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My son had been asking for a double Decker bus from cars 2 since the film came out so at Christmas we finally gave in and purchased it from Tesco for him. You can buy a small diecast version but we went for the storage version which is larger and costs a little more but as he actually has over 100 cars from the first and second movie we thought this would be a fun addition.
It resembles the character from the movie perfectly with the same stickers on the side of the bus, strange eyes the whole appearance is identical so of course it is instantly recognisable to any cars fan. It is bright red and has the same number and destination written on it as the bus on the film everything is identical.
It has a lift up top that stays attached to the bottom of the bus but opens up on hinges to reveal the bottom of the bus where there are 4 spaces for the cars to sit. The top deck is open so you can easily place the cars in and out of the top of the bus which has spaces for 3 cars. Each space is shaped in a v shape to hold the vehicles in place as you push the bus around.
Also on the top deck is a ramp this leads down to doors at the bottom which open when you push them so when you push the cars down the ramp they roll down and come flying out the doors. This is the part of the bus which makes it a little bit different from other storage containers we own we have a Mack truck but that simply holds the cars and you can load them on and off but that is it where as this can be used for play as well as storage which I think is great and so do my boys.
The whole toy is made out of plastic it is light but really durable and rather thick meaning it is nice and bulky but the open widows allow for somewhere for little one to grip while pushing it around. The hinges on the bus to lift the top are really well made and work really well without any difficulty and the hinges on the doors that lets the car out are also well made leading to no problems with them opening and closing.
It has movable wheels that move freely on both carpeted floors and wooden flooring so it can be easily pushed around by little one with no problems at all. This means it is not only a storage box but a vehicle in itself giving it a little more value than a lot of other car carries we have had.
To open the top of the bus you simply push to clips to each side and then the lid flips up there is no danger of little one catching their fingers and when you close it the top moves slow enough for little one not to get their fingers caught.
As the top of the bus is open it is very easy to use the ramp and stores the vehicles in the spaces provided even for little hands there are no fiddly bits and the cars can be easily placed in pretty much anyway and they will sit right in the space.
The ramp again is wide enough and has enough space for the cars to be placed on easily and there is not much little one needs to do as soon as you place the car at the top of the ramp it shoots down and comes crashing through the door. There is nothing to obstruct the cars and we have never had a problem with one getting stuck the die cast vehicles fit this toy and the larger shake and go cars will not even sit on the top of the ramp so no way little one can get them stuck although my sons have tried.
The doors of the bus open and close by themselves I was a little worried that the constant bashing by the cars would weaken them and they may break but 5 months in they are still going strong and still open and close as easily as they did when we first purchased the bus.
The windows and open top of the bus mean that you can see the cars sitting in their storage space from the outside which my boys find hilarious they love to tell me time and time again who they can see on the bus, they often swap characters round and then continue to tell me who has flew down the ramp and who has then boarded the bus and where they are going so it is great for imagination.
Well personally I think it is great for the price we paid you do not receive any cars with it and these can retail at £5 each so even though the bus only holds 7 cars in total to completely fill the spaces it can be rather costly we already have a lot of the cars from collecting them from the first movie so we had the accessories to go with it.
The bus is not just a handy storage container but also a great toy itself it is well made and has lasted a lot of play from both my sons without showing any signs of wear and tear. This toy is recommended from age 3 plus and I can understand why the clips are difficult for my younger son to open and he is only 23 months old but other than that he is fully able to play with this independently. Both my youngest son and my oldest love this toy they love loading different cars in to the seats and taking them out again to push out of the ramp.
You do have to lift the top to get to the cars on the bottom level meaning it can be rather time consuming as clicking the top level into place only take a few seconds and is very easy to do but doing this over and over I thought would bore the boys but actually it just increases the fun for them.
Although it is a simple toy and really repetitive my boys never seem to get bored and this gets played with at least once every single day. The durable plastic means the toy is really well made but still light enough to be used easily by them both. It encourages fine motor skills by placing the cars in and out of the holding places and by pushing them to the top of the ramp. Also my sons like to count how many cars they can fit in the bus and although there are 7 seats you can put more in they just rattle around the bus while it is being pushed around.
Usually I would have an area for negatives but in all honesty we have yet to find any I suppose for storage unit 7 cars may be a little low but as it redeems itself by also being a fully functional toy this does not matter one bit.
This is a fantastic toy for any cars mad little boy or even if they are not a fan of the film the toy itself is simple yet fun and I am sure any child would love it. This retails between £10-£20 which for a Disney cars franchise for the size and use of the toy I feel this is rather in expensive compared to the other toys in the range.
We got this bus carry case the other week in Tesco. We normally do our grocery shopping online but when we go in person we let the children come to the toy section and choose something each. My 2 year old was instantly attracted to this Cars 2 bus and would not entertain the idea of choosing anything else other than this. He was really desperate for it so I said okay, this can be his choice of toy.
However I do feel quite disappointed with it. It did not have a price label on it but my husband said it scanned through at 20 pounds which is really not worth it at all! Although I have had a look and it is cheaper on amazon at around 10 pounds which is slightly more reasonable.
We have had other toys from the Cars and Cars 2 range which I have been happy with, such as the small die cast cars which all seem well made and a good quality so I was feeling fairly confident that this bus would be okay however I just feel it is very flimsy and weak. It feels quite brittle and not like it can withstand a huge amount of play or rough manhandling from toddlers.
It is supposed to be a carry case for the cars diecast vehicles so it opens up, by flipping the top deck of the bus open and it has 2 catches on the side so that it can be locked closed. My 2 year old has found it a bit frustrating though that sometimes it just opens by mistake when he is trying to carry it around the house.
The inside has a slide where you put the cars and then they shoot out of the door of the bus, which is quite fun. This aspect of the bus is okay and probably the best thing about it.
I can not really see an orderly way of keeping the cars inside, even though it is supposed to be a carry case. My boy tends to just shove them all in, in a disorganised type of way. It can fit a fair amount of things inside but not a huge amount, I think you would get about 10-12 die cast vehicles in it.
The decorations on the bus, such as the advertisement shown on the side of the bus, are done by stickers and unfortunately a part of ours has been ripped off already which I was not too impressed with.
I just don't feel it is a really well made, well lasting toy and I did expect better from the Cars brand as their diecast vehicles are quite good.
To compare it with the other diecast carry case we have already, which is the Wilson Chuggington one I would have to say this one is quite a lot more flimsy.
However my son does like it and he was very happy with it, so although I do not really rate it much it has kept him happy so I suppose that is something! But I would not really recommend it to others.