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Brought out in the spring, this is the latest release from German brand GB (part of Goodbaby International, the group which also includes the baby brand Cybex). The Fashion Edition is an updated version of the compact Qbit stroller, which came out in 2016, and is a companion product to the more recent GB Qbit+. Like the latter, it has the added benefit of a reclining seat so that it can be used from birth, even without a carrycot.
The buggy is billed as ‘the ideal companion for parents navigating the bustle of the city’, with the makers highlighting that it can be folded into a compact package, comprises a 3-in-1 travel system, and includes all-wheel suspension.
Compared to similar compact strollers designed for urban living, at around £269 the Fashion Edition is cheaper than the Babyzen YoYo+ (one of the other buggies I have personally used), although it’s slightly heavier at 7.5kg. It is broadly comparable in price to the Cybex Eezy S Twist, the Baby Jogger City Mini, and the Ickle Bubba Globe Prime Stroller.
How is the Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition different to the Qbit+ All-Terrain?
The Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition is an update to an existing product, rather than a new buggy. It has a particularly large sun canopy and lookout window, but other than that there aren’t significant differences between this and earlier Qbit+ All-City buggies.
The other Qbit+ is the Qbit+ All-Terrain, which has double wheels designed for rough surfaces.
First impressions of the Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition?
My first impressions were positive. It came in a neat box (with not too much plastic packaging – a definite plus). On opening it up, my initial thought was that it’s incredibly stylish – like the buggy equivalent of a Longchamp handbag, with its light brown handlebar, silver frame and canvas-look seat (it’s actually polyester). I felt that it was a buggy I would be proud to travel around with.
I did have some concerns as the Qbit+ looked relatively complicated both to assemble and use at first glance, and initially it appeared quite hefty in comparison to the lightweight options on the market. I currently use an iCandy and have purchased a Babyzen YoYo+ for travel, and while this seemed far more agile and easy to manoeuvre than the former, it looked much more cumbersome than the latter. I also questioned whether it would be suitable for a newborn as the seat is quite spacious, and wondered whether it was really appropriate for a young baby.
How comfortable and easy to use is the seat unit?
The seat unit was already attached, which made life easier, but it was not immediately obvious how to remove it should you want the carrycot attachment instead, and the instruction manual did not provide much clarity.
I found the Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s seat, which has a five-point harness, very simple to use and the straps were easy to loosen or tighten as needed. There are shoulder pads, the fabric is wipe clean and the manufacturer states that it is machine washable, although again it was not obvious how to detach it to do this. The seat seemed incredibly roomy for my newborn, and even with a toddler it didn’t feel cramped. It has a comfortable headrest, which is particularly useful to provide support when using it in the lie-flat mode.
What age is the GB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition’s seat unit suitable for?
It’s advertised as a buggy you can use from birth, and I was happy to strap my baby in lying down. He was very comfortable in it from the get go, despite it being a different experience to his normal pram, and the straps did not seem to bother him in the slightest. The safety bar provided extra reassurance that he wouldn’t slip out.
That said, I don’t think I would have been confident using the Qbit+ Fashion Edition before around 6 weeks or 5/6kg weight, as a newborn would be swimming in such a vast seat. I also had some concerns taking him out in a forward-facing stroller – it was fine on a quiet walk but if I was on a busy street where I couldn’t easily hear him I would prefer to use a parent-facing carrycot at this stage.
Likewise, as with most buggies, the baby is fairly exposed to the elements in the lie-flat mode (although there is a foot muff available for an additional price). This was fine for a newborn in the summer but would be less desirable in colder weather.
The brand does sell a carrycot attachment (RRP £129.85 – considerably cheaper than the Babyzen newborn attachment and it looks much sturdier) and this is the only way I would have been happy using it from birth. In general, I would advise that this is suitable from about three months.
What is the maximum weight capacity of the Qbit+ seat unit?
