Disclosure: This product was sent to me free of charge by Graco to be reviewed as part of the Graco Ambassador competition. However, as per my PR info disclaimer, this review is my unbiased honest opinion of the product.
Product: Graco Evo Mini
Price: £179.99, exclusive to Mothercare
Age Range: From birth to approx 3 years (0 – 15kg)
Manufacturer’s Description: The go anywhere stroller. Sleek, slim, cool and light weight – the pushchair for when on the move. Size does matter!
Rating: (5/5 stars)
Review: As participants in the Graco Ambassador competition, we have been testing the Graco Evo Mini for the last four weeks. We were very excited when it arrived, and I posted lots of photos showing what was in the box & what it looked like put together.
As I posted a few weeks ago, our first impressions of the Graco Evo Mini were very favourable; the pushchair was very easy to put together, with clear & concise instructions (there is nothing scarier than a thick book of an instruction manual!), and seemed to be very easy to use.
In the box you get: the main frame, rear wheels on the back axle, front wheel, rain cover, hood, and instruction manual.
Putting it together is really simple and quick; all of the parts simply clip together like a ridiculously easy puzzle. It’s impossible to get it wrong!
I liked this pushchair immediately – the seat is so well padded and comfortable that I have no concerns about my 7 week old baby girl using it, and I love the fact that the seat can lie flat, so it is suitable from birth. I think that it is an appealing design, and the Grenadine orange/red colour is very attractive and suitable for either a boy or a girl. Unisex colours are great for large purchases such as a pushchair, as they enable you to reuse it again in the future for another child, whatever the sex.
We have certainly put the Evo Mini through its paces over the last month, taking it off-roading at the otter sanctuary, around an Easter Egg trail in the woods, on the beach, over snow & ice, and we even drove it across the gangplank onto a boat for a ride up the River Waveney – all in addition to the usual pottering around the neighbourhood and shops, of course. Here are a few photos showing just what we’ve been up to with the pushchair in order to test it out as thoroughly as possible…
Since the Evo Mini is suitable from birth to approx three years, we have been able to test it with our newborn baby Lydia, and her older sister Georgiana, who is almost two.
Georgie loves to walk a lot of the time, but she definitely enjoyed the comfort of the Evo Mini when she used it. I took her on a few outings in it while carrying Lydia in a wrap sling, and each time she seemed very happy with her mode of transportation! Georgie is quite tall for her age, but has loads of space to grow into the pushchair; I can see us still using it for her for at least another year.
Lydia has clocked up a lot of hours in the Evo Mini since we received it, and must find it a very comfortable ride as she has slept and slept and slept! The suspension is excellent, especially for such a lightweight buggy, which makes it quite a smooth ride even on the wide variety of rough surfaces we took it on.
The pushchair is incredibly easy to push, even Georgie can push her little sister along in it on the pavement… although Daddy had to help with the steering, there was a lot of crashing involved when she tried to go solo with it! Joking aside, an adult can easily push the Evo Mini one handed over any smooth surface such as pavements or around the shops. It handled surprisingly well over the snow, beach, rough tracks and icy pavements – although these situations all required two hands on the handlebar! The lockable front wheel helped to keep the pushchair on track in the icy weather.
One of the back wheels did develop an annoying squeak after we took it onto the sandy beach in Cornwall, but a squirt of penetrating oil fixed the problem and as this could happen to any pushchair I don’t really count this as a negative against this particular stroller. In fact, I would be lying if I said it hasn’t happened to one of our pushchairs before.
At just 6.2 kg, the Evo Mini is very light weight and compact – I have gotten very used to slinging it around with one hand, in and out of the car boot. This is an ideal pushchair for people with small cars, or those who travel on public transport a lot – it even fits in the boot of a mini! We have a large people carrier and the Evo Mini is positively swallowed up by the car. I also tried it out in my dad’s car boot, and it squeezed in with plenty of extra space for our shopping.
You can fit a lot in the shopping basket, which is a really important feature for me! I don’t drive so being able to carry a lot of shopping or bags is really useful when I go out on my own with the girls. Unlike a lot of pushchairs, the basket is still easily accessible when the pushchair is in lie flat mode, which we have found very useful over the last few weeks. James and Georgie had some fun finding out how many toys they could fit in the basket in this video:
Here is a another quick video, showing the other great features of the Graco Evo Mini. In this video you can see how easy it is to fold, fit the rain cover, use the sunshade, and adjust the backrest:
The one-handed fold is really easy to use; there are two buttons on the handlebar, which you squeeze and slide as appropriate, before pushing downwards to collapse the frame. If the rain cover is in the basket, a little bit of pressure can be required just to get the frame to clip shut, but you can still do this with one hand. Opening it up is really quick, perfect when you need to get going in a hurry. The pushchair will fold with the rain cover attached to the hood, which is useful if you know you are going to be getting it out of the car in the rain and want to be able to attach it before you fold it up to leave the house.
As well as protecting the Evo Mini very well from the rain, the cover also does a great job keeping your little one sheltered from the wind. It completely covers the whole of the hood and rear of the pushchair, instead of just hooking on the front of the hood, meaning that the child inside is very well protected. We were out in some very strong winds whilst in Cornwall and Suffolk on our travels this month, and it has done a great job keeping Lydia snug and warm.
During the past month, quite a few of my family members have given the Evo Mini a push, and all have reported back favourably! The only niggle anyone mentioned was that it doesn’t have a window in the hood for you to keep an eye your child. Although this doesn’t bother me too much, I can see that it could be annoying to some parents.
Overall, I think the Graco Evo Mini deserves a solid 5 stars. I would certainly recommend this pushchair to anyone looking for a long-lasting good quality buggy, especially if they intend on using public transport a lot. It may be light weight, but it is still sturdy, comfortable, suitable from birth, and doesn’t seem to make many compromises on features in order for it to be so compact and usable.