iCandy have completely re-designed their popular Apple 2 Pear pushchair. Does it stack up?
iCandy launched the Apple 2 Pear modular pushchair system in 2007. This was the first one seat to two seat pushchair that sat within a single pushchair footprint. The new version is 40% lighter, and has a 11% bigger basket. It can now fold without having to remove the seat unit. The question is, is it any good? We find out in our iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review.
Whats in the Box?
• iCandy Apple 2 Pear Pushchair Chassis
• Seat Unit
Suitability: From 6 months (From Birth with Carrycot or Newborn Nest)
• Flavour Pack RRP: £60.00
• Carrycot RRP: £175.00
• PIP Convertor Kit RRP: £110.00
• Newborn Nest RRP: 95.00
• Luxury Flavour Footmuff RRP: £80.00
• Palm Sunshade RRP: £35.00
• Pushchair Travel Bag RRP: £80.00
• Carrycot Travel Bag RRP: £40.00
• Cup Holder RRP: £15.00
• Cup Holder Clamp RRP: £5.00
• Rear Air Tyres and Pump RRP: £50.00
• Main Car Seat Adaptors RRP: £30.00
• Lower Car Seat Adaptors RRP: £30.00
Available Colours (Flavours)
Aniseed, Chilli, Cassis, Raspberry Blue, Papaya, Cookie, Caviar
iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review: Chassis
The second generation of the iCandy Apple 2 Pear sees a raft of improvements. Starting with the chassis itself, the Apple 2 Pear has shed 40% of its original weight dropping its overall weight down to 9.7kgs (without the seat).
The chassis is now finished in brushed silver aluminium with black plastics and it looks fabulous. At first glance, it looks big. This is because in single mode there is so much space between the seat and the basket as the seat sits up high on the chassis.
One thing is for sure, the basket access is simply awesome! Big access helps as the basket is now 11% bigger so you can place loads more stuff in it. It actually measures 50cm x 35cm x 20cm at its widest and deepest points. You could easily place 3 full shopping bags in there and still have room for more. It is rated at 5kg though. Of course this extra space is all but wiped out when the second seat is added – more on this later.
The wheels on the iCandy Apple 2 Pear have been updated and now have a much more modern look. The rears are now EVA (they were air tyres) and measure 28cm and the fronts are 18cm and EVA as before. Each wheel has independent suspension and the fronts are also lockable by way of a twist lock located on the rear of the front wheel upright.
In our previous Apple 2 Pear review, we picked up on the rather rudimentary, but very functional brake mechanism. I am afraid that this still exists. The design works well, but you are saddled with a rather ungainly black brake bar that spans the back of the pushchair. I guess that there is a – 'if it ‘aint broke don't fix' it mantra here, but we would still love to see a more elegant design.
Lastly the handle deserves a special mention, if you are tiny or a giant you will be able to find a comfortable height. The adjustment range is huge! At the lowest setting, the handle is 95cm from the ground. At its highest it is 111cm. This is a serious range of adjustment allowing anyone to find a comfortable position. I should also mention that bringing the handle up and consequently back will also make space for your feet when you are in tandem mode.
The updates that the Apple 2 Pear chassis has received really make a difference. The lighter weight and bigger basket are of course the standout features, but one cannot ignore the new brushed aluminium finish and the EVA wheels.
iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review: Seats
iCandy have not missed the chance to update the Apple 2 Pear's seat units.
Firstly, there are 7 brand new colours available as flavour packs. The flavour pack must be bought when you buy the pushchair which does add to initial outlay, but if you don't by one you will have no hood! The upside of this is, you can change the look of your pushchair by simply purchasing a new ‘Flavour'. Flavour packs are par for the course now as more manufacturers realise this is a good way to keep the RRP attractive and increase the potential of ad-on sales.
The seat unit itself is now slimmer and slicker in appearance. Oddly, it does not feature a bumper bar. We think this is quite an omission. Children love to rest their arms on bumper bars and some may even find the extra security of having something between them and the pavement reassuring. Most of you will probably be looking at it and saying it looks weird and many will feel that placing their child into a seat without a bumper bar could be a little tricky as they squirm and try to escape. Either way, I think iCandy should have added the option even if the actual bumper bar was sold as an accessory.
On its own, the seat has a 3 position recline which is operated by pressing the two grey buttons on either side of the seat mounting point. These two buttons are also used to remove the seat. In single mode the seat can be forward or rear facing.
