Bumbleride Indie 3 Single Review
This photoset shows the Bumbleride Indie 3 in Walnut. There are also some photos at the bottom of the ‘Pushchair Specification’ page.
The Bumbleride Indie is a beautiful pushchair to look at. The fabrics on this ‘natural edition’ were great quality and well finished. The seat was very padded and there was a head hugger included for a newborn baby. We liked the way the fabrics continued down the adjustable footrest to give the child comfortable legs. All round the seat did look very cosy and luxurious.
The seat unit is a good size with a really deep seat. But this caused issues for our baby for whom the seat was too deep and he seemed to slump in the seat. We thought the seat would be fine for our toddler and sizewise the measurements were good. However the seats are fairly reclined even when upright and as the photo shows in the photosets with the Qtro, Elite and Babyzen show, she just does not look comfortable at all.
The adjustable footrest in theory is an advantage. I really like adjustable footrests for a baby or sleeping child. But every time we put the Indie up, the footrest was already in the upright position. No issue for a baby, but we were mainly using the Indie for our tests with our toddler and so every time we opened the Indie up, we had to run around to the front of the pushchair and use two hands to lower the footrest down. Not only that, but in order to fold the Indie, it is also necessary to lower the bumper bar. So that two, needs two hands to put it back upright in position. So with two sets of two buttons to do before you even start to put the child into the seat, I wasn’t impressed!
The harness was easy to adjust with four height settings. The Indie had good harness and crotch pads to keep the child comfortable.
The Indie bumper bar, at least in the US, doubles up as the support onto which you place the car seat. I dont know whether this will change once the Indie arrives in the UK.
The Bumbleride Indie was very easy to push – incredibly light. The Indie weighs in at a very light 6.8kgs which for an off road pushchair is very light. This is one reason why anyone looking for a double pushchair would consider the Indie as a choice. The air tyres made the Indie easy to push too, and gave a cushioned ride to the child. The Indie was highly manoeuverable and great off road, up kerbs, down steps and on the beach. The handle was foam covered, comfortable in the hand and was adjustable into six different positions to suit all our testers (who were very different heights!)
The recline is a toggle recline which was easy to do. It did take two hands and a push with a shoulder to sit the children back upright though. But it was easier to use than a zip recline which equally need two hands and a push to do!
The hood is large and can be unzipped at the rear to allow ventilation and for the hood to then be moved and angled at the correct position for shelter from the sun. There is what looks like a peekaboo window in the canopy, but in reality there is a small piece of mesh for ventilation, which you can’t see through. We found the rear section of the canopy a bit flappy but it did also help make the Indie look smart and well finished. There is a small pocket in the hood which was useful for keys or a phone.
The basket is large, but the lip on the entrance is very low. This meant that although the basket in theory could hold lots of things, in practice we found that unless we packed the basket really well, that our shopping slid out as we walked. Its not easy to pack groceries well! It was easier to pack coats and a changing bag so that they didn’t slide or get bumped out. Mr BB who is quite tall found that every time he tried to put a bag of shopping into the basket, he hit the fold handle strap / bar and so to get groceries in, he had to stoop right down to get past this. The Indie did not win points with him over this!
The front wheel is quite unusual because it does not tuck in as you walk forwards. So the wheel whichever way it is pointing sticks out at the front. This makes it easy to trip over when parked, and a little annoying say on a bus when we would usually tuck the wheels in to take up less space. The wheel swivels or locks straight. The button on the front wheel to do this is basic, but it works!
The Bumbleride Indie is a tri fold. First the bumper bar needs folding down. Then the upper half gets folded over then by pulling the black fold handle under the seat, the front wheels tucked themselves in as well. Finally there are two plastic locks on either side to hold the Indie together. These felt fairly rudimentary but they worked well and the Indie felt secure when locked. In reality you probably would not bother doing both up.
We did find the fold surprisingly chunky for what is a relatively small light off roader. The hood end sticks up a fair bit. In theory the Indie can be stood upright but in practice it was easier to lie it on its side. It is refreshing to have a fold though where you do not worry about banging the handlebar on the floor and damaging it.
We found that unfolding wasn’t quite as simple. It was easy enough to pull the top half open so that the seat was straight, but the front wheels simply did not flick out as easily as they have done with other Trifold pushchairs that we have tested eg the TFK Twinner Twist Duo or Valco. We had to use our hand to pull the wheels apart which was fine, but it was an additional step to a pushchair that to be honest we would really want to simply flick open. I dont know how easy this would be with the double version. The bumper bar and footrest then need adjusting before using.
The Indie came with a cupholder and newborn head hugger but no raincover.
All round, we loved the look of the Bumbleride Indie, but the amount of steps that it took to open the pushchair were really too many for us – it was simply faffy adjusting everything each time – compared to other pushchairs which are easier to open and get going. But for us, however good quality and well padded the seats looked, our children simply did not look comfortable sat in the seat. Given the baby did not look comfortable, but equally his older sister did not either, we saw no value in keeping this pushchair and it was very quickly boxed back up. W
*EDIT* January 2013 – We have just reviewed the Bumbleride Indie Twin and had a more positive experience and as a result we would very much like to revisit the single Indie pushchair again. However there are more changes on the way for the Indie in 2013 which would resolve or lessen a lot of the main issues above. We would recommend you find out more if you are interested in the Bumbleride Indie, and also read our Indie Twin review here on Best Buggy.
*EDIT* November 2015 – We have now reviewed the Bumbleride Indie 4, and we have also had a more positive experience. The extra wheel seems to make a big difference to the fold and handling. The seat measurements are different, and the seat allows Master BB to sit upright. Please read our Indie 4 review here.
Other Bumbleride Indie Reviews: