More pluses than just one!
13 July 2011
I had the honour of being the very first reviewer (in the world!!) to get my hands on the new Mountain Buggy +one
and take it for a spin. If you’re not jealous at the thought alone, read on, the +one is the buggy you want to get up close and personal with if you have (or are planning on having) more than one.
The +one is the new inline buggy from Mountain Buggy. In fact, it’s the first inline from Mountain Buggy. It’s built on the Mountain Buggy platform, which we all know and love, particularly in New Zealand where we expect so much from our buggies. As a single buggy, it looks like a standard Mountain Buggy (think Urban Jungle). Extend out the back section (loosen off the straps and unzip), and you have room for a second little one, pop in the second seat and it’s perfect for another toddler or preschooler sitting slightly higher than the front seat, or don’t fit the back seat and you can pop a newborn down in the ideal position for a nice little nap in the supplied cocoon. If you’re wondering how the front seat is supported, there’s a bar that quickly and easily fits in behind, keeping it upright when you’ve got a second child in the back (read: no risk of the front child accidentally pushing or falling back onto the child in the rear seat).
Now, to give you an idea on ease of use, with no instructions, I had the +one out of its box, up, wheels on, second seat fitted and ready and raring to go in less than 5 minutes. No arguing the intuitive design, that’s for sure.
I have two toddlers - one tall and skinny, the other a typical well built little boy. However, I decided to start my roadtest with my 22 month old in the front, and the cocoon in the back – my thoughts being that in an ideal world, I would have had the luxury of a buggy like this at the time of the birth of my second child. This is actually a lovely set up – the back ‘seat’ where the baby would be in the cocoon is lovely and sheltered, and with the little one being in a rear facing cocoon, they’d not only be snugly and warm, they’d also have the ideal view of the world – facing back towards their parent, with the canopy easy adjusted so they could be looking up at mum or dad, or with it over so that they can’t see a thing (sometimes the only way you want them so they get the idea to go to sleep!). And of course, the toddler in this situation has their ideal view of the world too – facing forward and out, taking in all that the world around them has to offer.
To actually get out and about, I of course had to put the second seat in, and a toddler in the back. There were a few ‘discussions’ about who should sit where, and they swapped around a few times. Both were more than happy in the ‘back’ seat, still having a relatively decent view of the world, and I personally preferred this set up to the inline we are used to seeing with one sitting considerably lower and to the rear of the other.
I’m not particularly tall, and have never had to worry about stride length, but I know plenty do with inline buggies, so checking it out, I wouldn’t think anyone would have any problems – it’s really exactly the same as the standard single Mountain Buggy. The canopy is another feature of note – it has zips to extend it further, and can be fitted quite high, to easily and comfortably go over both children.
The +one handled exactly the way you would expect a Mountain Buggy to – with ease, little effort and precision. Down the steps, through tight doorways, up curbs, across grass, bumpy terrain, all no problem. My only wish on the day I took it out is that it hadn’t been so windy and cold that I couldn’t take the little ones down onto the beach, I would have loved to see how it went in the sand (given previous Mountain Buggy experience however, I am guessing I needn’t have any worries here!). I love the one hand steering of the Mountain Buggy, and was surprised with over 25kg of child (total) in the buggy, how easily I still managed to push it up a particularly steep hill.
Over the past 3+ years, I think I have at some stage had my hands on almost every popular buggy in the market. I’ve liked different bits and pieces about all of them, and to be honest, most of the popular buggies in New Zealand are popular for good reason. But never have I been as impressed by any as I was the +one. Its versatility, manoeuvrability and ingenious design put it well above the rest. So much so, I will officially be trading up without question. August, I look forward to your arrival, and with it, my new toy!
Find out more about the Mountain Buggy +one have a look at the Mountain Buggy website here
Note, the photos below are of my little ones in the buggy. Strictly copyright babybites.co.nz – please don’t publish these photos elsewhere. I have the shorter of my two in the back, but as you can see, Lucas still has a great view. You can also see down into the footwell of the buggy where the feet of the child in the rear seat go.