Uppababy Vista Stroller Review
I love it when a pushchair I am not convinced about surprises me and turns out to be superb! The Uppababy Vista is one such pushchair which has surprised and left me impressed.
I will admit I wasn’t convinced on paper and in photos. The Uppababy Vista looks tall and spindly, and very B-Dual like and I couldn’t help comparing the two. However there is absolutely no comparison, not least because the Vista is a light little feather compared to the heavy B-Dual. But having looked at, examined, played with and pushed the Vista, I have to say I am struggling to fault it. It really is one superb, highly manoeverable, good looking pushchair!
So lets start from the beginning:
The Uppababy Vista comes in a massive box. The box sat in our hall for some months whilst we waited for the Rumble seat to arrive. The box is large and very heavy which didn’t help when I already had preconceptions. But upon opening the box we found two more boxes. One contained the bassinet and the other contained the chassis and toddler seat. When we came to pull the chassis out, we were really shocked at how light and slim it actually was compared to the weight of the box!
The chassis is quite beautiful. It is shiny without being too shiny, but its not matt and boring either. It’s pretty and it made a good impression on us. The chassis opened easily, (there is a plastic lock on the side,) and with the wheels popped on we were ready for the seat unit. The seat unit surprised us too. The one thing I was dreading was having a metallic, shiny looking pushchair because a lot of the photos I have seen on Vistas seem to look like this (was it just the lighting because my photos taken with the flash do make it look very shiny!?). But the Denny colour way was a beautiful red with a slight sheen on it but not the strong metallic looking I had been expecting. It was perfect The seat unit is very well padded with a board up the back (well padded on top).
The Uppababy Vista seat unit looks large, and yes it is large, but I think one detail the Vista has so very correct is that the leg rest is longer than average – because most pushchair manufacturers seem to forget children’s legs grow! If you look at a lot of pushchairs, the seat units are large – I can name any number where my 3 year old looks comfy in the seat – but the footrest always lets things down either by being too near to the knee, or too narrow for big feet, or doesn’t adjust downwards enough. The Vista footrest is great. The stats (use the ‘Compare Pushchairs’ tool at the top of the page) show that the Vista seat units are tall, wide and roomy. They are taller than the back of the iCandy Peach or TwinGo seats and yet my daughters head is well above the seat line, and even my 15 month old is not far from the top of the seat. I can’t quite work out why this should be so when both children have plenty of room for growth in the Peach and TwinGo seats. I did at one point reach to move the hood up higher and suddenly realised that the position was fixed. Admittedly my daughter is 3 and 99cms tall, but its rare I find her head comes above the line of the top of the seat, and there wasn’t much room for growth considering that the Vista has quite a high upper weight limit (22.6kgs or 50lbs). But equally she is 3, she did have plenty of room in the seat and was absolutely fine, very comfortable and dandy – and would be so for some time to come. The seat unit easily pops off and can be turned to parent or outward face. We liked the swing away bumper bar but it was a little tricky to squeeze back into position to close.
The harness was good and adjusted easily for both children. There are 3 height settings. The seat unit can be used from 3 months old, and there is a baby Snugseat liner available to buy, but to be honest the carrycot is beautiful so use it
The inside of the hood is lined with a silver fabric. We assumed this is SPF 50 proofed like the fantastic pop out sun visor. There is no need for parasols or add on visors with the Uppababy Vista, nor do you need to remember to take them with you! It is built in ready to go! We like pushchair manufacturers who think about the small details.
Also in the box are the raincover and insect net. Admittedly we didn’t try these but we believe they are quite snug fitting.
There is a massive basket. It is one the biggest baskets we have seen. We could fit a lot of shopping in the basket. However we did have issues because although the sides are high, the front and back of the basket dips down low and we had objects sliding out. We had to be really careful to tuck bags down the sides or tie the tops to keep everything inside. But I am never going to complain too much about a big basket!! There is also a small pocket on the back of the seat unit into which Uppababy thoughtfully left a load of business cards! It would have been better if they had put the make, model, basic details, address and UK stockist details on if they wanted some free advertising instead of a load of lines for me to fill in But its a useful pocket for a phone, wallet or keys.
I have to say I pride myself on being able to work most pushchairs out after having handled so many, so I wasn’t terribly impressed to have to reach for the manual to work out how to fold the Vista. As always its not hard once you know how, but I struggled for ages before giving in! It isn’t one to leave with the grandparents and say, “dont worry, you will work it out” because they probably won’t! Even more so if you have left the carrycot or car seat with them too! (see later). It is actually a very simple, press the button in on the left, push the handle down to the line and then the Vista chassis will release, fold back on itself and self lock. The Vista will fold with the seat on in either direction but its much neater folded with the seat outward facing. The Uppababy Vista will also freestand when folded.
Other than that the Vista is pretty self explanatory. There are numerous footrest positions, (we think there are 8,) including upright in the air and tucked right under the seat (useful for when the Rumble seat is on). There are 4 recline positions forwards and reverse ways including lie flat and bolt upright (nearly 90 degrees) which is fab for older toddlers. The recline is a simple button / lever on the back of the seat.
We loved the position of the peekaboo window because instead of being high up on the hood, its quite low down. We had a perfect view of the children instead of just their feet like on so many pushchairs. With the Rumble seat on, it offered a great view straight through of the child in the Rumble seat which was fab to have. The peekaboo window has magnetic closures but also a toggle to keep it rolled up and open. There is mesh across the window.
