The makers of the now-legendary Vista travel system bring us its compact little brother, designed to make everyday family life quick and simple - the MINU.
Masters at producing the perfect all-purpose travel system in the form of the Vista, UPPAbaby have now added a convenient everyday stroller to their family too. The cutely named MINU has been designed to accompany you on your daily adventures and, though it is lightweight and small, has been made to slip into modern life seamlessly.
What's in the box?• Stroller
• Weight: 6.7kg
• Open size: 52x29.2x104.1cm
• Folded size: 52x71.1x58.4cm
• Suitability: From 6 months - 15kg (from birth when used with From Birth Kit accessory pack)
• Carry-All Parent Organizer
• Cozy Ganoosh
• Stroller Rain Shield
• MINU Travel Bag
• Adapters for Maxi-Cosi, Nuna and Cybex infant carriers
• From Birth Kit
• From Birth Kit Rain Shield
The UPPAbaby MINU is available in three colours:
Jake (black melange with black chassis), Jordan (grey melange with aluminium chassis) and Ryan (teal melange with aluminium chassis).
Out of the neat box pops an even neater little stroller, tucked away in its very own drawstring storage bag. As far as assembly goes, all you need to do is pop the wheels on (very straightforward) and then add the hood, which also takes a matter of seconds. The easy assembly of the MINU gave us a taster of the convenience of this little travel companion.
Another notable point we discovered when lifting the MINU out of its box is its weight. It is very light indeed but still retains a definite sense of substance. All the joints on the chassis and all components are rock solid with no play in them whatsoever.
When assembled, this punchy little stroller is really something to feast your eyes upon. It is a beautiful shape with a very clever curve to the handlebar so that it sits at the perfect angle and height for most drivers. The handle is also beautifully covered in 100% full-grain leather which is hand-sewn onto the pushchair. This not only gives that extra buzz of UPPAbaby quality but we found it so comfortable in our palms, especially if we were pushing for long periods of time like on day trips.
The wheels are small but give the smoothest of rides. In fact, we're hard pushed to name a stroller that gives a smoother ride than the MINU. Even over gravel and grass the wheels managed wonderfully well, perhaps thanks to the suspension that is featured on all four wheels as well as the great quality tyre material, which is more rubber than plastic. We also loved the fact that this stroller is fab at weaving through shopping malls and in and out of gangways on public transport.
The brake is a push-button brake system operated by foot. There are two brake buttons (cleverly colour-coded), one on each side of the rear wheel chassis. The button next to the left wheel is green, which you press to release the brake. The button next to the right wheel is red, which you press to engage it. This can be slightly confusing to start with but we soon got to grips with the pedals after using the pushchair a few times, and the brake was certainly reliable and rock-steady on every occasion.
Small folding strollers often compromise on basket space but this is not the case at all here. The basket space is more of an open-ended luggage compartment with high mesh sides. It's great as it is easily accessible from front and back and the sides keep everything in place. During park trips we could easily pile coats, jumpers, hats, nappies, wipes and snacks in there, and when shopping we got all the weekly essentials underneath too. Whether you are using the MINU daily for shopping and days out or if you are taking it on holiday, this is definitely a storage space that is designed to be used!
There is still the option to use the MINU from birth with the addition of the From Birth Kit, which is in essence a soft bassinet. You need to remove the seat from the frame and store it away safely, and replace those fabrics with the bassinet in the From Birth Kit. There is a lovely mattress in there and the materials are lovely and soft and welcoming for a newborn. This definitely provides a cosy and sheltered space for your tiny ones to nestle during their first few months.
Rather brilliantly, the MINU still folds with the From Birth Kit in place too. There are very few pushchairs that do this, let alone compact strollers.
The seat harness is a five-point harness and can be altered in size by using the sliders on the shoulder and waist straps. You can also change the height as your child grows by threading the harness through the slots on the back of the seat unit - all of which is simple to do without breaking nails and pinching fingers!
The UPF50+ hood is great and if you are familiar with the VISTA travel system then you might recognise it as a miniature version of this hood, mainly due to the silver reflective pull-down visor, which gives super-safe shading on sunnier days. The large peek-a-boo window is also present in the top of the hood and gives a great view of baby thanks to its size. It closes with magnets so there is no ripping noise to wake your sleeping passenger! It may be a small touch but we also loved the clever lining of the hood on the inside of the pushchair - it's white and reflective, keeping your baby's space cool, and is also super-soft and strokable to make sure your little ones are as comfortable as can be.
On the back of a hood is also a great storage pouch. We used this a lot and found it very handy for essentials such as keys and phones when we were on quick trips and school runs.
If it is a travel system you are after and you are wondering if the MINU is car seat compatible, then the answer is yes! The car seat adapters for compatible brands are available from summer 2018, around the same time as the From Birth Kit, to be purchased as additional accessories.
The fold of the MINU sets it aside from many other strollers on the market. It folds down so neatly and to the perfect size for keeping in the corner of the boot of the car or in your hallway. We appreciated ‘reclaiming' our car boot space, leaving plenty of room for shopping and luggage. The compact measurements of the fold also mean that it should fit into most overhead lockers on planes but it is always best to check with your airline.
The fold requires minimum effort and has just one step to it. It is quick and simple to operate just by using the slide tab and button on the handlebar. The concertina effect fold is really clever and is all held in place with a small locking lever.
The easily visible and ergonomically placed carry handle is great for lifting the stroller when folded and in all honesty feels no different to picking up our usual crammed-full handbag! There is a shoulder carry strap too, for when you need both hands free to carry baby. Everything has been thought about in great detail with this stroller.
Unlocking is just as simple and requires a flick of the wrist to pop everything back into place. You do just need to remember to release the locking lever with your finger or thumb beforehand.
If you love the idea of a sturdy but stylish, compact but everyday stroller then the MINU should certainly be on your shortlist. It pretty much does everything that a full-sized travel system can do, just in a more compact and convenient package.
UPPAbaby has said that the MINU allows you to ‘Go where you want, how you want – there's nothing extra holding you back' and we would have to agree with them. We found the MINU a pleasure to use on a daily basis and it coped well with 'normal' family life over several surfaces. The large basket allowed us to take everything we needed with us on days out and the big, deep seat meant that our passengers were always comfortable too. We would have loved to see a flatter recline on the seat as this can be a useful feature for older babies and toddlers too. And of course if you want to use the MINU from birth then you will need to pay extra for the From Birth Kit. But overall the MINU offers parents exceptional quality. It is simple by the nature of its functions but effective and fuss-free to use.
We give the UPPAbaby MINU 5 out of 5 stars