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The tweaked Britax B-Smart 4-wheel buggy is stylish, easy to fold and pretty hard to fault.
The Britax B-Smart was originally released last year, and to great reviews. It scored full marks in its 2010 MadeForMums test. But following feedback from parents, the B-Smart buggy has received some adjustments in 2011.
The B-Smart is available in either a 4-wheel or 3-wheel design (I tried out the 4-wheeler version) and can be converted into a travel system with one of Britax’s own car seats. Check out our full Britax B-Smart 4-wheel travel system (2011 model) review for more details on this.
The 2011 B-Smart now has a smaller hood with extenders, so it’s compact at first but can then be made to grow with your child. It’s also 1kg lighter, can be reclined to a flatter lying position and a raincover is included – when I tested the original B-Smart last year, the lack of raincover was a real niggle for me.
The Britax B-Smart buggy has a long list of features. It’s suitable from birth with a lie-flat seat, though you can add an optional soft carrycot or standard carrycot if you want. It has a lightweight aluminum chassis, puncture-resistant tyres (i.e. they’re non-inflatable), and a reversible seat direction. The bumper bar pivots to let you easily strap in your baby, and there’s a shopping basket with pockets in it.
I was eager to see how the revamped B-Smart performed, having tested the original when it came out last year.
What we love
First off, assembly is so simple and really takes very little time.
The B-Smart can be unfolded single-handed and the chassis easily clicks together, which is great when in a hurry or caught in the rain.
The tweaked hood design has been really well thought-out. It’s still very large and provides good coverage when in a rain shower. The best bit is the zip around the middle – this extends the hood further, making a sunshade to shield baby Freya’s eyes. The hood is now a little more compact to reduce the buggy’s folded size and now has extenders to make it large enough for your older toddler.
The seat hasn’t changed much and would still be great for a small baby, especially now it boasts an even flatter seat recline. Freya is now 1, and we have the seat in an upright, parent-facing position and there’s plenty of room. The B-Smart looks like it’s big enough to last as your child grows, as the seat is wide and deep and there’s no limit on leg length once the apron is off.
The new and improved B-Smart is easier to manoeuvre, folds a little smaller and as it’s lighter, it feels like a real option for those with smaller boot sizes, as well as those getting about town.
The seat padding feels improved and the harness covers are definitely softer, making the B-Smart cosy. There’s also now the double depth basket.
The one-touch on/off break is definitely the easiest I’ve ever used and the height-adjustable handle means the B-Smart can work for both my husband (6’2”) and me ( 5’3”).
Finally, the model I tested in this season’s ‘Black Thunder’ colourway saw me receive a few compliments when out.
What to watch out for
No major flaws to point out here! The shopping basket is still a little low at the back and I while I worried that stuff might fall out I haven’t yet lost a thing. The puncture resistant (non-inflatable) tyres aren’t as easy to push as air-filled ones, but again, not enough to make me complain.
The 2011 model now sees a raincover included in the price. However, this is offset by the fact the apron no longer comes as standard.
Who is the Britax B-Smart 4-wheel buggy best for?
Parents after a workhorse of a buggy.
The changes to the B-Smart have enhanced this buggy, though it was already a good performer. The fact it can be used as part of a travel system is definitely appealing to those after a total from-birth package. Niggles? These are few and minor at that.