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iCandy Peach Blossom 2012 Review

The new 2012 iCandy Peach Blossom is a brilliant, gorgeous, stylish, easy to push, practical tandem pushchair.  iCandy have transformed what was always my favourite single pushchair, finally into a tandem that REALLY works! The new Blossom kit will make the iCandy Peach a pushchair that will easily grow with your family from one child, to two children, and back to one child again (or more!). It will cope quickly and easily with different seating requirements for the children ie carrycots, car seat or seat units. It also most importantly will be able to easily carry the weight of two toddlers, with superb handling and pushability.

The new iCandy Peach Blossom, that I am currently privileged enough to be now pushing, is the pushchair that I had hoped to had when my baby arrived last year.

However within hours of buying my iCandy Peach Blossom, I realised that the size and recline of the lower seat unit was going to be an issue. So, I promptly ordered a Baby Jogger City Select, and I used my Peach as a single for some months until the City Select arrived. I loved every minute of using the Peach as a single, and to date it has been my favourite single pushchair.

Whilst this is a review of the Peach Blossom, I want to talk a bit about the Baby Jogger City Select because I have compared the two pushchairs side by side in the past, and is the pushchair that I had been using for 9 months before the new Peach Blossom. The City Select is a fantastic pushchair. It has a lot of outstanding features like the large hoods, massive storage basket, handbrake, seating combinations & positions and small fold. I love all of these things. However the one overriding problem with the City Select is the weight distribution. One child is sat directly over the front wheels. This makes the City Select heavy to tip up kerbs, even with a baby in the front. This was never an issue for me as we have dropped kerbs everywhere in our town. However by the time my baby was 9 months old, my toddler was also 9 months older and heavier, I had a new issue: I was struggling to keep the City Select driving a straight line on a very slightly cambered pavement and as a result I was straining my forearm. Therefore, I had started to look around for a replacement double pushchair to walk with locally, when iCandy offered me the opportunity to try out the prototype of the new Peach Blossom. Before I continue, I have say that the City Select still has huge benefits for our family for its tardis like abilities to hold everything you need for a day trip and still have room for shopping, and for its compact size when travelling – it is the only double pushchair that fits under my convertible car roof.

So, given the Baby Jogger City Select in most respects is an excellent pushchair, I have been trying to work out why the iCandy Peach Blossom in my humble opinion is actually better. Bearing in mind that there is no such thing as the perfect tandem pushchair (at present); and there are still compromises with the new Peach Blossom; the two main features that really give the new Peach Blossom the edge for me above the City Select are the styling - the polished chassis, the fabrics, the liners, the feeling that the pushchair is neat and compact; and the handling - which is absolutely and utterly superb with two heavier children in the seat units.

I remember well the first outing to the shops with the new Peach Blossom – I walked up the street, pushing the Peach Blossom one handed, the chassis glinting in the sunlight, and it was simply beautiful to push. Effortless and easy. I could zip easily around tight corners in small shops. I could even reverse without any issue. It was sheer pleasure. And I think that is the essence of the iCandy Peach that I don’t know if I can convey through words. They say you never forget your first love, and for me the Peach was it. I love the feel of the Peach handlebar in my hand – in some ways it is too chunky for my hand – but it is one of the defining features of the Peach and it makes the Peach feel sturdy and gives me confidence in its abilities. However, the new Peach does feel surprisingly long given the changes are just a matter of a few inches – but it is a tandem pushchair with plenty of room for both children!

My children were happy in their comfy seat units with thick liners. My baby had a good view out of the back seat and was contented sat upright. My daughter had plenty of room both width & height wise, and her feet rested comfortably on the footrest. Both were comfortable under their hoods and enjoyed the ride. There is enough room between the seats for the lower child to not kick the upper child from underneath. Best of all, I later swapped the children around so that the baby had the front seat and my toddler was underneath. My 2.5 year old loved stretching her legs the full length of the basket and she now actually prefers being in the lower position.

