz
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