Peg-Perego Pliko Mini Stroller review

Peg-Perego Pliko Mini Stroller

Web: perego.com

Peg Perego is the Italian stroller maker that was among the first European brands to land in North America, way back in the 1980’s. The company traces its roots back to 1949 when its founder Giuseppe Perego created a carriage for his infant son.

Unlike most other European brands who long ago abandoned production on the Continent in search of lower labor costs in Asia, Peg Perego still makes all its strollers in Italy. (Okay, there was a brief time when Perego flirted with Chinese imports with one model—the Aria—but that didn’t go well and the company returned back to an all-Italian line).

That all-Italian mantra for Peg has been both a blessing and curse. On the upside, the com­pany’s fabrics are considered among the most fashionable (although, admittedly, other companies have since closed the fashion gap). Peg’s reputation for quality is also excellent. In an era where parents are concerned about Chinese imports and their safety, recalls on Perego strollers are rare.

But . . . the made-in-Europe label has its price—in the last few years, Peg’s strollers have jumped in price to compensate for high labor costs. Many Peg models cost 20% to 30% more than competitor’s similar models made in China.

This brand has had its ups and downs in the past decade. Peg missed out on the all-terrain craze, as well as the boom in tri-wheel strollers. You’d think the brand would be a strong player in the multi-function stroller market, first pioneered by Bugaboo and then perfected by UPPAbaby, Britax and others. But they missed that one too.

Peg also lost a bit of its cache after unloading its overstock strollers in closeout discounters like Marshall’s.

So can Peg get its mojo back? Let’s look at their current line up.

The models. Perego has a lengthy list of strollers that includes single models, doubles and what they dub “systems,” modular models that include an infant car seat. Below is the current model line-up. We’ll break this down into single, double and sys­tems.

Single strollers. Peg’s current line-up includes seven single strollers: the Switch Four, Pliko Mini, Book, Book Plus, Book Pop-Up, Booklet and Book Cross. New for 2017 is the Team.

The Switch Four ( $350-$400, 23.8 lbs.) has a 150 degree reclining seat, reversible seat, foot muff and rain shield.

The Pliko Mini ($224-$250, 14 lbs.) is Peg’s lightest weight stroller. The Mini features a three-position reclining seat, cup holder, adjustable footrest and height adjustable handle.

Peg Perego Book stroller

Peg Perego Book stroller

The cornerstone of Peg’s full size strollers is the Book ($280-$350, 22.6 lbs.), which gets its name from its fold: yes, it folds up like a book (and stands when folded). The Book features wider front wheels with suspension and a wider seat (it can also hold a car seat). Peg Perego recently tweaked the Book basket to make it larger and more accessible. Other features include a height adjustable handle bar, fully reclining seat, ball bearing wheels for a smooth glide and one-hand fold.

The Book Plus ($500, 24.4 lbs) adds a reversible seat and can be folded with or without the seat. The Book Plus comes with a boot and rain shield. You can snap in a Perego infant car seat right to the chassis, which can be bought separately for $270 (you can later add the stroller seat).

The newest versions of the Book are the Book Pop-Up and Booklet. The Book Pop-Up  ($760, 25.6 lbs.) is similar to the Book, but adds a seat and bassinet that both pop-up when opened. You can fold the Book Pop-Up with the seat facing either direction and it takes a Peg infant seat without an adapter. FYI: The Book Pop-Up will be discontinued later in 2017 to make way for Team stroller (see below).

Peg Perego Booklet stroller

Peg Perego Booklet stroller

The less expensive Booklet ($350, 19 lbs.) features the same Book fold, but the seat doesn’t reverse and it is three pounds lighter than the base Book model. The Booklet has an extended canopy and full recline—it takes the Peg 4.35 infant car seat with no additional adapter.

The Book Cross ($500, 22 lbs.) is a three-wheel version of the Book with a hand parking brake, all wheel suspension, a knob near the height adjustable handle that lets you change from swivel to fixed wheel, adjustable foot rest. The one-hand standing fold is nice, but the foam handle bar hits the ground, which is sure to either get grimy or damaged. Like the Booklet, the Book Cross can take the Peg infant seat with no additional adapter.

Peg is releasing a new lightweight stroller in August 2018 called the TAK. Weighing in at 11.5 lbs. is comes with a full recline, extendible leg rest and a self-standing center trigger z-fold. It will sell for $200 and come in three colors.

