I am not usually a Maclaren fan. Most of the time,I find them tippy and the sunshades are inadequate. I also didn’t see them a stroller for long walks. But boy was I wrong! It started when my friend and I went looking for a stroller for her two year old son. We loved the Mac Ryder when we saw it at a local Manhattan store. The sunshade was large, her son had plenty of room in it and the extendable leg rest was perfect. We were, however, very sad to learn that Maclaren stopped making them for 2007. The only Ryder the store had in stock was the floor model, but my friend didn’t want the floor model. So we started asking about other Maclaren products. The store owner recommended the new limited edition Owen Stroller (also by Maclaren) as a viable alternative to the Ryder. The Owen, named for Maclaren’s late founder, Owen Maclaren, is built on the frame of popular Mac Ryder.
Maclaren lent me an Owen to try for several days so I could test it out. While it’s not the most gorgeous Mac I’ve ever seen, but it handled very well and the suspension was excellent for long walks. It didn’t tip, either! No matter how much stuff I hung on it! The basket, while not huge, fit what I needed. The fold was simple and compact (typical umbrella). It is not the lightest Mac you can get, but it has some wonderful features that might make the mid-weight (14.8 lbs) of it all right.
Since it has a deep recline, you can use it from 3 months to 55 lbs. That is a great feature- they can literally take you from when your babe is an infant to when they are 4 or 5 (if your child still wants to ride occasionally). The seat has four recline positions, the footrest extends very easily for napping, the hood tilts and does a decent job of sun shielding – the window on top has 99% UV protection. Some kids will miss the lack of a snack tray, but you can always get a Snack Trap or a tether for that sippy cup. The Owen comes with a coordinating plaid foot muff (that was heavyweight) and rain shield.
I wasn’t wild about the dark blue and plaid colorway (yet it looks better than in person than online). Since Maclaren just changed their logo to honor their scottish roots, the plaid (with red, green and yellow stripes on a deep blue) on the Owen also honors the original Maclaren Clan Tartan. While that is a nice idea, I think the deep blue on its own would have been more attractive.
I really enjoyed using this stroller and it made me appreciate the versility of the Macs.I would recommend the Owen as a good everyday stroller (that you can also take those long walks with!) The retail price of the limited edition Owen is $325.
For more information, check out Maclarenbaby.com.