UPPAbaby Cruz Stroller, Denny review

UPPAbaby Cruz

Web: UppaBaby.com

UPPAbaby was launched in 2006 by Bostonians Bob and Lauren Monahan. Bob worked for First Years and Safety 1st in product development before striking out on his own; Lauren provides the PR and design mojo. Obviously, the Monahan’s  have kids, as you can tell from the well-thought-out designs of their strollers.

The models. UPPAbaby has a hit with their flagship model, the multi-function Vista (26.3 lbs.; pictured). Made with an aircraft alloy frame, the Vista stroller system includes a bassinet and stroller seat, telescoping handle and easy fold. We liked all the included extras, such as a rain shield, mesh sunshade and bug cover. Plus the Vista uses rubber-like foam wheels that give a smooth ride, but don’t go flat. Unlike the Bugaboo, you can fold the Vista with the seat attached.

UPPAbaby gave the Vista a complete make-over in 2015. The biggest changes include a simpler one-step fold (like the Cruz, described below). And the Vista will be able to hold two seats—two UPPAbaby Mesa infant seats, two toddler seats, two bassinets, etc. With eight configurations, this is similar to the Baby Jogger Select.

Other improvements include bassinet fabrics that easily zip off for washing, removable wheels, and a new lighter frame (or so they claim: we weighed the 2015 Vista at 29.8 lbs, which is more than the 26.3 lbs for the 2014 Vista).

The Vista retails for $840 (which includes a bassinet and toddler seat); extra seats run $170. 

2015 UPPAbaby Vista

The latest UPPAbaby Vista can hold 2 toddler seats, 2 infant seats or 2 bassinets.

While the Vista is the flagship, UPPA’s most popular strollers are their lightweight G umbrella models. These are anchored by the G-Lite ($160, 8.3 lbs.), a super lightweight umbrella stroller with a standing fold and mesh seat. The G-lite doesn’t recline, so it is best for babies six months and up. FYI: the G-Lite’s mesh seat doesn’t come with seat pad, which is a bummer.

There is also an upgraded version of the G-Lite, dubbed the G-Luxe ($280, 13.4 lbs.). It features a standing fold, bigger wheels, partial (three position) seat recline, removable/washable seat pad and a canopy with expandable sunshade..

New in the past year, UPPA debuted a double version of their G-Luxe stroller, called the G-Link ($500, 25 lbs). It features adjustable footrests and a quick fold from a center strap. The G-Link can hold up to 50 lbs. in each seat, which has an an independent canopy and adjustable footrest. The only bummer: this stroller does not have a one-hand fold . . . but it stands when folded, which is nice.

The final stroller in the UPPA line is the Cruz ($500, 22 lbs.), positioned between the G-Luxe and the Vista in terms of features. It features a reversible seat (but no bassinet) and adjustable height handle. Car seat adapters for the Maxi-Cosi, Graco, Chicco and Peg Perego infant seats are available for $30 to $40. Accessories include a bumper bar ($30), snack tray ($40) and travel bag ($90). Interesting note: the travel bag guarantees against damage by airlines. Just register the bag with Uppa Baby’s TravelSafe Program before you leave on your vacation.

UPPAbaby G-Link

The new G-Link double runs $500.

In the past year. the Cruz got a few minor tweaks: new foam wheels with an air chamber center, a new bumper bar and new larger rear wheels. 

Our view. We like UPPAbaby—parent feedback on most of their strollers has been quite positive.

Readers who like the Vista praise its quality, huge basket and high-riding seat and bassinet. The no-flat foam tires also win raves. The negatives include a basket that is a bit hard to reach with the bassinet attached—and the rear wheelbase (25”) on the Vista is rather wide, making the stroller harder to maneuver in tight aisles or doorways.

Another bummer: the seat doesn’t have a full recline, which irks some users. But . . . the footrest is adjustable (something the Bugaboo lacks) and the fold is much easier and more compact compared to Bugaboo. And to use the second seat, you have to purchase separate adapters ($20 each for the upper or lower adapters). You’d think for $800+, UPPA would throw those in.

Those criticisms aside, folks who have the Vista give it high marks for quality and durability. The company’s customer service is also excellent. If you live in the city and need a durable, multi-function stroller (and can live with the weight/bulk), the Vista is a good choice.

The G-Lite wins similar kudos, with fans citing its super light weight and included cushions. The lack of seat recline in the G-lite is one major negative, but folks with older toddlers say it is fine for them. We picked the G-Lite as our “better” picks on our umbrella stroller web site.

The Cruz is probably our least favorite model in this line-up, as parent feedback is mixed at best.

So, we will recommend UPPAbaby—for urban parents, the Vista or Cruz is a good bet. For those in the suburbs, the G-Lite or G-Luxe are top contenders for best lightweight strollers. Baby Bargains Resale Rank: Good.  Rating: A

* The Uppababy Vista was recently recalled (July 23, 2015), so this model was removed from shelves at that time. We expect stores (including Amazon) to get new Vistas on their shelves soon.