Best Budget Buggy 2017

Joie Nitro Review

Weighing in at under 8kg and sporting a very reasonable price tag, the Joie Nitro packs an impressive punch.

With a fully reclinable seat, adjustable calf rest and decent-sized storage bucket, the Joie Nitro has all the features you would usually expect from a more expensive model for a fraction of the price. It can be used from birth until your child weighs 15kg, and is a relatively smooth ride due to its complete wheel suspension.

What's in the box?

Nitro pushchair (needs some assembling), rain cover, carry strap, manual

Pros

- Suitable from birth to 15kg
- Extremely lightweight (7.6 kg)
- Small price tag
- Buggy board can be attached to pushchair

Cons

- Fiddly rain cover
- Significantly smaller sunshade than other strollers tested

What are the specs?

Suitable from: Birth – to 15kg
Seat positions: 4
Weight: 7.6 kg
Folded dimensions: H108 x W28 x D31 cm
RRP: £60 at time of review
Colours: Available in blue or pink

Key features of the Joie Nitro

- Suitable from birth to 15kg
- Very lightweight
- Four wheel suspension
- Fully reclinable
- Umbrella fold

Compare prices of the Joie Nitro

How does it handle?

Even while carrying a newborn in a sling, our tester found the Nitro very easy to handle. Its foam handles come up nice and high, and it's light and easy to manoeuvre, almost effortless in fact.

In the time that we tested the Joie Nitro, we pushed it across 80km of terrain, including pavement, dry bumpy grassland, soft wet ground and up a steep incline. The four-wheel suspension and well-padded seat meant that our mini tester found the whole experience pretty comfortable. We were really impressed with how this fairly budget buggy stood its ground amongst much pricier models.

What's the foot brake like?

The foot brake, though sometimes a little stiff, is very easy to get the hang of. The front wheels can also be locked for extra stability when stationary.

Would you recommend using the Joie Nitro with newborn babies?

The Joie Nitro buggy can be used with newborns, so if you're after something very lightweight from the very start of your baby's life, this could be a good option for you. However, given it's such a small stroller, it's definitely not as snug or smooth as a pushchair or travel system designed solely for newborns. There's no parent facing option with the Joie Nitro and you won't be able to clip a baby car seat onto the frame. Not deal breakers exactly, but there are other pushchairs , designed with more functionality for newborns, albeit at a higher price tag.

If you're looking for a very lightweight buggy that can be used from birth, we'd recommend the Silver Cross Reflex (8.5kg) or the BabyZen YoYo (6.2kg).

Most parents we've spoken to who've used the Joie Nitro really rate it as a great pram for slightly older babies and toddlers. In fact, many confess to buying the Nitro as a lightweight option for a holiday and then never returning to their big pushchair on their return.

We got a Joie Nitro for £50 in Mothercare last year. Easy fold down, reclines, lightweight but not flimsy. It replaced our normal buggy not long later as it was easier to use.

How easy is it to assemble?

Everything about the Nitro is user-friendly, which is particularly important in those early sleep-deprived days. Assembling it out of the box was quick and easy – even with a toddler and a baby demanding our tester's attention, it’s ready to roll in no time at all.

What is the recline like?

The Joie Nitro boasts a one-handed recline in four positions including a lie-flat position perfect for napping on the go.

How easy is the umbrella fold?

The Joie Nitro has classic umbrella fold. There are no tricks to getting it open and locked into place and folding it down is super straightforward too. After only one outing, our tester was confident about getting it into the boot of the car quickly.

How easy is the Nitro pushchair to carry?

This buggy is super light, 7.6kg in fact, so lifting it was very easy. A carry handle on the side of the frame is also really useful for picking it up and carrying it when needed. Joie call the Nitro a “handy travel mate”, and we have to agree.

Can you attach a Buggy Board to the Joie Nitro?

A big plus to the Joie Nitro is that you can safely and comfortably attach a Buggy Board to the frame, making it truly versatile for families with a baby and a toddler in tow. In short, our tester found that the Nitro did everything she needed it to, and both her kids loved being in it.

I am so happy with the Joie, it makes getting around on the bus and doing a big shop so easy, and the design is amazing. Practical is what you need when you're a new time mum, and I would highly recommend

Are there any extras?

The shopping basket under the seat is generously sized, especially for a buggy, but it can be hard to access if the seat is fully reclined. Our tester used a standard foot muff with the stroller in the winter, but be warned, the accompanying rain cover can be a faff to get on, and we'd have preferred stronger fastenings. The hood was also a bit fiddly and could be a bit broader to provide more sun shade during the (brief) British Summer. This is especially key if you plan to use the pushchair from birth when your baby is especially sensitive to the sun.

Overall, the Nitro is really sturdy and should last well with daily use for 2.5 years. It's light, compact, easy to close and open out. Reclining the seat can be done with one hand, the handles are comfortable, and the foot brake is very user friendly. And at such a reasonable price, you can't really go wrong with the Joie Nitro stroller.

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