Bebecar One&Two – First UK Exclusive Review!
We are absolutely delighted to have been given the opportunity to do the exclusive first UK review of the Bebecar One&Two. To be honest, we had not heard much about the One&Two since it was first announced, so we were in for a few surprises!
The first surprise came when we were told to expect one box! Just one?!! There are not many tandem pushchairs that come in one box, let alone a tandem which appeared to have large comfortable seat units. But yes, just one Bebecar box arrived! Admittedly it was a very large box, but everything we needed was inside.
Our next surprise was to lift out a gleaming, shiny, beautiful chrome chassis. The photos of the Bebecar One&Two that we had previously seen were of a black chassis. But in front of me was an object of shining beauty. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by how gorgeous it looked.
The One&Two chassis is long, but narrow, flat and slim. The chassis opened very easily – we simply rotated the handlebar to straight (important to do) and then we pulled the handle towards us. The chassis started to open and was stood upright in seconds.
The four wheels emerged next from the box. There were two large and two small wheels. These have shiny chrome detailing too and they clicked easily into place. There is no need for bulky wheelguards on the One&Two, because the children are sat high up, well away from the wheels
The One&Two seat units are attached onto a platform using two fixing points – one at the front and one at the rear. The One&Two seating platform was another surprise because it was so easy to use. The platform is a slim piece of metal which comes attached to the chassis, and can be folded and stored on or off the chassis. The platform rotates round during the opening sequence of the pushchair, so that it is ready to use. But the platform can be removed fast, or dropped back on quickly. It is possible to remove and add on the platform when folded, as well as when the pushchair is open.
Removing the platform from the chassis means that the Bebecar One&Two can easily be a good single pushchair. It would be no problem in the boot of the car, to simply remove the light platform from the chassis, set it aside and use just one seat, or equally to fix the platform back on to be able to use two seats. This means that one pushchair can be easily used for both one or two children. Great for siblings!
Next out of the box came two very odd looking seat units with bumper bars. They looked kind of alien – as if they had been sucked in by a vacuum machine!! But on closer inspection the seats have a hook on the rear, and by simply turning this hook around, the seats magically puff out and become two good sized comfortable, very well padded seat units. The seats drop very easily onto the fixing points and are incredibly simple to remove – probably the easiest seats to remove that we have tried out – a simple squeeze of the handles and the seats release easily. I did find it tricky at first to find the exact spot to drop the seats back onto the platform but I got good lining them up after a few days!
Finally two hoods and two aprons emerged from the box. The hoods and bumper bars clicked into place into their sockets (both easy to remove again) and the hoods were attached at the rear using two press studs. The aprons are used in newborn mode to finish off the carrycot type environments.
Styling & Fabrics:
The Bebecar One&Two looks very smart with its shiny chrome chassis and the large seat units. In the photos that we had previously seen with the black chassis, the platform looked unusual. However now the One&Two has a chrome chassis, your eye is naturally drawn to look at the shiny chassis and somehow the black platform disappears under the seemingly floating seat units.
It is easy to tell that the One&Two is a top quality product from looking at the seat fabrics and the level of padding in the seat units and calf rests. There are good harness pads which easily unvelcro to adjust the harness. The hoods are completely lined. Even the basket is lined with the main fabric!
Child Comfort & Seats:
The Bebecar One&Two has large comfortable seats for both children. There is no compromise between one having a larger seat than the other as both seat units are identical. The seat units are placed high up on the chassis, which gives both the children a great view out. Both seats come with a removable hood and an easy open, swing away bumper bar. The latter is very useful with an older toddler so that they do not need to be lifted up as high to be seated. The seats are very well padded and the lined hood does seem make a difference to how snug and warm the seat unit is. My 18 month old fell asleep within minutes even on a bitterly cold day.
There are 3 positions of seat recline in almost every mode, whether tandem or single, and in either direction. We only found one tandem seating position ie the seats back to back, where we were unable to fully lie flat both seats, but even in that position, one seat could lie flat and the other had a partial recline. We did however find that our tall 3 year old toddler was not comfortable laid down. Many toddlers at her age do still nap, and the calf support was insufficient to support her legs. The baby was very comfortable though.