The hood (purchased separately as the flavour pack) is made from high quality double lined fabric – it feels excellent. When you purchase the flavour pack, you also receive the hood frame, making swapping colours a doddle as you simply un-plug the old hood and pop on a new one. There are no fancy pockets or extra zips, just a simple stitched iCandy logo and de-rigeur pull out peak extension.
iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review: Newborn Nest and Carrycot
The standard seat on the Apple 2 Pear can be converted to be used by a newborn with the addition of the Newborn Nest available for £95 as an accessory. The Nest uses the seat frame to create the ‘rim' of a carrycot. The nest itself is like a shallower version of a carrycot utilising the seats hood. With the addition of an apron, the nest is complete. It should be noted that the nest is not designed to be removed from the pushchair and placed on the floor with your child in it.
Of course if you would prefer, iCandy have a full sized carrycot available. This is a very sturdy affair weighing in at 6 kilos. The substantial hood doubles as the handle and with the apron, provides ample protection from the worst of the weather. Of course if it gets a little wet, the rain cover will come in handy and that is simple to fit covering the entire carrycot.
Room for Two:
The big deal about the Apple 2 Pear is that it converts into a pushchair for two on the footprint of a pushchair for one. In order to do this, you will need to purchase a PIP convertor kit. This comprises of a second seat, additional front seat extenders and rear seat mounts, oh and don't forget you will need a colour pack as well... And if you have a newborn you will need a newborn nest as the carrycot does not combine with a second seat.
Once you have everything you need, adding the extra seat is very simple taking just seconds to install the adaptors. It is pretty foolproof too.
One last point. If you have twins, the Apple 2 Pear can support two car seats.
iCandy list 15 different combinations or car seats, newborn nests and regular seats. You can be sure to find a seating combination that suits (some options shown below).
Concentrating on the two seats, when in tandem mode (with the PIP convertors in place), both seats must be installed world facing. The top seat now has 2 recline positions, but the bottom seat still retains 3. The gap between the two seats is actually quite respectable with the wide chassis giving an airy feel. I think any child would be happy to travel in either seat.
iCandy have taken their first Apple 2 Pear product and carefully improved the seating which now provides a clever comfortable environment for children large and small. The airy feel of the second seat will no doubt prove the deciding factor for some.
iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review: Fold
Folding the Apple 2 Pear is a doddle and can even be done with both seats in place after which it free stands. Let's give it a go!
First you must prepare the rear seat for folding by altering its recline position. The rear seat must be reclined past horizontal so that the back of the seat is lower than the front. To do this, locate a red safety catch on the right hand side of the lower seat – its near the seat recline button, press in the grey button and at same time flip the safety catch, the seat will now recline back past horizontal. Now you can fold the chassis. Grab the grey button in the centre of the handle and pull it in, slide the handle down and press the button on the left hand side where the handle slides into the chassis. Now, as the handle hits the bottom, the chassis will collapse. Lift up the front to stand the folded pushchair vertical.
With both seats on, it is not what you would call a compact fold, but it would be good for just getting it out of the way on occasion. Of course the most compact way of folding is to remove both seats and pip convertors, something which takes seconds. With this done, the chassis folds quickly in the same fashion.
The only thing we miss is a chassis autolock. iCandy have included a manual strap, but this becomes a little bit of a faff to get on and off and, if you don't remember to flip it back in the basket when you take it off, it can get tangled in the brake as ours did. It probably won't get used by most after the first few goes.
iCandy Apple 2 Pear Review: Conclusion
Evolution is almost always a good thing and so this proves with the Apple 2 Pear. The reduction in weight and styling update have produced a great looking very usable single/tandem pushchair.
I am not convinced by the removal of the bumper bar on the
seats and I still think that there should be a better solution for the chassis
lock, but these are issues that are not insurmountable.
The tandem seating is well designed and provides plenty of airy space for your children. When the second seat is not in use, the basket is simply huge!!
It may be a bit expensive to have to buy all the extras to create the pushchair that suits your needs, but that is the point. You can create a pushchair that suits your needs and a very good one at that. iCandy is a very desirable brand at the moment and the resale value is testament to that, you can be sure when you come to sell you will get a good portion of your original investment back. If you are looking for a single to double solution, or even just a very good double, the Apple 2 Pear should be on your list!
We give the iCandy Apple 2 Pear 4.5 out of 5 stars.