The smart stroller is the newest addition to the phil&teds family of strollers. This adaptable and compact system can be used as a toddler stroller, a travel system and/or a pram. This ultra-cool looking stroller has some stand-out features like a waterproof and easy to clean seat but still has a little room for improvement.
The seat is a bit small in the world of strollers. At 11” wide, it is a bit narrower than other seats on the market. It has a 20” seatback and a measurement of 26” from seatback to canopy which is great for taller kids though. Our thin 5 year old tester at 41 lbs and 43” tall fit in the seat perfectly for height but was a bit squished on the sides. (*Even though 5 year olds don’t ride in strollers and phil&teds recommends the stroller for up to 3-4 years old, we use this tester to try the seat near the weight capacity.) The seat has a 44 lb weight capacity that will accommodate up to an average 3-4 year old comfortably.
The seat on the smart looks pretty cool and innovative with its Aerocore seat! This type of seat isn’t as soft and cushy as other seats we’ve seen but it does have some stand-out features. First, it’s super easy to clean! Wipe it off…spray it off…it’s all good! Second, it’s waterproof! So, wipe it with a dry cloth and you’re good to go! We tested these first two features by taking the stroller to the pool with an 11 month old. By the time we left, the seat was wet (from a swimsuit) and had soggy-mashed crackers all over it. I was in love with how easy it was to clean. I literally wiped it off with a damp cloth, dried it with a dry cloth, and it was as good as new in about 10 seconds! A normal cloth stroller seat would never be that easy! Third, it’s hypo-allergenic, shock absorbing, ventilating, insulating, UV resistant and non-toxic. And if you are concerned about the lack of cushioning in the seat – just add the phil&teds “cushy ride”! The cushy ride is a fun seat liner that comes in a variety of colors to pimp out your ride.
There is an adjustable, 5-point “twist & slide” harness that is easy to adjust to three positions for your growing child. This is one of the easiest harness adjusters that we have encountered. The stroller also sports a non-adjustable footrest that gave our taller riders a comfortable place to set their feet.
The seat technically has a recline but because it reclines so little, we are hesitant to call it a “reclining seat”. The seat has two positions: upright and about 1 ½ inches back. So, as you can imagine, not great for a sleepy tot. Also, you have to do the recline from the front with two hands so it doesn’t have a very smooth transition from one position to the other especially when a child is in the seat.
Phil&teds recommends the smart seat for babies starting at 3-4 months. We disagree with this since there is hardly any recline. We would recommend that parents wait until at least 6 months to use the smart seat. Luckily for all those newborns out there, there are two alternatives to the seat so that they can still enjoy this cool ride. You can buy the smart stroller as a bundle with the peanut bassinet. It is a fabulous bassinet that turns the smart chassis into a rolling pram for your newborn. The stroller & bassinet bundle retails for $359 which is much, much less than many of the luxury stroller systems that come with a bassinet. (You can get just the smart stroller for $249). Or if a bassinet doesn’t strike your fancy, try the Graco or Maxi Cosi car seat adapters (sold separately) to turn the smart chassis into a travel system.
The canopy on the smart is large and is what we would call a floating canopy. It can fold all the way forward to follow the sun and protect your little one from UV rays. Note: The same canopy also works on the peanut bassinet. Our only problem with the canopy is that it doesn’t stay attached to the seat back. (That’s why it can fold all the way forward!) This poses a problem with our toddlers (especially the naughty ones!). Our toddlers turn the floating canopy into a game. They constantly fold it all the way forward which makes it completely useless for sun protection. Then they throw it backwards. Forwards. Backwards. Forwards. See where we are going with this? Yeah, we would suggest that phil&teds have the canopy attach to the back of the canopy for all parents with those spirited toddlers.
The smart sports non-adjustable handles that are 38” from the ground to the handles. This is rather short compared to other strollers on the market, so we would love to see phil&teds add telescoping handles to the stroller to accommodate all the tall mamas & papas out there!
The 7” front swivel wheels and 9” rear wheels with suspension will give baby a smooth ride but unlike many other strollers, the front wheels do NOT lock to help the stroller get through a bit of all-terrain surfaces. Therefore, this stroller is best on smooth payment!
The stroller is easy to push and glides along on smooth surfaces though. Even though it is not meant for any type of all-terrain, we were able to push it through grass with a little effort. But without locking front wheels, the stroller does get caught up on any obstacles in the grass. We could maneuver the smart with a small child aboard easily with one-hand but it took a bit more wrist power with a larger toddler aboard. Overall, the maneuverability is a million times better than many strollers out there.
It has a small to medium size basket underneath the seat. It will hold small items and definitely a purse but not a large diaper bag.
The smart has a flat fold that requires two hands to fold it. Fold the canopy forward and you lift two levers to unlock the frame. Push in a safety button as you simultaneously pull up on the seat. Not too bad but not the quickest on the market either. To lock the stroller closed, you flip down the same levers you flipped up at the beginning and the stroller locks tight for transport. It has a compact, flat fold that we had no problem fitting it in the smallest of vehicle trunks.
Even though the stroller looks light, it still weighs in at 18.6 lbs with the chassis and seat together. And if you want to drop the weight a bit, take off the seat and the chassis only weighs 14.2 lbs alone. We personally weighed the stroller to get these weights, but just to clarify – phil&teds say their official weights are 17.5 lbs with the seat and 13.2 lbs for the chassis alone. So, we are agreeing to disagree about the weights.
The stroller is missing our beloved cup holder but you can add the phil&teds thirsty work cup holder (sold separately) for mom or dad. Other accessories sold for the smart are a sun cover, rain cover, travel bag, peanut bassinet and car seat adapters.
The cool looking phil&teds smart stroller will definitely get you and your child a little extra attention from other parents with its fun design. While we’d love to see a deeper recline, adjustable handles and a canopy that attaches to the seat, we still love the maneuverability and how compact the stroller folds.
To watch our full review of the phil&teds smart stroller, click on the video below:
*Thanks to phil&teds for sending us the Smart Stroller to review!*