Life after children need not be limiting. The Mountain Buggy Terrain is built to go anywhere, the only question is are you prepared to follow? Come and see for yourself....
Mountain Buggy has fared well in our testing so far, with the Urban Jungle scoring four-and-a-half stars out of five in its recent review. Hot on its heels into Pushchair Expert HQ is the Mountain Buggy Terrain.
This robust off-roader is meaty. It has an outdoorsy personality that compliments anyone who wears ‘North Face’ or ‘Merrell’. Like both of these brands, the Mountain Buggy Terrain is accessible on the high street but at the top of its game when it comes to performance.
What’s in the box
Mountain Buggy Terrain
The RRP of the Mountain Buggy Terrain is £565
The Terrain currently comes in Flint.
The frame..from the top
As soon as you grab the handle of the Terrain, you know it means business. The ridged, rubber covered handle allows the runner to sweat without losing a firm grip and can be positioned in one of thirteen angles to suit the height of the user. To make sure you don’t let your pushchair wander off without you during moments of distraction, there’s a safety strap on the handle that you simply slip over your wrist to eliminate mishaps.
Conveniently located in the centre of the handle is the hand brake. Using drum brakes, they slow the pushchair down but need a real squeeze to bring it to anywhere near a stop.
To come to a firm standstill, you must apply the foot brake which, although a vertically upright pedal, is relatively easy to apply but not comfortable to release – fine if you are wearing trainers, boots or wellies but not if you’re wearing flip-flops.
The majority of the frame is made from lightweight aluminium to keep the overall weight of the pushchair to a minimum of 13.5kg. As with the Urban Jungle, the apex of the frame, above the front wheel, is made of steel. The reason for this is to make it strong so that it can absorb the impact of everything from a rocky path to kerbstone without transferring the impact to your passenger. To keep it in pristine condition, this front axle is coated in five layers of powder coated paint (your car normally has two layers) which will protect it against the knocks of your everyday environment.
All three tyres are air filled, with large, reinforced, 16 inch wheels on the back and 12 inch on the front, together they make the ride really smooth. The front wheel is lockable in three positions; forward, backwards or swivel to suit your task in hand. Ingeniously on the front is a "fine tuner", allowing you to slightly alter the camber of the wheel in order to ensure a straight running line. True jogging enthusiasts run with one hand on the pushchair, meaning without this, your running line could be compromised.
Slung from the frame, reaching the full length of the wheel base, the basket is large and practical. It can take 5kg of weight and zips shut to stop everything bouncing out when you are running. It also has a handy zip pocket to stow all your shrapnel – keys, cash, phone etc.
The seat is wide and deep and would accommodate an older child. The details state it would take a child up to 35kg, approximately five-six years old, which may be stretching it slightly however there is definitely loads of room. Down the side of the seat are two storage pockets for stowing anything from a teething ring to a DS.
The seat is made from 600 denier polyester fabric that feels like the sort used in good quality all-weather jackets. Our sample in flint, uses two tones of grey, accented in black. Should you need to brush or sponge your seat, it can be easily removed from the frame via the poppers that affix it all the way around.
The well padded bumper bar is gate opening or removable via the clips on either side. The five point harness uses twist-and-slide technology which is now being rolled across the whole of the Mountain Buggy range. This allows the height of the straps to be adjusted simply and easily by sliding the strap to one of the three shoulder heights and twisting the lug to lock it off. Much better than having to re-thread the whole seat from the rear!
As with the Urban Jungle, the seat is completely enclosed when reclined creating a cosy, breeze-free sleeping environment. The apron of fabric unfortunately creates a halo around the top of the seat when fully vertical – not a problem for an infant but it would irritate a taller child, however a taller child will rarely be reclined so the fabric can be firmly tucked behind the seat back, out of the way.
The seat reclines via two straps; add some slack to recline and pull both straps tight to sit up. It’s not sophisticated or technical but works relatively well as they have used good quality tapes that slide easily.
The canopy is vast and includes a peephole window which can be secured open if required. It also boasts an extendable flip-out sun mesh and two side pockets for bits and bobs. Should the weather demand it, the open hood can click forward to maintain shade on your passenger.
The action buttons for the fold are located near the kick plate at the bottom of the seat. Undo the ‘safety’ catch then slide the buttons up resulting in the front wheel swinging underneath the seat. It’s simple to perform however you couldn’t call it compact! You need a big car to carry this around. On the plus side, it stands vertically when folded so is convenient to store. To lock it off, a strap that hangs from the top of the frame can be secured around the back axle so that it doesn’t yawn open when you try to pick it up.
I have been really impressed by the Mountain Buggy products. I thought they would be too utilitarian for my taste, but I’ve been won over by their basic but super-functional engineering.
The agility of the terrain makes it the perfect pushchair for anyone with outdoor tendencies; lock off the wheel and it has the gruffness to deal with stones, gravel, sand and inclines; switch it to swivel and it would also get you round the shops – you don’t have to go out and buy a separate stroller.
The overall look is one of security, quite masculine but pink is not a practical colour when you’re dealing with muddy footpaths. I love the netted basket, it’s large and it makes such good sense.
The only let down on the Terrain for me, is the jogger brake. The design uses drum brakes and requires a very firm pull on the brake lever to slow the beast - it won’t tame it entirely. If the brakes are not adjusted perfectly, it also has a tendency to pull one way or the other. The jogger drum brake system lacks the reassurance I would be looking for on an incline - especially when you apply extra weight such as shopping..
We give the Mountain Buggy Terrain
4 out of 5 stars