Bébécar Spot Review by Best Buggy
The Bébécar Spot is a luxury umbrella fold stroller with a good quality fabrics. There are four colour ways (Moonlight, Black Dazzle, Cinnamon and Charcoal), and two chassis options for the Spot (a painted finish, or a beautiful chrome chassis). We have the chrome finish and it is absolutely gorgeous. Our Spot certainly caused heads to turn as we went out and about. The Bébécar Spot is a premium product, and the quality is clear to see in the finish and feel of this pushchair.
Child Comfort and Harness
The Bébécar Spot is a pushchair which is suitable from birth to 15kgs. There is a padded seat which lies flat for a newborn, and also has plenty of room for an older toddler. The Bébécar Spot seat is 50cms tall, and is also very wide. The seat is slightly higher than most buggies, which means there is a longer distance to the footrest. This is good for an older child because they can’t reach the floor easily. The footrest is well placed to allow little feet to rest comfortably. There is a lift up calf rest, with two positions, to support the legs of a sleeping child.
The seat is reclined using a lever at the rear of the seat. There are three recline positions, including upright and lie flat. The lever also has to be used to sit the seat back up again i.e. the seat can’t simply be pushed up from behind. A sign of good quality!
Master BB is currently 98cms tall. He has lots of seat height behind him. Master BB hasn’t yet fallen asleep in the Spot, but the seat would easily accommodate him.
The harness is good quality. The Bébécar logoed satin sheen harness straps are just one example of the attention to detail on this buggy. The waist and shoulder straps are conjoined, so they can not be separated into separate pieces. This has the advantage of having just two parts, which need to be pieced together, before being inserted into the buckle. The buckle is beautifully chunky and can not easily be undone. The red buttons clearly indicate where the buckle needs pressing to release.
There are thick harness pads which are usefully held in place by press studs. We needed to alter the harness height for Master BB. This was very tricky and took a long time to work out! However Master BB has plenty of room in the harness for a thick coat.
Hood and Bumper Bar
The hood has two sections. The front section is framed and pulls taut. There is a clear panel at the back of this section of the hood which allows you to peek on your child, although the view is not very clear.
The rear section is a flap of fabric which covers the reclined seat. The rear section can be zipped off, thus the hood can be also used as an overhead canopy. There is a handy large pocket suitable for keeping small items like a phone or keys in. A few well placed velcro tabs would have been really useful on the fabric flap; both to secure the flap when the seat is reclined, but also to be able to tuck the material up out of the way when the seat is upright. It is possible to pull the flap fairly securely around the base of the fully reclined seat. However, when the seat is semi reclined, a gap appears between the seat and the fabric flap, because the latter can not be secured. A small detail, but really does need addressing.
When a child is sat up after being reclined, the hood flap obscures the top of the seat, and needs tucking behind the seat, so that it is out of the way.
The hood can be removed completely if desired.
There is an integrated padded bumper bar already fitted to the Spot. The bumper bar can be easily undone by pressing on a button on one side of the bumper to swing it away, thus giving access to the child. We found it very useful to be able to allow Master BB to clamber into the seat on his own, before doing the bumper bar up. The bumper can be totally removed if desired. The bumper bar can be left on when folding. When unfolding the Spot, the bumper bar is supposed to automatically form into a curved shape. However, we have found it is sometimes necessary to pull the bumper bar into shape once the pushchair is open.
Handlebars, Handling, Wheels, Suspension and Brake
Unlike most buggies, the Bébécar Spot has only 4 wheels i.e. no double wheels. The wheels are soft to the touch i.e. not hard plastic. The wheels have ball bearings. Thus the handling of the Spot was very smooth and the wheels made no noise at all! It feels nothing like a typical umbrella fold buggy! We did manage to push the Spot one handed (with a shopping basket in the other). It was tricky, but we managed! Ideally you need two hands to push.
