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I have owned my maxi cosi Noa for about a year now and have put it through it's paces in a variety of places and situations.
Starting at the beginning, in the box you will find the stroller (fully assembled) a rain cover, a parasol attachment clip and an instruction manual. I had a brief read of the manual and it was pretty self explanatory. So far, so good! To unfold the stroller you simply press the button on the right handle and lift up the frame towards you, this can easily be done one-handed, then simply pull up the tensioning bar between the handles and you are ready to go. Unfolding this stroller one handed is so simple I have managed it whilst also holding a tantruming toddler under the other arm!
So, stroller unfolded I was ready to try strapping my toddler in. Now, my toddler at 94cm was a pretty tall 2 year old and yet she fitted comfortably in the seat with room to spare. The height of the seat itself is 51cm and the width 21cm. The straps themselves have chest pads for comfort and - here's the best bit - each strap can be clicked into the buckle individually, think tantruming toddler again and you'll understand the benefit of that! To undo the buckle simply press the burton and remove each side.
With my toddler safely strapped in I decided to road test the noa up and down the street. The first thing I struggled a little with was getting it down the step out of the back door. Because of the folding mechanism the noa sits very low to the ground and the little wheels (12cm) are not capable of bumping up or down kerbs. There is a definite knack to getting up and down any steps higher than your average kerbstone but it's not an insurmountable issue. Once safely down the step I was really impressed with how smooth the noa was to push and the wheels, though small, are very manoeuvres it "turns on a sixpence" as my mum would say. Applying the brake is very simple too, press your foot on the red pedal on the right and the brake is on, press the grey pedal on the left to release. It is advertised as a flip flop friendly brake and it really is :0)
The recline mechanism is not really a mechanism per se it is in fact a zip. You simply unzip either side of the seat at the back and the seat reclines slightly. It does not lie flat or anything remotely approaching flat but is fine for a toddler that has nodded off whilst out and about.
The hood does not detach from the frame and because of the way the stroller folds over it ha to be made of a very flexible fabric. If you are familiar with the maxi cosi cabrio infant car seat it has the same canopy fabric. It is fine and does the job of providing some protection from sun/wind/rain but it isn't very robust and mine had snagged in the first week when I dropped the door keys into the top if it on the school run.
The noa is unlike other strollers in that it does not have an umbrella fold, instead it folds in half and forms a cuboid kind of shape. Once folded it's dimensions are 67.5 x 35 x 35cm - small enough to fit nearly into the footwell of my car, very handy when packing the car up for holiday! It certainly takes up very little room in the utility when not in use. To fold the stroller, you squeeze and release the tension bar between the handles press the button on the right handle in and simple push the handles down towards the front wheels. Again this can, and has, be done on the bus with a toddler under the other arm and bags full of shopping. A unique feature of the noa is the pulling handle. When folded there is a telescopic handle between the wheels and handles you push the button and pull the handle up slightly tip the stroller towards you and pull along on the back wheels. A very handy feature when you have folded it on the bus and only need to walk a little wa to the car at the perk and ride, for example.
I have only used the raincover once to try it out as my daughter hates them so we have a stroller rain poncho instead. It is easy enough to attach and does the job and can be stored in the under stroller basket when not in use. The stroller will fold with the raincover in the basket too.
The under stroller basket is a reasonable size for a stroller but it is awkward to fit anything in it as the fold mechanism does take up a lot of space. That said I have managed to get two lunch bags and two coats and school jumpers under there with a bit of pushing and cajoling. I wouldn't recommend this stroller if you really need the basket on a regular basis though. Because it is so lightweight (only 7kg) you can't hang much in the way of bags on the handles - not really recommended with any stroller of course but everybody does it.
I have found it a dream to push but my husband finds the handle height too low and it is not adjustable. I am only 5ft 4 and my husband 5ft 11 - I wouldn't recommend for tall people as you would probably end up with backache.
I have road tested this stroller on buses, trains, cars, aeroplanes and ferries and it has been fantastic. It is manoeuvrable enough to fit through tight spaces, folds quickly and simply to a neat small size and unfolds again in a flash. It fits in a car footwell when the boot is full of holiday paraphernalia.
So, to sum up if you are after a stylish, neat stroller which is good for travelling I can not recommend this highly enough. If you need to fit your shopping underneath regularly or are fairly tall I would not recommend the noa to you.
When you're out and about, enjoying your day with your toddler, you'll need a buggy that's easy to use and that overcomes any obstacle. The Maxi-Cosi Noa is an incredibly practical buggy. Easy to manoeuvre with four small wheels and front suspension, the Maxi-Cosi Noa is especially designed to be strong yet lightweight and very compact and folds and unfolds in a flash - using only one hand! When folded it remains upright for easy storage and can be pulled easily, thanks to its unique retractable handle. Comfort comes as standard with a two-position reclining seat and a shopping basket. The Maxi-Cosi Noa is so easy to handle, its child's play! Features Suitable From 3 Months - 3½ years (maximum weight 15 kg) Light and highly compact buggy Very easy one hand folding and unfolding Very manoeuvrable Trolley function to facilitate its transport