Also coming in summer is a new modular stroller, the YPSI. The toddler seat is removable and reversible and the frame will accept a bassinet ($300) and all Peg infant car seats (sold separately). Other features include a narrower, lighter weight frame (16.1 lbs.); adjustable handle; vegan leather trim; lockable front wheels; large basket; newborn insert; and height adjustable hood. The toddler seat holds up to 55 lbs. The cost: $550.

Peg Perego’s Team ($900, 32.1 lbs) is their first multi-function stroller that converts from a single to double. The Team includes a bassinet that can fold with the stroller, which is a plus. The Team stroller seat (included) is reversible and features an extended canopy with sun visor. To morph the Team into a double stroller, you’ll need an extra $100 adapter that can hold the bassinet plus a seat, a good configuration for an older child and newborn.

Here’s a look both the single and double configuration of the Team:

peg team double config

New for 2018, Peg Perego is introducing a new line called Agio, for sale only in bricks and mortar independent baby stores. In the stroller category, they are debuting the Agio Z4 and Z3 strollers.

The Z4 is a full size stroller with four wheels (hence the name). It comes with an extendable canopy, leatherette accents, reversible seat and two-step standing fold. The stroller comes with a boot and there is an optional bassinet accessory. Car seat adapters are available for the Nido, Maxi Cosi, Nuna and Cybex car seats. Cost: $550. Woah! That’s pricey for a stroller that doesn’t convert to a double.

The Z3 is pitched as an all-terrain version of the Z4 with three wheels and wide treads with suspension for a smoother ride. The seat is not reversible but the handle is height adjustable. Another difference: the Z3 doesn’t include a boot. Price $400.

The Agio Z series strollers are not yet available, so we’ll update our review as we get more real world feedback.

Double strollers. 2016 is the year of the double stroller for this brand, as Peg introduces three new models here.

Peg Perego Book for Two stroller

Peg Perego Book for Two stroller

The Book For Two ($650, 31.2 lbs.) features the Book’s easy fold, standing fold and a 29.14″ width, which Peg claims is the narrowest double on the market (hello, New Yorkers). Also unique: the Book for Two can hold TWO Peg infant car seats. Unfortunately, the adapters are sold separately ($40 each) and the adapters must be removed to fold the stroller.

The Pliko Mini Twin ($300-$360, 24.7 lbs.) is a simpler/lighter side-by-side with umbrella style handles (the Book for Two has one single handlebar). It has independent adjustable seat reclines and footrests and a standing fold.

The Duette Piroet is Peg’s tandem stroller for $700 that features reversible seats and is compatible with Peg’s infant car seat as well as bassinet accessories. No one will mistake this stroller as lightweight, with a weight of 43.4 lbs.

Our view. Peg Perego’s DNA is making expertly tailored full-size strollers. And bless their hearts, they have made these things no matter how the stroller market has changed over the years. Call them dedicated, crazy or just Italian—Peg Perego is . . . Peg Perego.

The Peg strollers we think are the best are their lightest weight offerings—the Pliko Mini is probably our favorite here, with its compact fold and overall good design. We wish it folded up quicker, with fewer steps, however. The Book and Book Pop Up are also excellent, albeit very pricey.

Fans of Perego like their overall quality, features like a standing fold (in some models), and made-in-Italy fabrics. Critics bristle at the price (the Pliko Mini is $250—for a lightweight umbrella stroller?). Another negative: the storage baskets on many Peregos are small.

Peg’s full-size strollers are a tougher sell, given their weight and price. The Book series strollers are the stars here, with fans liking the reversible seats. They are credible alternatives to the Uppa Baby Vista and Cruz models.

The new Team stroller is classic Peg—beautiful . . . and very late to the market. We previewed the Team at a trade show and can report Peg’s attention to design detail is still intact. The only problem? The weight: the chassis alone on the Team is 24.3 lbs. Add in a stroller seat and you’ve got a 30+ lb stroller. That’s 20% more than competing strollers like the UPPAbaby Vista.

Add in the double adapter (which weighs 9.3 lbs itself) and the weight is tipping over 50 lbs when totally configured (chassis, double adapter, bassinet, stroller = 51.9 lbs). Add in two kids and a diaper bag and you don’t have a stroller—you have a battle tank.

Bottom line: this brand has very good quality—but you’ll pay for it. Baby Bargains Resale Rank: Fair. Rating: B+