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With its newborn insert, the Graco Cleo can be used as a rear facing pramette, making it more versatile than most, but as a compact-fold buggy, it isn’t as cheap, compact or lightweight compared to some of its competitors.
This is a fairly chunky, robust pushchair and offers a good deal of comfort for your baby, and if you want her to be facing you for the first few months but don’t want to buy more than one buggy, the newborn insert could swing the decision for you.
This buggy offers adjustable handles and legrest, a good size basket and two cup holders (one for mum, one for baby?), plus a padded, removable, gate-opening bumper bar. It’s also car seat compatible so can be used to form a complete travel system. The brake is operated via a central pedal, which is pushed up and down with your foot.
What we love
Although the price may seem quite high, this does include the raincover, footmuff and newborn liner complete with mattress, so you’ll have all you need to take you from birth to toddlerhood.
The basket is massive, and the handles offer eight different positions (they rotate rather than going up and down).
There are three shoulder strap positions so it will be comfortable for babies and toddlers alike. The seat is a good size so will be perfect as your baby gets older.
The removable, machine-washable seat liner is really well padded, so offers great comfort, and the hood is a good size, with a pocket at the rear and a mesh viewing/ventilation section. It also has zip-off sections for use in both rear and forward facing mode.
It’s freestanding when folded and locks shut (with a bit of a push).
What to watch out for
That newborn liner may seem like a great idea, but it’s a real fiddle to put on, and increases the bulk considerably when folded. You’ll need to follow the none-too-clear diagrams very carefully to get it right.
The seat is supposed to lie flat enough for a newborn but in reality is slightly raised (mainly because the buggy’s carry handle gets in the way), so when the insert is in position, your baby’s head will look as if it’s going downhill. To complete the pramette, the insert has to be zipped to the hood, but one zip is longer than the other, giving an untidy finished look.
Folding is also a bit troublesome, involving much pushing and pulling, and the wheels must be in the locked position to do this – opening is much easier, but for a supposedly compact buggy neither is particularly simple.
The seat recline is operated via a strap at the back, giving an infinite number of positions, but the cup holders get in the way of it going very upright and it doesn’t feel very tightly secured.
Who is the Graco Cleo best for?
Parents seeking a versatile buggy, that’s particularly good for toddlers.
The Graco Cleo, while suitable from birth, works much better without the newborn insert as a functional, standard buggy. There are other pushchairs around that provide better a pramette option, so don’t buy the Cleo solely for this reason.