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The striking iCandy Core is a real head-turner, combining good looks, luxury and functionality with cool, innovative features such as the multi-mode wheelbase and new rechargeable LED light. A world-first on the market, it comes complete with 2 sets of wheels; both rural and urban modes, so that you can enjoy family adventures in the city and countryside with a single pushchair. It is travel system compatible, can be used from birth right up to 25kg and comes in a range of attractive colours.
Comfort for baby and parent remains a priority. It has the largest seat unit yet of all iCandy products and, thanks to its choice of wheels, it’s a smooth ride whether nipping around crowded shops or exploring off the beaten track. At £1,280 for the iCandy Core pushchair and carrycot, or £1,450 for the complete bundle, which includes a huge selection of accessories like a footmuff, SPF 50+ screen and cupholder, it certainly sits at the premium end of the pushchair market, alongside the likes of the Cybex Priam 2022, £1,329.85.
Tara tested the iCandy Core with her 5-and-a-half-month-old baby, William, and 3-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Elodie, putting it through its paces around the New Forest where they live. They tested the pushchair in both rural and urban mode using the carrycot and seat.
What were your first impressions?
The iCandy Core pushchair oozes class and style. It’s a quality product with a premium finish and definitely has that extra special kerb appeal. Its super soft knitted jersey fabrics and sleek frame certainly give it the wow factor.
How easy is the iCandy Core to build?
According to iCandy “you’ll only ever need one pushchair”, so there’s a lot to unbox including 8 wheels, various adaptors and a number of accessories (I tested the complete bundle package). However, it’s easy to build with a concise quick start user guide and a QR code to the more in-depth online manual. In total it took around 5 minutes to assemble.
What do you think of the carrycot?
It’s beautiful – I’d have loved this carrycot when William was a newborn. The carrycot is very smart and stylish, with an attractive stitched pattern and beautifully soft, luxury fleece liner, while the mattress is firm and breathable. The SPF50+ extendable hood gives excellent protection from the elements and ensure babies remain snug and cosy, particularly in harsher lit environments such as shopping centres and supermarkets.
I love the large mesh ventilation window at the back of the carrycot. It offers real peace of mind that there’s maximum airflow around your baby in hot weather, perfect for the UK’s hotter summers or for taking abroad.
The carrycot is easy to remove and attach, effortlessly releasing and clicking into place, and there is a swivel bumper bar and zip-off apron – both very easy to detach using one hand.
How big is the iCandy Core’s carrycot?
William was 5-and-a-half months at the time of testing and very tall for his age (97th centile for his height) so unfortunately, the carrycot was too much of a tight squeeze for him to be comfortable. However, measuring L78cmxW38cmxD23cm, it should see most babies through to 6 months. It’s suitable for use from birth.
Is the carrycot suitable for overnight sleeping?
Yes. Like all iCandy carrycots, it’s suitable for permanent overnight sleeping. So, as well as naps on the go, it’s the perfect travel cot solution or alternative to a Moses basket at home.
How do you fold the iCandy Core?
How easy is the iCandy Core pushchair to fold?
The iCandy Core boasts a one-handed fold, but I was disappointed at how tricky it was to master. Essentially, you tap the break on, slide a grey catch positioned underneath the handlebar across, push the height adjustor on the handle down, then punch down until it drops.
When my husband and I tried it the first few times, nothing happened and we feared the pushchair was faulty. However, after watching a YouTube video several times(!), we finally got the hang of it and, after a couple of weeks, it thankfully did become much easier. There really is nothing worse than wrestling a pushchair in a crowded car park!
The ‘forward then down’ motion you need to collapse the pushchair is vigorous, so I’m not sure how well I’d have fared straight after my C-section surgery. You can either fold it down with or without the seat attached to the chassis, and the seat can be either parent or world facing, convenient for parents on the go. Once it’s folded, you can tuck the wheels in and it’s freestanding, so compact and easy to lift and store. Unfolding the pushchair is thankfully much easier; you simply slide a grey clip across, let it roll up and pull the handle up.