The Fashion Edition is advertised as being for 0-17kg – ‘from birth up to approx. 4 years’. It was certainly sturdy and spacious enough for the toddler I tested it with, although as a compact buggy with a fairly narrow seat, it could be a tight squeeze for a child of four.
Does the seat recline?
The Qbit+ Fashion Edition seat can be used upright or lie-flat. It is incredibly easy and quick to switch between the two, although the lookout window was only useful in the lie-flat mode.
Is the seat reversible?
No, the Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s seat isn’t reversible.
How is interacting with your child in the GB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition?
The large lookout window is a really brilliant addition to the Qbit+ design, especially with a newborn baby – I found it reassuring that I could see him easily while pushing and check whether he was awake or asleep.
The downside was that I could only use the window when it was not too sunny, as otherwise the light streamed in on to his face. It is also only effective to use when in the lie-flat mode.
How effective is the seat harness?
The Qbit+ buggy has a five-point seat harness, as well as safety bar. Clicking it into place is very simple and does not need to be done simultaneously on either side, which is helpful when you only have one hand. It took a few moments to understand how to adjust the straps to the correct size, but once I was familiar with the mechanism it was very smooth and simple to use.
How easy is it to manoeuvre theGB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition around town?
The manufacturers highlight that it is ‘easy pushing on flat surfaces thanks to single wheels on front and rear’ and also state that it has four-wheel suspension. On smooth pavements it glided effortlessly, and the Qbit+ is probably the best buggy I’ve used so far in terms of going up and down kerbs without disturbing the baby.
It is perfect for taking round a shopping centre or on the high street, and is also relatively narrow, which is a bonus when negotiating busy shops or travelling along streets with significant pedestrian traffic.
How does the pushchair ride on challenging surfaces?
The Qbit+ Fashion Edition handled more bumpy terrain (uneven pavements, cobblestones and grass) well enough, and did not get stuck at any point. My son didn’t stir when I used it on these surfaces, and it felt more equipped for this terrain than either the Babyzen YoYo+ and the iCandy. However, it is very clearly designed for city living and well-paved streets – I wouldn’t use it on a longer country walk.
How much does the GB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition weigh, and how does it actually feel when pushed?
The Fashion Edition weighs 7.5kg and is comparable with the City Mini, but quite a bit heavier than the Babyzen YoYo+ (6.2kg) and the Silver Cross Jet (5.9kg). That said, it didn’t feel heavier or more cumbersome, especially after manoeuvring the iCandy around. It’s so easy to steer and to push on and off the pavement that it felt like it weighed less than it did. Of course, my son is only seven weeks old – with an older toddler I noticed the weight difference more.
How easy is the Fashion Edition to lift and carry?
This is where the additional weight was particularly noticeable, especially compared with the YoYo+. The Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s compact billing would suggest it could be easily carried, when either expanded or collapsed. While two of us could lift it with the baby in it up or down stairs, it required considerably more energy than the YoYo+ and I would definitely need to use a ramp or a lift if I was out and about on my own. Even when collapsed, it is heavy to lift into a car boot, although I could manage to do so solo.
How does the Qbit+ pushchair fold?
The Qbit+ Fashion Edition has easily one of the best folding mechanisms I’ve seen, and requires you to simultaneously click and squeeze two buttons from the handlebar. The manufacturers state that it is a one-hand folding mechanism and it really is as smooth and intuitive as that. You can fold it with the seat on, which is ideal, and the fact that the mechanism is on the handlebar rather than underneath the seat is particularly useful, as it enables you to collapse it while keeping an eye on your surroundings.
What do you think of the wheels?
The wheels on the Qbit+ can be removed, and part of the construction process requires you to secure one set of wheels. Their size is comparable to other buggies designed for city living, but I found the wheels occasionally locked for a moment after use of the brake. This was frustrating if I wanted to move quickly.
Tell us about the brake – where is it, how do you use it?