The Uppababy Vista bassinet / carrycot comes in its own box and inside the box is a black bag with the carrycot inside. The carrycot also comes with its own insect net and raincover. Upon opening the black bag, I have to say I was blown away at how gorgeous the carrycot was. The fabrics are thick and luxurious. The carrycot is lined all round the top and under the apron with a suede type feel fabric. The inside has a thickly quilted fabric and mattress. You really get the feeling that this is a well made and luxury item. I believe all the linings are natural fabrics.
It took us a few minutes to set the carrycot up. The frame instead needs tugging into a locked position using two straps. It’s not hard to do, and the great thing is that the carrycot can easily collapse down again for travelling.
The carrycot handle is a hard one which forms the hood frame. Ideally the hood fully up to carry the bassinet, but the hood could be unzipped from the handle if not needed. The hood is on a ratchet, so can be adjusted and left at various angles. Inside the hood once again is an SPF protected pop out visor. Unlike the main seat sun visor, there are mesh panels at the sides for ventilation. Around the back there is a zip which when opened reveals a large all round mesh panel which allows more ventilation for a baby when it is hot. The base of the carrycot has a small flap which when opened reveals ventilation holes in the base board for extra air. I don’t know (please check), but air holes in a carrycot base usually means that the carrycot is suitable for overnight sleeping. Certainly I know in the US, Uppababy sell a bassinet stand, but I don’t know if this is approved for use in the UK. But the hard base means that the carrycot will stand on the floor.
The Vista carrycot clicks easily onto the chassis parent facing (there is a neat red / green indicator to check the carrycot or seat unit are correctly fitted). However, removing the carrycot was when we reached for the instructions once again, after searching and failing to find, release buttons. The solution was simple but obscure. Around the back of the carrycot, underneath the hood is a button with a red safety hook. Lift the red hood and then release the button and the carrycot easily pops off. Just remember to tell the grandparents that one too!! Its not logical at all!! There is also a small zipped pocket around the back of the carrycot.
But quite seriously I was stunned at how gorgeous and luxurious the carrycot was. I would be proud to show off my newborn in it. They would also be very comfortable and cosy in winter or adequately cooled in summer.
Also in the box are also included a set of Maxi Cosi car seat adaptors to, a travel system. This was a lovely surprise as you usually have to pay extra for these with most leading brands. We used a Maxi-Cosi Cabriofix in the photos. Again the car seat adaptors were very easy to click into place. The seat felt sturdy when in place (the seat can only parent face which is important if you want to use the Rumble seat). However for the third time we had to reach for the instructions to remove the car seat adaptors when we could see no obvious button. I have to say these are the most unusual car seat adaptors I have met to date. Underneath the adaptor are two pins. These need squeezing together to pull the adaptor out. It wasn’t hard but equally there are much simpler Maxi-Cosi car seat adaptors on other brands of pushchair! A button release would be much easier.
The Uppababy Vista has two large rubber covered wheels at the back and two smaller lockable swivel wheels at the front. The suspension feels quite hard when standing, but equally we didn’t particularly notice feedback from a hard ride when we were walking. In fact my overall experience of pushing the Vista was that we didn’t really notice we had it! And thats pretty good to be honest! It was light, easy to push, simple to manoeuvre. The handlebar is a good shape and is foam covered – very comfy. The handlebar extends really high – up to approx 109.5cms (its probably not a pushchair for people of shorter stature) so is great for tall parents. One of the features of the Vista is its ‘floating axle’ which means that the rear axle arches through the centre of the basket so that taller parents shouldn’t kick the axle as they walk. The footbrake is situated to one side, so is out of the way. It is an easy flick on / off brake.
Folding the Uppababy Vista, once again had me reaching for the manual. It is once again simple when you know how! The Vista will fold with the seat attached facing either direction, but the neatest fold is with the seat outward facing. I am not sure anyone would ever realistically fold the Vista with the seat parent facing. The Vista free stands when folded which is great. There is a lock on the side. However the Vista fold is a little bit too open for my liking but I guess that is what helps it freestand.
I have seen several times that the Uppababy Vista has been regarded by others as better than a Bugaboo, I couldn’t believe it, but I have to grudgingly admit they are right. The Vista is certainly less problematic and more sturdy with better storage, larger seat, better features eg recline, adjustable footrest, sun visor and more. The Vista folds as one piece and stores freestanding. The Vista stands tall and proud with its sleek straight lines whereas the Chameleon has a cute, curvy, softer feel. But the Vista does win on features by a long way.
All round I have to say I am struggling to fault the Uppababy Vista in any way. I can’t find anyone else who has a bad word to say about it either. I know a couple of people who have Vistas and rave about them, and I now see why.
Have I been won over? I would say yes. I would certainly recommend the Vista to anyone because its excellent with high specification with everything you need to get started all in one box (just add a footmuff – Baby Ganoosh – and car seat!) which makes it great value for money compared to say a Bugaboo or iCandy where everything is an expensive extra. I have to say I was highly tempted to keep the Vista. In fact I really would love a Vista, but Mr BB stamped his feet, and I wasn’t allowed to keep it.
But I can’t wait now to see the Cruz
Just to add, we recently discovered that the Uppababy Colours are called after the children of Uppababy employees (Jake, Denny, Cole, Lindsay, Maya etc). It makes more sense why the colours have such seemingly random names when you know that information.
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