How good is the iCandy Core to push and steer?
It’s an absolute dream to push and without a doubt the smoothest pushchair I’ve ever used. I found myself using the pushchair with one hand most of the time, either holding Elodie’s hand with my free hand or using William’s nap times to catch up on phone calls. Despite the larger wheels (in rural mode), it’s very manoeuvrable and takes all the effort out of steering for you. As you’d expect from a city stroller, it’s great for nipping around narrow or crowded areas and mounts high kerbs with ease. Even when pushing my very tall 3-and-a-half-year-old daughter and it was still a smooth drive for me, despite the extra weight!
What are the wheels like on the pushchair?
Very clever. The interchangeable and removable wheels on the iCandy Core allow the pushchair to be used on all terrains. The rural set comprises a longer, more substantial wheelbase, offering the functionality and performance of a larger pushchair, whilst the urban set is a shorter and lighter wheelbase, creating a compact city stroller. It’s simple to adjust the chassis from country to city mode and swap to the smaller wheels.
Due to living in the New Forest, we mostly used the larger rural wheels, which made light work of our forest adventures. I have previously used a 3-wheeler – the Out ‘n’ About Nipper Sport, £349 – so we have been spoilt tackling bumpy terrain. The iCandy Core rural mode doesn’t compare to how easily that charges over tougher terrain like large tree roots or rocks, but the Core did really well on the open forest, grass, gravel tracks and market town cobbles, only feeling slightly bumpier than the pavement. William looked extremely comfortable and relaxed.
You can lock the front wheels for greater stability or let them swivel, which is best for everyday use.
What is the iCandy Core’s ride-on board like?
The integrated ride-on board, which can carry up to 20kg, is a saviour for tired toddler legs, especially on days out, and eliminates the need to purchase and attach additional products. When we were unpacking the iCandy Core, Elodie spotted the board straight away and loved hopping on for a comfortable ride and interacting with her baby brother when we were out and about. The set includes elevator adaptors for use with the carrycot.
What’s the chassis like?
The chassis is stylish in a matt black and looks like it will be extremely durable. iCandy offers a 5-year warranty across its entire range, but I imagine this pushchair will last much longer.
How do you rate the buggy handle on the iCandy Core?
The handlebar has good grip, even in wet weather, and there’s a simple mechanism to easily extend it from 95cm to 105cm. I am 5ft 9in and I find it very comfortable to push with the handlebar fully extended. There are handy bag hooks on the inside of the handlebar, perfect for carrying all the essentials, too.
What’s the seat unit like on the iCandy Core pushchair?
The Core’s seat unit is the largest in the iCandy range, offering extra comfort for babies and plenty of room to grow. The clamshell seat is suitable from 0-25kg and adjusts to 4 different positions. When it is fully reclined, the high sides ensure a newborn is snug and, at 95cm long, even my tall 3-and-a-half-year-old was comfortable.
There’s a swivel bumper bar and easily adjustable headrest and shoulder straps I managed to tighten using one hand. Plenty of padding in the seat and a pop-up padded calf rest provides extra comfort.
The Core offers both parent and world-facing seat configurations, as well as the option to add elevator adaptors to raise the height of the seat. These were really handy so William could join in with meals out, as he’s still slightly too young to sit comfortably in a highchair.
How good are the brakes?
Excellent and extremely responsive! You can activate them with the lightest of touches, even bare foot or wearing flip flops. There’s a handy green or red light indicator making it clear you’ve secured the pushchair.
What’s the hood like?
The large hood is a huge selling point. Hoods on other pushchairs I’ve tested can be quite floppy, especially in the lie-flat mode where gravity takes hold, and it’s stressful when you’re constantly fiddling with the hood to try to get it to stay in place to protect your little one from the wind or sun. The SPF50+ hood on both the carrycot and seat is extendable and extremely sturdy and rigid, providing excellent coverage to the baby so they are well protected and snug for naps. Both hoods feature a large viewing window with mesh ventilation.
