Stroller brand review: Chicco Chicco Viaro travel system

Chicco’s Viaro stroller system is a good deal since it includes our top-rated infant car seat (the KeyFit) which alone runs $200.

Stroller brand review: Chicco

Stroller brand review: Chicco. Chicco (pronounced KEY-ko) has a 50-year history as one of Europe’s leading juvenile products makers. Along with Peg Perego, Chicco is one of Europe’s biggest baby gear brands. One difference between the two: Chicco strollers are made in China; Peg strollers are made in Italy.

Chicco’s success with its KeyFit infant car seat has translated into more fans for its matching strollers.

The models. Chicco has stroller models sold in five broad categories: lightweight, full-size, jogging, double and frame.

At the entry-price point of Chicco’s stroller line is their lightweight models: the Liteway, Echo and Capri (C6).

The Liteway ($99.99, 17 lbs.) features two handles, rear wheel suspension, padded five-point harness, cup holder and a full recline. We liked the boot that tucks away when not in use. Over time, Chicco dropped the price and simplified the design a bit. Unfortunately, the Lightway still isn’t car seat compatible.

Chicco has added a new lightweight stroller to the line up: the Mini Bravo. This $149.99 stroller features a one-hand quick fold and larger basket plus parent tray. A second version, the Mini Bravo Plus, holds an infant car seat and adds an extended canopy for Check on Amazon. The Mini Bravo weighs in at 18 lbs. for the base model while the Mini Bravo Plus is 19.6 lbs.

Next is the Echo Twin Stroller ($137.49), which features a four position reclining seat and adjustable leg rest. The Echo is similar to the Liteway except the Echo has double wheels up front, while the Liteway has single wheels. In our opinion, the double wheels make a stroller easier to steer.

The entry-level Capri (also known as the C6; $64, 11 lbs.) features a two-position seat recline, five-point harness and basic canopy. Stroller brand review: Chicco

Stroller brand review: Chicco Chicco Capri stroller

The Capri is both lightweight and light on your wallet at $77.

Let’s talk Chicco’s full-size strollers. The flagship model here is the Urban 6-in-1 Modular Stroller (Check on Amazon), a modular stroller with telescoping handle, aluminum frame, standing fold, large basket, quick release EVA tires, included car seat adapter for the KeyFit and a reversible seat. This 24.1 lb. stroller also includes a clever seat that converts to a carry cot. The Urban is clearly aimed at the UPPAbaby Vista and is priced aggressively ($200+ cheaper than the Vista).

Stroller brand review: Chicco Chicco Urban 6-in1 Modular Stroller

The Urban is Chicco’s answer to the Bugaboo.

As we move up in price, we come to Chicco’s full-size strollers, anchored by the Cortina. It is sold as part of a travel system (Check on Amazon, paired with Chicco’s highly rated KeyFit infant seat). The Cortina features a more traditional design with height-adjustable handles and decent size basket. We thought it was well designed—we liked the one-hand fold and fully reclining seat. A twin version, the Cortina Together, p$299.99riced at

The Chicco Bravo ($229.99 stand-alone, $379.99 travel system, 22.7 lbs.) features a self-standing, quick fold. With a seat that pops off, the frame then can carry the Chicco infant seat. It is similar to the Baby Jogger City Mini and Britax B-Lively, but has four wheels instead of three. The Bravo LE has upgraded fabrics for $249.99 and the Bravo Air has a Breathable 3D AirMesh backrest for $229.99. Stroller brand review: Chicco

Stroller brand review: Chicco Chicco Bravo Trio stroller

The Bravo’s stroller seat removes easily to accommodate a Key Fit car seat.

A luxury version of the Bravo, the Bravo Primo, adds Italian fabrics, a folding child tray, parent tray with zippered compartment, a reversible knit and mesh seat insert and treaded rubber tires. All this luxury will set you back $349.99.

The Bravo also comes in a double version (BravoFor2, $264.38)—it provides a seat for a younger child up front and a padded jump seat for an older toddler to sit or stand in back. The BravoFor2 also can hold an infant car seat.

Rounding out the Chicco line is a stroller frame, dubbed the KeyFit Caddy ($99.99, 11 lbs.). As you might guess, it fits a Chicco KeyFit infant car seat (which pops in with a click) and has a big storage basket plus a height adjustable handle. The frame only fits Chicco infant seats, however. The Shuttle is an upgrade of the Caddy with  a one-hand fold and bigger basket for $119.99. Same basic function as the Caddy—it will hold an Chicco KeyFit or Fit2 infant car seat.

The Viaro is Chicco’s lightest travel system with a stroller that weighs in at 19.9 lbs. The travel system with the Key Fit 30 car seat runs $349.99, while the stroller itself retails for $199.99. Besides the light weight, the Viaro has a one-hand fold similar to the Baby Jogger Citi Mini, front wheel suspension, trays with cupholders for both parents and baby, toe-tap brake locks and dual access basket.

Fans of the Viaro like the smooth ride and ease of assembly but critics say the stroller is too bulky; the partial seat recline also comes in for its share of criticism from parents who say it doesn’t easily accommodate napping toddlers. Stroller brand review: Chicco

Our view. We like Chicco’s strollers, which get good marks for quality and durability from our readers.

Our particular favorites are the Viaro and Bravo, which hit the right notes in terms of features and value. Bulk and weight are the main drawbacks with the Chicco Urban, which otherwise earns cheers for its multi-function feature that can morph into six different modes.

But the Urban can’t fold with the seat attached—you have to remove the seat first. Even when folded, the Urban will take up a large amount of trunk space. So it’s a mixed bag for the Urban: good value, but competitors like UPPA, Baby Jogger City Select and Britax B-Ready outshine the Urban on usability. FYI: The Urban LE changes that equation a bit—it CAN fold with the seat attached.

The only bummer in Chicco’s line-up is their all-terrain option, the Active3/Tre. These models are disappointing compared to similar models by Thule, BOB and even Graco.

Overall, we think Chicco is a good brand and the prices are a decent value. Baby Bargains Resale Rank: Good. Rating: B+ Stroller brand review: Chicco