Silver Cross pushchairs and prams: the overview
There is nothing that conjures up an image of royalty quite like a Silver Cross pram. One of the oldest nursery companies in the world, Silver Cross is a quintessentially English brand that has been making buggies since 1877.
A family owned company, based in North Yorkshire, Silver Cross was created by engineer William Wilson, the inventor of the first coach-built pram. Coach prams have a hard body/carrycot type base, C-spring suspension, large spoked wheels and a folding hood. And, despite the many technological developments that have been introduced to the pushchair industry in the last 130 years, Wilson’s method of pram building remains a popular, and virtually unchanged, technique for today’s manufacturers.
More than 10 million babies have been pushed in a Silver Cross product over the years, so it is not surprising that the ‘Rolls Royce of prams’ also has been the baby-vehicle of choice for many monarchs, from King George VI to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who chose the Sleepover Elegance for Prince George.
However, owning a buggy that is fit for a prince or princess does not come cheap. Prince William and Kate Middleton reportedly spent £1450 on their buggy. Silver Cross do make a range of affordable lightweight strollers for less than £150 but, if you want to buy a Silver Cross travel system, you should expect to spend at least £590. And if you simply must have one of Silver Cross’ iconic classic pushchairs like the Balmoral, you will have to fork out £1450 for the privilege.
Of course, if money’s no object, you could always opt for the Aston Martin edition of the Silver Cross Surf, which will set you back at least £2000, but be quick: it is a limited edition and only sold in the UK in Harrods.
There are 11 different pushchair models in the Silver Cross range – from modern travel systems and pushchairs (Wayfarer or Surf) to lightweight strollers (Pop) to the iconic classic models (Kensington and Balmoral). You can purchase all Silver Cross products online in its website. But if you would prefer to see and test the buggy first, John Lewis and Mothercare are two of the biggest retailers selling Silver Cross in the UK.
- Click through the slideshow for more on each model in the Silver Cross range
Silver Cross Wayfarer (the lightweight one): new-look classic
In the 1980s, Silver Cross was already one of the largest nursery manufacturers in Europe but it was the launch of the Wayfarer that really cemented its success during that decade, selling over 1 million units.
But this new version of the Wayfarer, launched in 2013, only has its name in common with the old version because it is now a truly modern pram. Still lightweight, the new Wayfarer is now a 3-in-1 travel system with a separate carrycot and seat unit. It is heavy duty and durable, with secure re-enforced stitching and is a “pleasure to steer”, according to our MFM reviewer. It also won the Gold at this year’s Prima Baby Awards in the Best Travel System category.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Wayfarer for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Surf 2 (the all-terrain one): compact and sporty
Silver Cross really stepped out of its ‘classic pram maker’ with this buggy. The original Surf was released in 2010 and updated earlier this year. An all-terrain travel system, the Surf 2 is “one of the most lightweight and compact travel systems around,” according to our reviewer.
Featuring a lie-flat carrycot that is suitable for overnight sleeping and compatible with the Silver Cross Simplicity car seat, the Surf 2 is an great buggy choice for 1st-time parents. And, if you’re the get-up-and-go sort, you can also buy a jogger wheel to turn it into a 3-wheeled running buggy.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Surf 2 for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Freeway (the travel system): cosy and practical
Hitting the market back in 2009, the Freeway is a cross between a pram and a stroller, making it suitable from birth but also a product that will grow with your child up they’re 3 years old.
Our reviewer was blown away by the luxury of the carrycot/seat unit, calling it “as soft as silk”. Impressed with the overall comfort of the pram, our reviewer also said it is lovely to push: “You can walk for miles, knowing you and your baby will be happy.”
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Freeway for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Pioneer (the modern one): big, bold and bright
Available in 7 brilliant colours, the Pioneer is a robust, adaptable and well-sized pram, equipped with everything you need – and more – from a top-of-the range contemporary pram.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Pioneer for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Sleepover (the royal one): pram icon, reinvented
The result is a luxuriously spacious, iconic-looking pram with all the features of a modern pushchair, including a reversible seat unit, pneumatic tyres, a height-adjustable handle, a large shopping basket and a multi-position recline.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Sleepover for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross 3D (the cheapest one): the budget choice
The cheapest buggy in the Silver Cross collection, the 3D pram may have less frills than its higher-priced counterparts but that doesn’t stop it from being one of the brand’s bestsellers.
An easy, compact fold with machine-washable pram insets, the 3D is perfect for toddlers, although it can be used from birth. Our tester found the 3D to be lightweight, easy-to-fold, and really liked the fact that it is freestanding when folded.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross 3D for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Reflex (the versatile stroller): slimline and adaptable
A compact umbrella-fold stroller that can turn into a reward-facing pram and a travel system, the Reflex is a buggy of many talents. Our MFM reviewer was impressed with the pram’s slimline size, adjustable ergonomic backrest, UPF 50+ sun protection hood and the twin LED safety lights at the side of the pram, which improve its visibility in the dark.
The Reflex is super-handy buggy to have if you have older children. Our testers tried it out with a tall 5 year-old and had no problems with space or manoeuvrability.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Reflex for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Pop and Pop Duo (the ultra-lightweight ones): folds one-handed
The Pop and the Pop Duo (its double version) is very much a one-handed buggy designed for busy parents on the go. Super-easy to fold, push (on the single version) and carry, it weighs a dainty 6.5kg.
The Pop is a Silver Cross bestseller. It comes complete with a rain cover, a multi-position cup holder and sun protection hood.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Pop for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross Balmoral and Kensington (the originals): guaranteed head-turners
Both these buggies are still handcrafted in Yorkshire, using the traditional method, and are synonymous with the Sliver Cross brand itself. There is no mistaking a Kensington or Balmoral pushchair on the street, both have large spoke wheels, C-spring suspension and traditional style carrycots, all conjuring up images of a Victorian nursery.
As you might have guessed from their looks, neither the Kensington or the Balmoral are car seat compatible or feature other mod cons you may expect from a contemporary buggy. But when you buy either of the prams, you are buying a piece of history and tapping into the glamour of all those famous names who’ve pushed one before you.
Silver Cross Simplicity (the car seat)
There is nothing traditional about the Simplicity car seat: it comes complete with state of the art ISOFIX compatibility, side impact protection, a 5-point safety harness and generous padding for comfort.
As far as Group 0+ car seats go, it is good value for money at £130, but you will have to buy the Simplifix ISOFIX base for an additional £125 if you do not already have ISOFIX in your car.
- Read our MFM review of the Silver Cross Simplicity for an expert lowdown on its pros and cons.
Silver Cross accessories and furniture
The range of extras available to buy from Silver Cross does not end with bits and pieces to add to its buggies. Of course, there are the accessories you would expect, such as the sun parasols, buggy boards, changing bags and (luxury, of course) tote bag. But Silver Cross specialises in making nursery furniture and bed linen, too.
At the very high-end of the range, a complete Silver Cross nursery furniture set, inclusive of cot bed, dresser and wardrobe, costs between £900 and £2000.