The Oyster is one of the most popular pushchairs of all time with universal appeal. Now in its third generation, it has had a total makeover. The new Oyster3 by BabyStyle is virtually unrecognisable from the Oyster2 but still retains that signature Oyster DNA we know and love.
What's in the box?
• Weight: 12kg
• Folded size: 70x57x37cm
• Open size: 77x57x109cm
• Carapace infant i-Size car seat
• Changing bag
• Oyster3 multi-car seat adaptors
Caviar, Pepper, Mercury, Pebble, Truffle, Berry, Regatta and Peacock
Putting the hotly anticipated Oyster3 together was an exciting affair and relatively quick and easy too. Standing back and admiring the finished product, you could be forgiven for thinking that this was a totally different pushchair, not related to the Oyster family at all. It's a struggle to find any similarities with the previous Oyster2 stroller - everything is just... well… a lot grander! The seat positioning is higher and the whole chassis is taller and appears larger overall. There is a distinct air of elegance about this brand-new pushchair, whilst at the same time a sense of solid workhorse too.
We love the revamped turbine-design wheels. They're large and have a futuristic appearance with their chrome-effect rims. The rubber-feel tyres are foam-filled, which means they are both highly durable and puncture-proof, and when combined with the all-round suspension they provide a really smooth ride. We have no doubt that these wheels will roll and roll without showing significant signs of wear.
If you are looking to use your pushchair for park walks on paths and grass then the large rear wheels will stand you in good stead, but likewise city goers will really benefit from the swivel on the front wheels (which can be locked in the fixed in-line position for uneven terrain using the handy single switch on the underside of the footrest). We really grew to love the versatility of the Oyster3 throughout our time using it. You could walk the dog and tackle shopping malls in one day with ease and without ever feeling you'd been caught out with the wrong set of wheels!
The brake is right in the centre of the rear wheel axle and is easy to pop on and off with a touch of your toes.
The shopping basket is fantastic - a really good size. Thanks to the higher seat and carrycot positioning there is plenty of space to slide shopping bags in and out of the pushchair basket with ease. There's also a netted pocket towards the front, perfect for a raincover.
The handlebar is a telescopic height-adjustable bar, which is altered using a central one-handed squeeze button. It is covered in a lovely leatherette that adds to the pushchair's classy overall appearance. The handlebar isn't rounded in your hand - it is more of an angular shape - but once we had given it a few pushes and got used to the grip we didn't find this a problem at all.
It is also possible to use the Oyster3 as a full travel system with the addition of the car seat adapters and a compatible infant carrier. You can buy a matching i-Size car seat with your Oyster3 - it's called the Oyster Carapace and is available separately for £99 or comes as part of three separate multi-piece bundle packages. This adds that extra little bit of convenience when running short errands with your baby.
If you are using this pushchair from birth then you'll most likely be using it with the carrycot on the chassis. The carrycot, which is bought separately for £169 and available in the same choice of fabrics as the pushchair, is packed full of genius features to make those newborn days so much easier when out and about. It's a great size and is also deep so that baby is nicely sheltered and cocooned from the big wide world. The really cleverly designed apron covers the carrycot and curves outwards, creating almost a dome-like appearance. We loved the chic silhouette this gave to the pram.
Removing the carrycot is really simple and is done using just one hand. Just pull what looks like a seat recline lever at the back of the hood and lift the carrycot off without disturbing the tiny passenger inside. If you want to put the carrycot down with baby still in it, there are some really nifty pop-out feet to allow it to stand stable. Pop these feet back in and there are gentle rocking bars which can be used to soothe baby when the carrycot is off the pushchair chassis.
When your baby is over 9kg in weight or able to sit up, you will move on to the luxurious seat unit. The herringbone fabrics are just lovely, and there are so many brand-new on-trend colours to choose from!
The height and width of the seat are brilliant, leaving plenty of room for the tallest and chunkiest of toddlers. The Oyster3 is suitable for use up to 20kg, compared to most strollers, which are tested to 15kg. The harness pads are nicely coordinated with the seat fabrics and the large, round, chunky buckle is easy to operate, even when wrestling a lively toddler into the seat.
The hood is big and features an additional section that can be unzipped for great coverage. It also has a flip-out sun visor and offers UPF50+ protection. The canopy has an integrated ventilation net towards the back, which is really useful in hotter weather, and doubles up as a peek-a-boo window.
The hood is finished with a metal trim to coordinate with the pushchair chassis, which gives a real premium touch - however, it did tend to scratch if it was knocked going in and out of the car.
What's really impressed us about the Oyster3 is the adaptability. This stroller not only integrates a headrest for additional comfort, but the hood, harness and headrest can be adjusted simultaneously by simply using the buttons on each side of the hood. This ensures your little passenger enjoys the same clearance and ideal positioning even as they grow, and was a very pleasant change from having to break our nails threading and rethreading harness straps through small holes!
The calf-rest can be propped up to allow younger babies to rest their little legs, especially when sleeping, but popped back into position to accommodate taller children. Underneath the calf-rest there is a zip-open pocket, ideal for small essentials or an insect net accessory. We used it for our keys when we went for a walk.
The detachable leatherette bumper bar is gate-opening and swings out of the way easily when getting baby in and out of the seat. The seat unit can be attached both parent and world-facing and removing the seat from the chassis is a smooth one-handed action - just pull the handle in the base of the seat and lift!
This fold is just what parents need - simple! The whole pushchair can be folded with the seat in place, facing in either direction. Just fold the seat towards the front of the stroller and use the levers on each side of the handlebar to flip it forwards; when you look down you will see an obvious strong plastic carry handle - grab it and the pushchair neatly folds down and tucks into your side like a suitcase. An auto-locking clip keeps the package in place, and it's freestanding. To put the pushchair up just release this clip and reverse the process. For a full-sized pushchair, the fold is certainly very neat and it left plenty of space in the car boot for shopping and other luggage.
The Oyster3 is a lavish pushchair with an affordable price tag. The large range of gorgeous colours, deeply woven herringbone fabrics and functional features show how BabyStyle has listened to the thoughts of parents and improved upon the best-selling Oyster2.
The extra-large extendable hood, roomy seat and super compact fold mean that this pushchair will certainly turn the heads of fellow parents and passers-by whilst you're out and about. The small but mighty features such as the height-adjustable harness and hood make the Oyster3 that little bit more special than other pushchairs in its price bracket.
If we were to be super-critical, we would say that the chrome chassis and hood trimmings, whilst attractive, scratch easily with daily wear but this is a minor detail in the grand scheme of things.
For such a good price at £499 for the pushchair (an extra £100 over the RRP of the Oyster2 for a wealth of improvements), the Oyster3 offers value for money as well as class and style in abundance.
We give the BabyStyle Oyster 3, 5 out of 5 stars