* Prices may differ from that shown
The MacLaren Major Elite is designed for older children who can't (or are reluctant to) walk far. Based on the standard MacLaren design, the Elite looks more like a big buggy than a wheelchair.
The stroller is marketed as being suitable from approximately two to eight years, although a two year old does look rather swamped by it. The maximum weight is 45kg, or 7st if you still work in old money like me.
One of the things I like best about the Elite is the seat position. Whilst it is fixed, the seat is quite high up which means that the user has a good view of the world around them and isn't simply staring at other people's knees the whole time.
The other main draw of the MacLaren Elite is that it is easy to collapse and lightweight to carry. The umbrella fold means that it takes up less space in a car boot than some other special needs buggies – although it won't fit in smaller boots due to its length.
Practical features of the stroller include a footrest that can rest at three fixed positions (this has to be removed to collapse the buggy), a five point harness and shoulder straps that can be attached at four different heights. Whilst lateral supports and a chest harness can be purchased, the MacLaren Major does not offer a great degree of postural support and there are alternative products that would be better if this is of concern.
The stroller has eight smallish wheels, making it suitable for towns and other urban spaces. It doesn't perform as well on uneven surfaces and gives a bumpy ride although, admittedly, my child quite enjoys this.
One of the main drawbacks with the Major Elite, in common with many other special needs buggies, is that it doesn't come with accessories such as a raincover or shopping basket as standard. Buying these is expensive and, in the case of the MacLaren, you have to additionally buy the suncover as the raincover attaches on to this. Attaching these is also quite fiddly.
Overall, this is a good product. The relatively light weight of the MacLaren Major is a real bonus if you need to get it in and out the car a lot or are pushing over long distances. From a cost perspective, it is also a lot more affordable than many other special needs buggies.
At a Glance This lightweight Maclaren stroller pushchair has been specially developed for children with special needs Features and benefits for Maclaren Major Elite Stroller - Designed for Children with Special Needs Basic Model, sturdily built, but lightweight with a square-section, aluminium chassis and 7" wheels to withstand years of rugged service Aluminium frame with hardwearing, easy clean fabric Swivel front wheels and square-grip handles A three position detachable footrest and brakes come as standard Five point harness ensures your child's safety More accessories are available separately 75kg (with footplate) Tested to 50kg Easily folded to 46" x 975" x 825" (117 x 25 x 21cm) Fully swivelling front wheels for easy manoeuvring Brakes on each rear wheel Positive-lock safety catches Supplied complete with detachable rigid footrest Free 1 year guarantee