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The Mothercare Vio, a budget-minded urban 3-wheeler, is lightweight and compact when folded. Just be prepared to pay that bit extra for the cosytoes and accept it doesn’t offer much shopping space.
Mothercare is well known for offering a huge range of baby equipment. As well as stocking other brands, it has its own range of buggies. The Vio is one of these, and like many products from Mothercare, it’s fairly priced, at just £125.
Designed to offer a comfy and versatile ride from birth to 15kg, the Vio doesn’t support a car seat but is an excellent buggy that takes up very little storage space. It easily fits under my stairs, along with the vacuum and everything else, and I don’t have to spend half an hour reorganising my car boot to accommodate it either.
The Vio comes with a free weathershield, but no cosytoes, and Mothercare’s universal cosytoes will set you back an extra £34.99. In Citron (yellow and black), it will work equally well for boys and girls.
What we love
How stressed you get putting a new buggy together and how it feels in those first few minutes of pushing it around can create a lasting impression. I’m pleased to report that I manage to get to grips with the Mothercare Vio under pressure (my in-laws were watching) in just 10 minutes.
Nathaniel, 23 months, also loves sitting up in it and pointing at the boats on the harbour where we live – usually he’s a fan of slouching!
One of the best things about the Vio is the ease with which it folds and the small amount of space it takes up in a car boot. By depressing the handle axel, pressing in one button and pulling up levers either side of the handles and pushing forward, the Vio folds to less than half its size. Although it isn’t a one-handed job (you have to do both levers at the same time), I can fold it while holding Nathaniel’s hand – very useful if your toddler takes off at speed. While there isn’t a carry handle as such, the footrest is durable enough that it doubles as one when folded.
At less than 8kg, the Vio is very lightweight. Because of this, it is incredibly easy to steer and almost hovers up kerbs. It’s a treat not to have to look for a rear axel bar to push against to get some leverage.
Nathaniel is very tall for his age (nearly 100cm at just under 2 years), so I like that the Vio gives him ample foot and calf support, and there’s still growing room.
What to watch out for
As with some other 3-wheelers, the area for a basket underneath is limited and I can only put one shopping bag in the mesh basket – forget trying to put more than one 4-pint of milk in there at a time. Also, because of where the basket is and the construction of the buggy, if Nathaniel’s having a nap and positioned almost horizontal, I can’t access the basket at all.
The Vio has a hook lock to keep it together when folded. However the hook is quite flimsy and has come open a few times. This is down to the fact the bit to attach the hook to isn’t directly in front of the hook, it’s diagonally opposite because of the three wheels.
Although the Vio has plenty of back and chest padding, I wouldn’t feel comfortable letting Nathaniel sleep in a flat position in the buggy if he was under 1 year because there isn’t any support around his head when he’s lying down. It would be very easy to knee him when lifting the buggy up kerbs.
The Vio is more difficult to carry upstairs when Nathaniel’s in it. My husband takes the handles and I take the front, but because the Vio has three wheels, not four, I feel as if the buggy could topple. This isn’t necessarily something specific to the Vio – you may find it with 3-wheelers in general.
Who is the Mothercare Vio buggy best for?
Parents after a spare from-birth buggy that can be stored in the car and not take up much room.
A great, versatile and nifty-looking buggy that’s worth the money. However, the Vio lacks storage and you may not feel it offers enough support in lie-flat mode to use from birth everyday.
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|Child age (approx)||Birth to 3 years|
Dimensions & Weight
|Dimensions||H:108cm W:59cm L:104cm|
|Dimensions (folded)||H:87.5cm W:37.5cm L:52cm|
|Travel system compatible||No|
|Seat facing direction||Forward facing|
|Front wheels||Lockable swivel|
|Accessories included||Removable seat liner, rain weathershield, chest pads|