The brake is the main downside of the Qbit+ Fashion Edition. It’s in the centre of the base and, while it’s easy to flick on by pushing it backwards with your foot, to take it off you have to push forwards. My foot repeatedly became caught under the buggy while doing this, and it was even more of an issue for my husband. Also, it didn’t feel as sturdy as the brake on the iCandy. I felt I would need to pay extra attention to ensuring the buggy was fully stopped if walking downhill.
What do you think of the hood on the Qbit+ Fashion Edition?
The Fashion Edition’s hood offers excellent coverage on a sunny day and is easily extendable from a half to a full canopy. I tested it during a period of warm weather and found it to be well-sized to keep the sun off my son. I would still need a SnoozeShade for very sunny days, but it definitely kept him shaded and cool as we were out and about. It stayed up nicely too.
How sturdy is the GB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition?
It’s no less sturdy than other similar buggies, but I wouldn’t take this into the countryside or on to any kind of rough terrain (in fairness, it’s not intended for that). I would also be slightly nervous in strong winds as the base is quite compact and occasionally rocked from side to side. But, generally, for urban living I would not have any reservations about using this.
The Qbit+ felt robust in terms of quality of fittings, although because it is designed for travel use I would expect to be taking it in and out of the car on a regular basis, meaning it would be subject to wear and tear. However, it didn’t seem to scratch easily and the fabric could be wiped if needed.
How compact is the buggy when folded?
The Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s main selling point is that it folds into a compact ‘cube’ – it folds to a travel size of L:27x W:43x H:58cm. It is neat to store and fits easily in the boot of a small car or on a crowded train or bus.
However, it is larger than the maximum size to take on board an aeroplane, unlike the YoYo+ or the GB Pockit+ All Terrain Ultra Compact Pushchair.
How easy is the Qbit+ to store?
One difference between the Fashion Edition and some other compact strollers is that there isn’t a bag to store it in. That said, it is not at all bulky to keep by your front door or in your boot, and the simplicity of the fold mechanism means it’s no hassle to keep folded up if space in your home is an issue.
What do you think of the basket?
I ran a few errands to test out the Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s basket capacity, including buying a large watermelon, which it took with no difficulty. The basket is well designed and easy to slip things in and out of, even with the seat fully reclined, and you can leave a few things in the basket while the buggy is fully collapsed.
It’s not enormous, although slightly more spacious than that of the YoYo+, but I could easily fit the rain cover and a couple of shopping bags in it. It is too small for my changing bag but I’ve not yet found a buggy that easily holds this and anything else.
I also tried it with a small bag secured to the handle by a pair of carabiner clips and this was absolutely fine as well.
Is the GB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition easy to use?
The rain cover comes with the Qbit+ buggy. It’s neat to fold away, although I found it slightly confusing to fit it on the buggy (the manual wasn’t particularly helpful to explain this either). It includes a shaded panel which could be used to block sunlight to help a baby to sleep while out and about.
How easy is it to use theGB Qbit+ All-City Fashion Edition on public transport?
Given it is designed for city living, I was hopeful that the Fashion Edition would be easy to take on and off the bus, and I was pleased that this was indeed the case. It is sleek enough to fit comfortably beside another buggy in the designated space on a bus, but – perhaps most importantly – it’s so easy to fold that I could do this quickly and efficiently if needed.
It required two of us to carry it when taking it up and down steps at a train or tube station, so I still needed to use the lift – but that’s the case with any other similar buggy I’ve seen.
Does the Qbit+ fit in the boot of your car?
The buggy fits comfortably into the boot of my small car (a Ford Focus), and would be compact enough for most vehicles even with suitcases or other shopping bags. You don’t need to remove the Fashion Edition’s wheels or the seat to store it, which is a huge plus for using it on the go in a city.
Can the Qbit+ be used as a travel system?
The Qbit+ Fashion Edition can be used as a travel system, although you have to purchase the adaptors separately (RRP £24.95). It fits with GB or Cybex car seats, but for any others the manufacturers advise checking with the brand for compatibility.
I found the fact that it was not compatible with my car seat slightly frustrating, as it assumes you purchased everything at once.
