Bugaboo Donkey Review
Sturdy and chunky and you get a double or a single pushchair in one package
The Bugaboo Donkey is as strong and chunky as its name suggests and it has all the functionality of a single pushchair – plus you can convert it to a double with just a few clicks. Best of all, you can have one or two carrycots, seat units or car seats on the chassis, or any combination of those. Twins? No problem, start at birth with two carrycots or car seats, then change to the seat units when the children are older. A toddler and a new baby? One seat unit plus a carrycot or car seat will do the trick. And if you sometimes take out one child and at other times two (for example if the older one is at playgroup), you can take off the second seat or carrycot, close up the chassis and you have a single which is great for nipping around the shops.
The seat unit is roomy and well balanced on the chassis and it has three recline positions; upright, flat and halfway between, which you can adjust really easily using the white lever on the rear of the top of the seat. Each seat can be placed on the chassis forwards or rearwards facing. Next to the seat is a basket or pannier which will hold quite a lot of items, especially heavy and bulky shopping items. This is a great addition to the basket underneath and means you don’t have to try to hang carrier bags on the chassis. The seats have a black base and you can add colour with a fabric pack which also includes the hood and apron. The bumper bar can be removed by pressing the white buttons on either side and you can also use the bumper bar as a handle when you’re taking the seat on or off the chassis.
The roomy carrycot uses the base frame of the seat unit, meaking it a more interchangeable product, and comes with black fabrics on the base. Again, you can personlaise the carryoct as you can the seat unit with a fabric pack.
Chassis: The chassis has to be large and sturdy as it needs to be able to take the weight of two large toddlers, so it was never going to be lightweight. But being a long-lasting chassis that won’t buckle is much more important than being able to sling it over your shoulder, especially if you get lots of use out of a pushchair. The chassis is curved and attractive to look at and is made from brushed steel with black highlights. The rear wheels and chassis bar can be adjusted to be the only wheels on the ground, so that if you are pulling the pushchair across sand or snow, it is much easier. The chassis also almost doubles in width so that you can swap from one seat and the pannier to two seats – or any combination of seats, carrycots and car seats, as mentioned above. All parts that have a function are white – the clips to change it from single to double and the clips to unlock the carrycots from the frame for example – and these tie in nicely to the wheels with their white accents. The fabric can be taken off for washing, so it will stay looking really fresh and the harness is adjustable, with a very easy solution for how you adjust it.
Folding is relatively easy; it makes a more compact fold if you remove the seat or carrycot first though it’s not strictly necessary. Lock the chassis with the brake, then unclip the buttons at the side of the adjustable handle down to the lowest position and lock again. Next, there are two white buttons on either side of the frame, one with a button that you depress with a thumb. Press those and the chassis collapses down and will satnd alone. For a more compact folded size you could remove the wheels, too.
Wheels: The wheels are large and chunky too with a great white-wall-tyre look that really stands out from the crowd. The larger wheels at the back are really big and the front wheels not much smaller, so the smoothness of the ride is exemplary.
Extras: You can of course add a ride-on board to your package, so that if you decide to travel a little more lightly, the toddler can ride and walk in turns while the baby rides in the seat. There’s also a sturdy travel bacg, meaning you can pack up your Donkey and put it on a plane, so you can be sure you have your pushchair with you at the other end of your flight. You can also buy a Runner chassis to use with your seat unit or carrycot if you want to be able to run with your pushchair, though this is a single stroller. Also available are a blanker, seat liner, mattress cover, cup holder, footmuffs, bags, a snack tray and organiser, mosquito net and parasol.
The Small Print:
- Used from: birth to 15 kg
- Weight: 15 kg (in duo mode)
- Seat reclines: three
- Size when folded: 87 x 60 x 40 cm
Car seat: takes one or two Maxi-Cosi Pebble or Cabriofix car seats