Mia Moda Atmosferra Stroller: Rear-Facing For Less

11/07/2008 at 07:00 AM ET

If you love the look of a reversible stroller but they leave you with some serious sticker shock, consider the Mia Moda Atmosferra. At $300, it costs roughly half that of comparable reversible strollers with similar features, and that means you can rock the look you love for much, much less.

The Atmosferra is a sturdy, sophisticated, full-size stroller suitable for a variety of terrains. I’ve used it at the mall as well as on the uneven sidewalks around our home, and have been impressed not only with the smooth ride, but also with how effortless it is to push. Front-swivel wheels make the Atmosferra easy to steer with just one hand. The seat is wide and long, including an adjustable calf support, ensuring a comfortable fit for our almost 2-year-old son. A five point harness keeps him from escaping, and there are three recline positions for those (increasingly rare!) times he catches a nap while we’re strolling.

The best part? Reversing the seat is a snap! Simply pull up on two little levers on either side, and it pops right off; turn it around, and lower the seat into the receiver points on the stroller frame. You can switch baby’s direction in — literally — a second or two. This feature has been a life saver for me with my feisty toddler, who tends to want everything he sees when we’re out and about. If we’re going somewhere particularly tantrum-inducing, I have him rear-face so that he’s focused on me and not his surroundings. It also helps me anticipate any upcoming trouble spots (hello, toy store!) and kick into must-distract-baby mode. Rear-facing strollers are also great for little ones who might become overwhelmed in crowded settings and need to see a familiar face in order to feel secure.

Click ‘more’ to read about the Atmosferra’s fold and why it has the best parent cup around.

Other ‘extras’ I love about the Atmosferra include a removable child tray with cup holder, the parent cup holder — with really innovative stretchy sides so that it keeps even thin bottles from wobbling around or falling overboard — and a height-adjustable handle that easily accommodates parents of all sizes. The basket is ample, and is even more wide open when the seat is set to rear-facing. It easily fits a diaper bag and even a shopping bag or two.

The Atmosferra takes up considerable space in my car when folded. The stroller doesn’t collapse in on itself; Instead, it folds upwards and stays the same height as when it was open, i.e., for packing purposes, the stroller gets flatter — but not shorter. That said, what I do like about the folded Atmosferra is its ability to stand upright. So while it might be somewhat unwieldy to get in and out of the trunk of a car it is very easy to store in our house, and more often than not I just leave it standing in our coat closet. Like most full-sized strollers, the fold is somewhat involved — but once you get the hang of it, it is done in seconds.

The Atmosferra is my new go-to stroller, without question. While rear-facing continues to be all the rage, not many of us can afford to spend upwards of $1,000 on a piece of baby gear. I love that this stroller gets me there at a price I can live with.

— Missy

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john on

i think this is the stroller for me but my question is – does it fit into a mid size car trunk or do i need an suv?