For the past couple of weeks, The Bowens have been road-testing a vehicle of a different kind. No, it’s not the latest McLaren or Merc, it’s some new wheels for son Henry. Baby Jogger sent out its City Mini GT 10 Anniversary Edition pram and City Go Baby Capsule. Here’s what The Bowens think.
City Mini GT – On the Road
So how does it drive? Pretty good actually. It’s a smooth ride for both parent and baby. The material covering the handle is soft under the hand but offers optimal grip. It’s easy to drive one-handed and the wheels respond quickly to direction changes.
The brake is also in a handy position – located on the right near the handle and is released with an easy squeeze rather than using your foot.
To us, it’s the sports car of prams, it’s highly manoeuvrable, easy to fold, light to lift and capable of tackling tricky terrain. It also fits way better through doors than our current version which now feels like a bull in a china shop.
Out of the Box
The pram arrived in a compact box and was largely assembled. Things such as the wheels and canopy were logically attached, almost removing the need to read a manual but perhaps because Chris had experience in putting together prams, he was ok this time around. There is also a lot of plastic to pull off but that’s to be expected with a new item.
Henry seems to find the pram comfortable. The seat has cushioning built into it. The straps also come with a comfort covering and are quite secure. They are a little more complicated to fit together and if your brain isn’t working at capacity, the two-piece locking mechanism can be frustratingly hard during times of crisis (I’m talking about during those fidgeting, hungry, tired monkey moments.)
One thing different to our current pram, is the canopy. In the City Mini GT 10th Anniversary Edition, it extends a long way. That not only helps keep the sun out of his eye when it’s at a bad angle, but also offers a fair bit of extra darkness when he’s having a pram nap. And when Henry was out and about with his dad in Bathurst and it was raining, the water appeared to just bead away.
Like all good sports cars, it could probably do with more storage space. It says not to hang bags off the handle but it’s hard to get even a small nappy bag in and out quickly from the storage basket underneath the pram. But then again, we do own a pram the size of a Kia Carnival.
But what it does offer, is a one-hand quick fold, locking front swivel wheel, front wheel suspension, the ability to convert into a travel system with the car seat adaptors, multi-position reclining seat, plus a window in the canopy. The whole thing weighs just 9.5 kilograms.
Other positive differences to our current pram, include how much smaller it is when it folds down – meaning more space in the boot, how much lighter it is – meaning less strain on the back, and how quick it is to unfold simply by using one hand.
The Anniversary Edition also claims to be trendier and appeal more to dads with its two-toned knit and cognac accents.
It’ll set you back $799.
City Go Baby Capsule – In The Car
First, what a revelation ISOFIX tether straps are. For a person that regularly swaps cars as a motoring journalist, hot swapping from one new car to another with a traditional belt and tether strap seat is about the most frustrating thing other than listening to the Hokey Pokey on loop to simply get through the trip.
ISOFIX anchor points are now a standard in the car industry but we don’t have them in our family car – a 2010 Toyota Camry. The anchor points in today’s modern vehicles allow for the installation of baby car seats and capsules within minutes. So, I really enjoyed installing the City Go Baby Capsule in numerous vehicles with ease, although Australian Standards still require the use of a top tether strap.
It comes with an inbuilt spirit level to indicate when the capsule is angled correctly. And there is a dial to easily adjust the angle.
The City Go Baby Capsule can be lifted from its car base and conveniently snapped onto the City Mini GT.
It’s also one of the few capsules that can accommodate a 12-month-old – but obviously you need to use common sense. Not every baby grows at the same pace or is the same weight at 12 months old. For newborns, it comes with an insert that is easily removed.
Henry finds the capsule quite comfortable. He was a little snug in it because he’s almost 12 months old, but he appears to enjoy his new environment. He liked the headrest and the incline. The straps also have comfort covering. His seal of approval was quickly given by him falling asleep peacefully not long after we took off for the first time with him in the new seat. In fact, if Henry could speak we’re sure he’d award the City Mini GT 10th Anniversary Edition and City GO Capsule the EFTM Credit Rubber Stamp of Approval.
The City GO Baby Capsule retails for $449. For more details click here.