The changes to the Blossom Kit, which I have documented elsewhere, have brought HUGE positives:

  • The back seat being the same size as the front one, with both seats having the ability to sit upright, with space between the seats is the MASSIVE HUGE positive of the new Blossom Kit. The changes to the seat unit are what will transform the Peach Blossom’s usefulness and longevity.
  • The carrycots will also be the same size which means hopefully the comments about the lower carrycot being small will no longer apply.
  • It is easy now to put the lower car seat in and out without needing to remove the upper seat unit. I have really found this feature useful especially when it has been cold or wet, as I could get the children into the car first, and then dismantle the pushchair – as opposed to removing the toddler, then the seat unit and finally the baby in the car seat.
  • The seat liners can now be removed (without leaving velcro) which allows plenty of room for growth. My 2.8 year old as yet does not need these removing. She has lots of room in the seat unit.
  • The safety harness has been lengthened – especially the crotch strap – and there is plenty of spare harness for my daughter to grow.
  • My daughter has sufficient room under the hood at present. However, should we wish to, the hood also unzips allowing more headroom (although I would like to see a fabric panel to cover the gap that is created). But to be honest, my daughter is very tall for her age (growing out of age 3-4 clothes), and the seat unit is perfect for her.
  • I like the way the seat units now stack neatly, (partly because there is now no lower bumper bar and there is a flexible lower footrest,) which is much better especially in the car boot.
  • I understand the basket has been altered to make access easier - and I have managed to get several bags of groceries in the basket with both children on board, and there is room around the back for drink bottles and my purse / small handbag to be tucked in.

However, the Peach Blossom is not perfect. But the difference with the new Peach Blossom is that the negatives are now just niggles rather than the huge glaringly obvious flaws of the current version.

  • The access to the rear child is still difficult mainly because the handlebar is in the way, although not having a lower bumper bar any more does makes things much easier. But access is certainly better than it was and adjusting the handlebar height helps give more space to manoeuvre.
  • It is hard to recline the lower seat unit – I simply can’t get my arms all the way around the back of the lower seat to recline it – so I have taken to popping one recline button in, hoping it stays popped in, whilst I run around to the other side and release the other button. I do the same when removing the seat.
  • I find the adaptors fiddly to take off, and also to ensure everything really is clicked in. Many times I have discovered that an adaptor or seat unit hasn’t been fully pressed into position part way into an outing.
  • I can never remember which of the two buttons in the ring are to recline and which is to remove the seat. I am constantly popping the seat off when I really meant to recline!
  • Access to the basket is restricted. There is enough space to push a bag of shopping through the gap, but it may mean cirumnavigating any little feet to do so. It is fine when my baby is in the lower seat, but when my daughter is in the lower seat, with her feet outstretched it is hard to access! I have to plan which child goes in which seat when we go shopping!
  • I find the brake hard to reach and I admit to having had a few wobbly one legged moments in the last month trying to reach my foot underneath the lower seat unit to put the brake on! I would love the brake to be moved to one side so at least I could see it!
  • When my daughter is on the top seat she has worked out she can rock the seat unit alarmingly! I have fed this back to iCandy, but the current Peach also has the same degree of movement, and also my daughter is nearing the upper weight limit. I prefer my eldest to be in the lower seat because it doesn’t move in the same way unless I need the basket space for shopping.
  • It is impossible to put a raincover on the lower seat when my daughter is in it. She doesn’t want to use the footrest (it works well that the lower footrest is now fabric as it simply pushes out of the way), and instead stretches her legs to the edge of the basket. I hope iCandy consider bringing out a throw over all in one tandem raincover.
  • I do not like the way the lower hood rubs on the upper seat’s Peach logo. I also find it a little sad that the Peach logo on the inside of the seat units is now hidden by the fabric folds of the hood. But the logo inside is also hidden when a child is sat in the seat unit anyway!

These points have been mentioned to iCandy and there is still time for them to be looked into.

But I really believe that iCandy are really onto a winning formula with the new 2012 Peach Blossom convertor kit. I firmly believe that when the new Blossom kit is released that the iCandy Peach Blossom will finally get its rightful place at the top of the tandem market for all round style, practicality, usefulness and size.

Other iCandy Peach Blossom & Twin Reviews:

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