Spotlight Product Review: Maclaren Techno XT

TechnoXT pic Spotlight Product Review:  Maclaren Techno XTSometimes the first is really the best, and so it is with Maclaren. The Scottish founder of the company, an aeronautical engineer named Owen Maclaren, invented the very first umbrella stroller in 1965 after his daughter complained about the weight and size of her baby buggy. Maclaren used his knowledge of airplane manifolds to build a light-weight, aluminum frame that could fold compactly and still possess great load-bearing capabilities. In the last 50 years, almost every stroller company on the planet has borrowed from Maclaren’s design, but the company still produces the best umbrella strollers ever made.

The Techno XT is one of Maclaren’s top of the line umbrella strollers.  It is one step down from their Techno XLR model.

The seat sports a 5-point, adjustable harness with a fabulous buckle that is easy for mom but very hard for the child to do.  You have to squeeze the button on the front AND the back of the buckle to open. Our mischievous 3 year old couldn’t undo the buckle so had no choice but to stay seated.  We love that!  This is not a wimpy harness either – it is thick and strong to keep your baby in place.

We found the seat to be very roomy measuring 13” wide. The seatback isn’t the tallest with an 18” measurement but with 26” from seatback to canopy, our taller children fit with no problem. These seats are definitely going to grow with your child.  Have an extra tall child?  The canopy slides up the frame to give even more headroom!  If you slide the canopy up, you will have up to 30 inches from seatback to canopy!  That would accommodate a freakishly tall child!  The seat has a high weight capacity of 55 lbs.

The seat has 4 recline positions including just shy of flat which is perfect for a newborn.  Note:  The Techno XT does not accommodate an infant car seat. The XLR (the model up from the XT) does accept an infant seat though if that is what you are looking for.

Other thoughtful seat features an adjustable leg rest that has two positions (up and down) and removable, washable seat fabric.   There is no baby or parent tray on the Techno XT but you can purchase the Maclaren Universal Organizer that will hold all your baby and parent essentials and two bottles.

We love that the two ergonomic handles are taller than most umbrella strollers at 42” from the ground giving both taller and shorter moms and dads a comfortable push without fear of kicking the rear wheels and eliminating the dreaded stroller hunch.  And what’s better yet is that the handles telescope out to give almost two additional inches of height to 44” for the tallest parents!

The Techno XT has a fabulous canopy that slides up the frame to adjust to accommodate the angle of the sun or give your little rider more headroom.  Plus, new for 2010, is that the canopy unzips in the back to reveal an additional canopy panel (with side air vents) to allow you to fold it down in front of the child to really protect them from the sun and elements.  And that’s not it!  The canopy also has a UV protected sun visor that flips down and gives 10 extra inches of sun coverage.  You can also unsnap the back of the canopy and roll it up to open up the seat and allow air to circulate through to keep your child extra cool.  The seat also has a very large viewing window (also known as a peek a boo window) on the back of the seats instead of on top of the canopy in an effort to keep the sun out of the baby’s eyes.  The sun canopy is water resistant and a handy rain cover is included.

There is a medium sized basket underneath the stroller.  The basket will hold a medium diaper bag or baby essentials.  It’s not the biggest basket on the market but is large for an umbrella stroller.  Also, the basket can be tricky to access if the seat is fully reclined.  There are also two long elastic pockets to hold the rain cover & mosquito net perfectly or for parent’ and baby’s essentials.  The long shape holds bottles perfectly.

The Techno XT has an umbrella fold that is easy to do with basically just your foot. It folds easily and locks closed with an automatic lock. (Note:  Like on many strollers, the basket has to be empty to fold.)   There is even a carry handle on the side that makes transporting and traveling with this stroller a breeze. Opening the stroller is just as simple as the fold. Unlock the lock, lift up the handles, and step down on the small rear footplate to open. Easy as that!

So, it sounds like a great stroller so far, right? But how is the maneuverability, you ask? Absolutely fabulous! We found this stroller to glide along the pavement and smooth surfaces, easily turning on a dime with one hand. It has four 6 inch hard, rubber tires that allow us to hop curbs with ease and navigate bumpy streets, but like any umbrella stroller, you can’t go jogging or off-roading with it.  The front tires do lock straight for some rougher terrain though.

I put the stroller to the test when I arrived late at the airport one day with rolling luggage and an 8 month old.  I literally did a “Home Alone” run through the airport pulling luggage with one arm and maneuvering the Techno XT through the crowds with the other hand.  The stroller performed wonderfully!  I was able to zip the stroller around people with ease.  With the front and rear suspension, my little rider had a smooth ride even with all the chaos.  And since the stroller is solidly built, I didn’t feel like it was about to fall apart during my airport journey.  There are individual brakes on the rear wheels to lock the stroller into place and all the wheels sport reflective hubcaps new for 2010. And if you want to use the stroller at night or dusk, the stroller sports lots of reflective accents for safety.

The Techno XT holds up to a whopping 55 pounds (that’s a third grader!) and weighs in at 17 pounds. It’s not the lightest umbrella stroller on the market, but Maclarens are unsurpassed in maneuverability and steering. We could basically steer the Techno XT with our pinkie.

You can purchase additional accessories for your Techno XT including a mosquito net, a carry bag, a universal organizer, sun parasol, universal comfort packs, and diaper bag.

There are two color options with the Techno XT:  black on black frame or charcoal on silver frame.  If you want to add a little color to your XT, you must check out their wide variety of fabulous reversible seat liners!  The seat liners are available in everything from a shearing liner that is perfect for winter to eco-friendly liners made from recycled poly bamboo to all kinds of different patterns and solid colors.

If you are curious, the difference between the Maclaren Techno XT and the XLR is:  the XLR is a couple pounds heavier, has a larger seat that can accommodate larger children up to 65 pounds and can accept an infant car seat to make it a travel system.

The Maclaren Techno XT is a full featured umbrella stroller with a large seat, gigantic canopy and fabulous maneuverability.

To watch my full video review of the Maclaren Techno XT, click the video below:

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Comments

  1. Michelle says

    Thanks!,do the xt and xlr have the same wheels?
    Also, btwn this stroller and the chicco lightway, which do you recommend for lots of daily walking on bumpy sidewalks? I’m looking for a smooth ride, durability, powerful wheels, and lightweight.
    Thank you!

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