Being seven months pregnant, with a broken stroller in the garage, carrying my 11kg twenty-month-old active boy around on my hip was just not going to be an option anymore. Just as we are looking for a good replacement, we were given an opportunity to review the new Agile PLUS Reverse Handle Travel System Stroller, from Steelcraft.
We have been considering Steelcraft strollers, given that it is one of the established brands in the Australian market for as long as I know. I did a quick search on Internet for some reviews – which I have read a number of negative feedbacks on the handling of “Steelcraft Agile Travel System”. Finger crossed.
When the stroller was handed over to me and my first reaction was – oh gosh this is heavy.
2 weeks later, with a few grocery trips, a day in the park and a jog by my partner, I would now say there are a lot of things to like about this stroller, along with some cons. Those cons are subjective and it is up to you to decide. I have put up the detail later in the review.
Image: What to expect when you unbox your stroller for the first time
Assembling the stroller was fairly straight forward. As you would expect, if you do it right you should hear a “click” sound. These were two areas which I had slight difficulties.
Storage latch: Look for this latch and make sure it has been released. It should be fairly easy to figure out how to open the stroller body with the help of the folding strap, located beneath the harness.
This is probably the only step in the entire setting up, which will be easier to have a helping hand.
Folding strap: Clip both the supports to the side of the stroller frame, before you clip on the buttons.
The canopy is significantly larger than what I had in the past and I appreciate that. The rain cover would have been really handy during winter. The canopy stretches all the way to the back and bottom, but it can also be lifted up to allow better air ventilation during the hot summer days. It has mesh openings on the sides so the little passenger can see through the sides when they are lying down.
It is a nice thought from the designer(s) to have a close-able flap on the canopy for parent to check out the kid. I was hoping to have a larger basket at the bottom as I have a relatively larger diaper bag to fit in. Fortunately the additional mesh pocket at the back of the canopy with the zip, has given me the extra storage space that I need.
The seat is fully adjustable to any position. I was pretty sceptical when I saw this design and thought I will have to struggle to adjust the seat at least twice a day. Thankfully, the adjuster with an easy button did the magic. The user manual suggested a different method to raise the backrest, but I find it easier to simply put it outwards. To lower the backrest, simply press the button the pull downwards.
To collapse the stroller, during the first few days I wasn’t too happy with this at all because it is really hard to press and hold the release button while pulling the folding strap (beneath the harness on the child's seat) with the other hand. It took me a while to figure out that I don’t have to hold the release button at all! A gentle press, let go, and pull up the strap, job done. That’s silly – let’s blame it on the pregnancy.
You might have the rear wheels in the wrong direction at times – shake or rotate them back to position and you should be able to clip on the storage latch.
There is a carry handle right next to the release button for you to lift or carry the folded stroller. However, I still find it heavy to lift the stroller (about 12kg) with single hand although my partner usually does all the loading and unloading from the car.
To unfold, unlatch the grey colour storage latch (or clip) on the side of the stroller frame, and lift the stroller's handlebar upwards. Folding and down really took minimal effort.
Given the existing feedback that I read online, I have been testing particularly hard on this, and I have yet to find much issue with this after few trips to the groceries, a trip to the park and a jog around the lake at the east of my suburb (by my partner).
The wheels and the supports are designed with solid materials. I believe that this Agile Plus might have been re-designed to improve to resolve earlier issues.
We have also noticed that the stroller is harder to manoeuvre in the parent-facing mode, because the rear wheels, which become the front wheels during this mode, don’t swivel to allow easy change of direction. It is typically alright for a stroll in the park where you would have plenty of space. However, this will be an issue if the space is limited, or, in a crowded area.
Pro: Stylish, solid material, large canopy, single-hand folding.
Cons: Weight, storage space
After all, this is a stroller which has been designed with a lot of functional features, for both the child and parent. Recommended so I will give it a 4.5/5 stars on this (I have to mark up 5 stars in the page as it doesn't allow half a star)
This product was given to me for review but I have no obligation to provide positive review. This article has been written with my honest opinions. The photos are inserted by Motherpedia editorial team, from the actual product that I have received.
I have found this comment from orangektbear at productreview.com.au, which could be handy if you ever has issue with the wheels
Problems with front wheel - easy fix... A call to britax revealed that all you need to do it remove the front wheels (tilt pram back and press the red button on the top of each wheel to pop them out), ensure that the wheel shaft is clear of any dirt/grime (or small rocks in our case caught in the holes above and below where the wheel sits), and apply some vaseline to the wheel shaft. We tried this tonight and it's like having a new pram! ... solves 9/10 prams with this problem...