How do you rate the iCandy Core’s basket?
Top marks! The huge shopping basket has a 48-litre capacity and holds 10kg in weight, which is handy when you’re out shopping or on a day out with a baby and a toddler. You can easily store coats, picnic, teddies and bags inside. Its extra-spacious fan basket design means it’s easy to access and store bulkier items. There’s even a built-in drainage vent.
Are there any features of the iCandy Core you really like?
The revolutionary new LED Visibility Hub Light is unlike anything the industry has seen before. The USB rechargeable lights are positioned at either side of the pushchair and are a handy addition when out and about in dark and low light conditions. They are easy to clip in and out for charging and my daughter loved pushing them to turn them on and off.
What’s in the box?
I tested the Core pushchair and carrycot complete bundle which included:
- Chassis with integrated ride-on board
- Seat unit
- LED Visibility Hub Light x 2
- LED Visibility Hub Light charger and key
- Rural wheel set
- Urban wheel set
- Wheel bag
- Elevator adaptors
- Car seat adaptors
- Raincover x 2
- Footmuff and liner
- Parasol/cup holder clamp
- SPF50+ screen
- Cup holder
What are the additional accessories that you can buy?
Travel bag, £132
Can the iCandy Core pushchair be used with a car seat to create a travel system?
Yes, it easily converts to a full travel system with the supplied car seat adaptors, which simply click into place. You can read a list of compatible car seats here.
Now you’ve tested it, what would you have wanted to know before purchasing the iCandy Core?
I wish the new Core had been available when William was newborn because, though expensive, the quality is exceptional and its adaptability eliminates the need for additional products such as an extra travel cot, buggy board and smaller city stroller. Its large hood with air ventilation would have given me the confidence to take William out more, knowing he was well protected from the elements.
I’d recommend reading the full online manual as well as the quick start user guide to ensure you’re using the Core to its full potential, as there are a lot of nifty features you may miss like the bag hook or the adaptors to raise the height of the pushchair.
Is the iCandy Core pushchair worth the money?
At £1,450 for the Complete Bundle, which includes extras, the iCandy Core is priced at the top end of the market alongside offerings from Bugaboo and Cybex, but it’s undoubtedly a premium product worth the price tag. For me, the adaptability and longevity of the pushchair makes it worth the money and perfect for new parents to see them through their child’s early years.
How does the iCandy Core compare to similar pushchairs?
|Product Name||Weight||Folded Size||Carrycot suitable for overnight sleeping?||RRP|
|iCandy Core||12.6kg||L:75.5cmxW:61.5cmxH:39cm||Yes||From £1280|
|Bugaboo Fox 3||9.9kg||L:86cmxW:52cmxH:34cm||No||£1115|
|Cybex Priam 2022||12.9kg||L:85cmxW:51.5cmxH:31.5cm||No||£1329.85|
|Mamas & Papas Ocarro||13.7kg||L:78cmx W:59cmxH:40cm||No||£1096|
Where can I buy the iCandy Core bundle?
Aside from my difficulties folding the pushchair, iCandy have thought of everything to make parents’ lives easier with the Core. This really is a stunning product with pioneering features designed to join families on every adventure, from city trips to forest hikes, thanks to its interchangeable wheels. If you are looking for a pushchair robust enough to cope off-road and compact enough to nip around tight spaces, this really is a great option. It is a pricey, but if you can afford it its versatility and longevity – lasting all the way from newborn to when your child outgrows a pushchair – make it hugely appealing for growing families.
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Dimensions & Weight
|Dimensions (folded)||H:42.5cm W:61.5cm L:75.5cm – With seat unit|
|Child age (approx)||Birth (with carrycot/cocoon) to 5 years – (approx.)|
|Travel system compatible||Yes|
|Compatible car seats||
|Seat facing direction||Forward facing and parent facing|