The car seat sits on top of the buggy chair, which means you don’t have to remove it to convert it for this usage. I use the car seat setting with my YoYo+ and can see that being a huge plus.
Did you test the Qbit+ as a travel system?
I was unable to do so as I don’t have the relevant car seat or attachments. I have the Maxi-Cosi Pebble, which is compatible with Bugaboo, Quinny, Maxi-Cosi, iCandy, YoYo+ and Uppababy, so the fact that the Fashion Edition requires a same-brand car seat is a downside.
What do you think of the buggy’s style?
As you’d expect from a product called Fashion Edition, it is highly attractive. It comes in four colours; Rose Red, Vanilla Beige, Night Blue and Velvet Black. I chose the blue as I felt it was bright but would withstand stains better than the red or cream.
What’s in the box?
- Buggy frame
- Seat unit
- Rain cover
- Instruction manuals
Is it easy to build the Qbit+ Fashion Edition?
I was hugely impressed with how simple it was to build the GB Qbit+. Neither I nor my husband find following instructions easy, and the manual didn’t look promising – it seemed there would be a number of stages, and the diagrams were fairly uninformative.
In reality, it took a matter of minutes – we simply had to add on the wheels, disconnect some velcro straps, and pull it up to the upright position. It was much more intuitive to build than any other buggy I have tested and did not require watching any videos.
Is the Qbit+ Fashion Edition worth the money?
It is comparable to other products on the market, even taking into account the cost of the attachments. If you planned to use it solely as a buggy, it might not be worth paying for the 3-in-1 travel system. But generally, given how easy it is to use, I would consider it value for money.
Where can you buy the GB Qbit+?
You can buy the Fashion Edition from Amazon, Precious Little One, and Kiddies Kingdom.
Do you have to buy a lot of additional extras?
You only get the Qbit+ buggy, frame and rain cover for the initial purchase fee – everything else is added on. This is consistent with other brands, and it’s worth noting that because you have the lie-flat option you can technically use it from birth without having to buy a carrycot. You can purchase accessories including a sun parasol, a foot muff, a coffee cup holder and car seat adaptors.
Who would the Qbit+ Fashion Edition be most useful for?
This is a good stroller for everyday use in a city. Because it is so incredibly easy to fold and unfold, I would especially recommend it to anyone who wants a simple buggy for on-the-go – for taking in and out of the car or on public transport. It’s probably not suitable for anyone who likes long country walks, or for people who want to store a lot in the basket, and if you mostly walk everywhere you may want a buggy that is better equipped to handle strong winds. It is not as lightweight as some options, so it is also worth considering how much you will need to lift this in your day-to-day life.
Also, although the Qbit+ can be used from newborn, I would have wanted the carrycot if this was my sole buggy, which would have bumped up the cost. I would suggest this is an ideal buggy for anyone with a six-month-old baby, going up to around three years old.
What do you feel are the Qbit+ Fashion Edition’s closest competitors, and how does it compare?
This is marketed as a compact buggy and is around the same weight as the Cybex Eezy S Twist and the City Mini. Broadly speaking, it has similar features to most buggies in the same price bracket and the cost of the extra features is not significantly higher. The simple one-hand fold gives it the edge over some of its competitors. However, the fact that it can’t go into the cabin of a plane does let it down in comparison to more lightweight options.
If you’re torn between this and the original Qbit+, which should you choose?
It is pretty similar to the original Qbit+, but with the added lookout window so it’s an improved version. The alternative would be the Qbit+ All-Terrain, and I would make my choice based on lifestyle – as someone living in a city, I’d go for this one.
The GB Qbit+ Fashion Edition is a cleverly designed buggy that would fit well into the life of a busy parent navigating a city – whether by car, on foot or on public transport. It’s attractive, practical and easy to use, although slightly bigger and heavier than some other compact strollers.
Jennifer Lipman tested the Fashion Edition with her 7-week old son around greater London, including in parks, on the high street, on public transport and out and about in her car.