The handlebars are a good height. I am 5ft 6ins and they were perfect for me. Mr BB is nearly 6ft, and he enjoyed pushing the Spot too. The handlebar are textured plastic, with a little ‘give’ in them which makes them comfortable whilst being easy to grip.
However, what we are less keen on, is the way the handles splay by about an inch, side to side. For a pushchair which is otherwise so well constructed, having movement in the handles, does let the pushchair down.
There is an interesting detail on the handlebars – 3 small crystals have been inset into each side. Very pretty! We also love the round metal embossed Bébécar plaques on each side, and at the rear, which do set this pushchair apart as being a premium product.
The Bébécar Spot amazingly has adjustable suspension. This is highly unusual to find on any pushchair, but even more unusual to find it on an umbrella fold stroller. The suspension can be set to softer for a small baby (under 8kgs) and harder for an older child (over 8kgs). This means that any child will get a very comfortable ride! The suspension is activated by pressing down very hard on two square buttons by the rear wheels. We had a bit of a fright when one of the suspension buttons released in a quiet place! It was no trouble to pop it back on again, but it did come up with a loud ping!
There is a rear parking brake near the right hand wheel. This is quite easy to find as it protrudes outwards. The brake was decisive and easy to flick on and off.
Storage and Accessories
As mentioned the Bébécar Spot has a useful storage pocket in the rear of the hood. The Spot also has a good sized basket. However access to the basket is very restricted from the rear and sides. Bébécar have thoughtfully added velcro to the front of the basket, thus creating an opening through which items can be pushed. The only issue we had was that Master BB’s legs obstructed this access and we found it difficult to realistically use. It would be easier with a younger child on board to access the storage. However access via the side of the basket would have been more useful.
Bébécar make several matching accessories for the Spot. There is a parasol, matching footmuff and a choice of several changing bags. Note that there is no raincover included with the Spot – it is an optional extra accessory.
Fold / Unfold
Although the Bébécar Spot is an umbrella fold pushchair, it has a unique fold which we found easier than a traditional umbrella fold. However, the fold does require two hands, whereas a traditional umbrella fold pushchair can be done one handed.
At the rear of the pushchair, the central bar needs to be flicked up to release the chassis lock. Then, on the chassis just below both handles, there is a small trigger button. Slide these up, one on each side, whilst at the same time, fold the pushchair forwards. The pushchair will fold umbrella style to the floor. There is an autolock, however we did find that each time, some fabric obstructed the closure, and we had to pull the material out to be able to lock the Spot closed. The folding mechanism has been specially designed to stop little fingers getting trapped when folding the pushchair.
Opening the pushchair simply involves undoing the fold lock, pulling the handlebars upwards, and then pressing on the ridged footplate on the back bar using a hand or a foot. What is very noticeable about the Spot is the sturdy construction. Where most umbrella folds have thin metal struts at the rear, the Spot has sturdy, chunky plastic bars.
The Bébécar Spot is a substantial pushchair, and thus weighs more than a buggy usually does. It is also quite long when folded – so check your car boot size before buying. It was possible to tow the Spot along behind us as we walked which saved us carrying it. There is no carry handle.
The Bébécar Spot is a stunning pushchair to look at. It bears a premium price tag, but it can justify that in the attention to detail, finish and quality. The chassis, fabrics, harness, overall feel and the tiny details are all good. However, a top end buggy needs to be perfect, and the Spot has some minor details which we would like to see addressed. The basket access, rear hood flap, fabric obstructing the autolock, and harness adjustment could all be made better or easier. We would also like to see the sideways movement in the handles eliminated, which we believe would then make the Spot a truly lovely push. The super suspension and soft touch wheels are great. We also feel that a raincover should be included with a pushchair at this price point.
Overall, if you are looking for a top of the range, premium, good quality, sturdy, luxury stroller; then the Bébécar Spot is it.
We have awarded the Bébécar Spot a 4 Best Buggy Gold Star rating.
With many thanks to Bébécar and to Nick for their help with this review.
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