The Bebecar One&Two has an adjustable suspension system to give a softer ride for newborn babies. Once the children reach 8kgs, the suspension button can be depressed to give a better ride for heavier children.
The Bebecar One&Two has enormous hoods. They are beautifully made and lined and offer good insulation for the seated child. The hoods can be drawn back, partially opened or fully opened. When the hood is fully open, there is a lock which straightens the hoods out and makes them firm and looking smart. There are no peekaboo windows. The hoods fasten on at the rear with press studs but we did find that they did come undone fairly easily.
The harnesses on the Bebecar One&Two are a good length and were easily adjusted. We did however find the buckle a little tricky to do – it is a jigsaw piece type where two parts have to be fitted together before inserting the two parts into the buckle. With wriggly children, I do find these difficult to do. I prefer a buckle where one side can be quickly inserted whilst you adjust the harness to fit the other side in.
The second was that there are no harness height holes – just the one. This should not have really caused an issue as the straps should ideally go up and over a taller child’s shoulders, but in reality they slipped down around the sides of my daughter’s shoulders and I would not say they felt as safe as they could be – especially when my daughter was so far in front of me and I was unable to see her. I can imagine that for a more lively child, they would easily escape the harness.
There is no disputing the Bebecar One&Two is long, but for that you get good sized seat units with plenty of leg room and the option of having lie flat seats in three configurations. The length of the One&Two is really dependent on which position the seats are in but also whether either seat is reclined. For example the longest mode is probably with both seats facing each other and fully reclined. The shortest mode is probably both seats facing each other but fully upright.
The handlebar position also makes a difference to the length. The handle is probably unique amongst pushchairs because it has both a rotating handlebar and an extending handlebar in one!! The rotating handle moves into both vertically upright and vertically down positions, with many stops in between. The rotating handle is simple to use – simply press in the two buttons on the outside of the handlebar and rotate.
The handlebar also extends towards the parent. The extending handle exists to allow clearance for the hands of the adult who is pushing when the rear seat is forward facing. The extending handle does not slide out easily. Part of that is the need to hold in a button on each side, whilst pulling the handle quite hard – which in reality is a 3 handed process! We found that we had to jiggle one side a small amount, then do the other side a small amount, before repeating this process until the handle was extended. There are 3 extension positions – closed, a middle stop and fully extended. To be honest, unless the rear seat is forward facing there is no need to extend the handle, because there is enough room to comfortably push and walk when the rear seat is parent facing.
The handlebar, using both the rotating and extending features, has a huge range – we estimate that the lowest setting is 75.5cms and the highest fully extended setting is 115.5cms. Having a pushchair handle with such flexibility to allow for say a long stride, or a person of shorter stature is brilliant.
The handlebar itself is a very comfortable, firm rubber with just enough texture for a grip, but not too much to be uncomfortable. This should hopefully mean that the handlebar is hard wearing which is useful because the chassis will freestand on the handlebar for storage.
Carrycots & Car Seats:
There is no need for a carrycot for the Bebecar One&Two because both seat units convert into lie flat “carrycot” type environments. It is very simple to do as one of our photosets shows. Simply undo the footrest fabric, velcro the sides together, push the bumper bar through to give it shape, and add on the apron on top. These make very cosy environments for a newborn baby and would offer good shelter whether from winter winds or from the sun in summer.
However there is also the option to add on one carrycot or two car seat units. Unfortunately, two carrycots do not fit onto the chassis.
One of the core features of the Bebecar One&Two is that the pushchair can be either a tandem or a single pushchair. This gives flexibility especially to the parents of siblings who may sometimes only need a single pushchair, or if their toddler wants to walk. It means that one pushchair would do both jobs.
The pushchair works in exactly the same way as the tandem does but with just one seat on. The One&Two does look very good as a single. However the seat unit does feel a long way from you! But it is a small compromise for a pushchair that has a dual function for one or two children.
The Bebecar One&Two at first glance appears to have a small basket. But it was like a tardis and we managed to get lots of shopping in the basket underneath – we got two wire shopping baskets full in! I think the length of the One&Two makes the basket look smaller than it actually is. The basket was a good shape with high sides so that our shopping easily stayed in ie we didn’t worry about anything falling out. The basket is also easily accessible. We were able to push whole bags of shopping into the basket from several angles through the chassis. We like the way the basket is lined in the same fabric as the seat units. It is a nice luxurious touch.
The Bebecar One&Two is a long pushchair which does affect handling. The chassis itself feels relatively light and is easy to lift. The two seat units together weigh almost as much as the chassis. So whilst the One&Two is not the heaviest pushchair to push that we have tested, it is also not the lightest either. But the weight and impact on pushability is the compromise to have the larger seat units, and greater child comfort.
I prefer to push one handed whenever possible and it was certainly possible to push the One&Two one handed even with over 28kgs of child weight and shopping on board – which is no mean feat for a tandem. It is important to bear in mind that we do have two older children as testers (aged 3.4 years old and 18 months). However relative to other tandems that we have pushed, the One&Two did well.
We found that the One&Two had good manoeuvrability on the spot so that even though the pushchair is long, we did not need more than the length of the pushchair to turn in. This was useful in small shops.
However, we did notice that the chassis does flex from side to side as we pushed. We found this happened in both tandem and single modes. The flexibility in the chassis did become an issue when trying to do a sharp narrow turn eg into a shop doorway or gateway because we couldn’t get good leverage to turn around a corner and into a small doorway. However this was not a problem around supermarket aisles and I managed to carry a shopping basket and push the One&Two one handed.
It was not easy to get the One&Two up a kerb or small step. We have mainly dropped kerbs locally, but I did struggle to get over door lintels into some of our older shops.
The brake foot pedal is situated at the right hand side of the rear of the chassis. It does just push on and off, however it does need a firm push to engage. Due to the long handlebar (even unextended) I found it quite hard to engage the brake from the rear. I found it easier to walk around the side to press the brake on and off.
The Bebecar One&Two has two small front wheels and two larger hard rear wheels. They are nicely made and are finished with chrome detailing. The wheels popped on and off very easily for storage. The front wheels however feel too small for a tandem pushchair and we feel that the One&Two would benefit from some larger front wheels. I do feel that the wheels on the One&Two do very much make this pushchair an urban use one. However it has coped with driving across the park and our gravel drive which is probably as much ‘off road’ as many parents wish to do with a pushchair.
The Bebecar One&Two chassis folds really easily. However both seat units need to be removed before folding but this is very simple to do – simply squeeze the handles and they come off very easily. The seat units sit up nicely on the ground whilst you fold the pushchair, which means that the fabrics do not get dirty.
We found that the chassis was easier to fold if the brake is applied before folding. The chassis folds to a very long but flat package. The converter bar folds with the chassis, or can be removed and stored separately. As a parent to siblings, I liked having the option whether to use the One&Two as a single or double pushchair. It was easy to pop the converter on and off from the main chassis in the boot of the car, and then simply add one seat or two.
The seat units do fold flatter for storage or transportation. To do so, the hood needs removing – very simple to pop off – but the bumper bar can be left in situ. The recline needs to be pulled to a laid flat position. The seat lock is underneath the seat unit and simply needs unhooking. The seat then needs pushing upwards and the seat starts to fold inwards. The lock needs hooking back on once the seat is small enough. This sounds a lot, but it literally takes seconds to do.
We did find that it is possible to fit the seats back onto the chassis once folded and it may be a neat way to store the seat units if there is room.
The Bebecar One&Two sits at the luxury end of the pushchair market and it is clear to see why. The chassis and seats all exude quality and attention to detail. We loved the versatility of this pushchair whether it was the different seating modes; the options to add on a carrycot or car seat; or the option to use the pushchair as a single, or as a double. We did find the side to side movement of the chassis an issue in both single and tandem mode, as was lifting the pushchair over any obstacle. But as a parent, I loved seeing my baby fast asleep, laid flat, in front of me, whilst my toddler could see the world; or else seeing the two children interacting with each other, and giggling whilst face to face. This is what the One&Two offers that few other tandems do.
With many thanks to all at Bebecar, and Nick at Practical Media Services, for giving us the opportunity to review the One&Two.
Other Bébécar One&Two Reviews: