There’s no denying the Bugaboo Cameleon is a looker. Plus its dazzling array of smart features means it’s a hit (albeit it a very expensive one) with mums and dads.The Bugaboo Cameleon sells itself on its versatility as well as its style. You can face your baby towards you, or away from you, lying flat, sitting up or anything in between. You can attach a Maxi-Cosi CabrioFix car seat to the chassis, customise the fabrics and change your mind on a whim. And with a height-adjustable handle bar and adjustable swivel wheel suspension there’s even enough gadgets to get dad enthusiastic. So long as he’s not fussed by the price tag.For the premium parents, it can ride 2-wheeled on any white sand beach and snow wheels are an optional extra for those ski-ing vacations.
Price wise, the £695 doesn't include the tailored fabric set (that's the sun canopy, seat inlay and carrycot/bassinet apron). This costs an extra £84.95.
It was my partner who was won over by the Cameleon’s looks. A mountain bike nut, he fell for the aluminum frame and suspension details. And when it arrived, I felt so proud. This was one cool pram. Not only did it look the part, the Cameleon is lovely to push. Ignoring the fact that the small swivel wheels can be a little tricky to control on their own (if you’re wheeling onto a bus forwards you may end up pushing the buggy into the door frame), it takes city life in its stride, with a tight turning circle that’s a dream in tiny spaces. This is also a wonderful buggy for my son, Finn. He could face me for a year, and turn outwards occasionally for a change of scenery. The only friend I had who didn’t have a Bugaboo Cameleon ended up buying one secondhand, especially as she couldn’t bear not seeing her baby while she pushed.And once your baby’s too big for the Bugaboo Cameleon, you can get a good deal on resale. Ours ended up costing no more than £300 once we'd factored in the resale value.
This is not a buggy for the constantly in-and-out-of-the-car family. The chassis is difficult to fold down and even though everyone in the shop will tell you you’ll get the hang of it, if I’m honest, it never became easy. It requires a push, a pull, a flick and a kick. And even then it’s pretty bulky. The under-buggy storage bag is fiddly in any position. When the carrycot is on, it’s almost impossible to use. With big wheels forward I felt I looked like I’m a drunk in charge of a toddler. I tried it excitedly on the country road by my parent’s house soon after Finn was born and ended up weaving down the road failing to control it – very embarrassing. However, other mums online have found it fantastic to steer off road and in the country, so perhaps it was something about the way I was doing it.But the cons are minor compared to the pros, until Finn hit about 2½, when it felt like he had grown out of the seat. He literally didn’t fit under the hood and if it ever rained we had to go out with him holding an umbrella. I expected this to be my only buggy but all my Bugaboo-owning buddies and I traded our luxury models in for lightweights once our kids were 3 years old. The Bugaboo gets heavy to push as your baby gets bigger, too.
Mums prepared to splash out for the coolest looking buggy in an array of fancy colours.
The Bugaboo Cameleon looks amazing and drives nicely. It’s got some great features but the odd design flaw that might make you question the high price tag. However, these buggies keep their value, so if you sell it on at the end, you can’t go wrong.
First reviewed 2009. Updated 24/02/2012.
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