(Updated August 2018)
The Baby Jogger City Select “Lux” has been out for several months now. We generally like to give these new strollers time to be vetted before reviewing them —and that time has come!
- Price: Single ~ MSRP $629 (on sale $591); Doubles Kit ~ MSRP $199 (on sale $191)
- Price as Double: MSRP $828 (on sale $705)
- Stroller Weight: 28 lbs (single) and 34 lbs (double)
- Weight Limits: 45 lbs — each seat
Released in Spring of 2017, the new City Select Lux is Baby Jogger’s upgraded version of its ever-popular City Select double (convertible) stroller.
You can start by watching our video, which will give you some context for this review
Baby Jogger City Select Lux Review (video)
Just to recap, the “regular” City Select (review) is one of our top three favorite convertible strollers (those that start out as a single and convert to a double).
The regular City Select is the roomiest convertible on the market and has two identical seats that each hold up to 45 lbs. This is unique because most convertible strollers have a big seat and a little seat (what we jokingly refer to as “seating inequality”). Thus, it’s hugely popular with twin parents and those with children who are close in age. The Lux, however, is better for kids who are farther apart in age — or for parents who will want the option of the bench seat for when their oldest turns about 3.
If you are trying to choose between the regular City Select and the Lux, please start by reading the review of the regular.
To recap, a downside to the roominess is the loss of maneuverability. Because the stroller is so lonnnnng, it’s harder to steer and maneuver, especially if you’re dealing with any kind of hills. When Meg used this stroller in Piedmont (a town whose name literally means “foothills”), it was a bit of a nightmare, especially with a heavier kid up front. On flat terrain, however, it’s no problemo. Thus, we don’t recommend this stroller (either version) for those that live in very hilly neighborhoods.
The new Lux version starts at $629 ($591 on sale) for the single stroller (compared to $529 ($430 sale) for the regular City Select). A second seat costs an additional $199, and the optional bench seat goes for $90. You can also buy the whole shebang for $830.
You can purchase a bassinet for $109 (the stroller can alternatively take one or two car seats — great for twins!). Any other accessories (parent console, cupholder, belly bar, tote bag, car seat adapters) cost extra as well. Despite the Lux in the name, you don’t get any niceties, like a cup holder. This is a big complaint, but not uncommon for luxury strollers (for whatever reason).
Features of Both
There are several features that the regular City Select and the Lux share, which are listed here. We list the differentiating features of the Lux in the next section.
Both the City Select and the City Select Lux feature a telescoping handlebar that lengthens up to four inches (from 38.5” to 42.5” off the ground) with the push of a button. On the Lux, lengthening the handlebar helps you avoid kicking the footrest of the bench seat while you’re walking.
Note that reviewers who are on the shorter side complain that the shortest setting is still too high for them and can be hard on their back, so we don’t recommend this strollers for moms under 5’4″.
Both strollers’ seats feature UV 50+ sun canopies with magnetic peek-a-boo windows so you can spy on your children without their knowing ;). The original City Select’s peek-a-boo window is made of clear vinyl, whereas the Lux has a mesh window. The seats are (all) 21 inches tall, with another three-inch gap on top created by the canopy. On both strollers, the seats each hold up to 45 pounds of kid.
Though you won’t be adjusting the height of the harness on these seats very often, I found the height adjustment fairly difficult. It took me several tries to successfully cram the harness buckle through the slot in the back of the seat on the Lux.
Both models have a nice big basket underneath with easy access from the front, sides, and top—definitely enough to fit a full diaper bag plus a few other items.
The stroller seats have a mesh pocket in the back for storage (and the Lux has an additional zippered pocket up top). You’ll need to utilize these zippered pockets because it’s difficult to use a “handlebar” organizer with this stroller because of the placement of the hand brake (more on that in a sec).
The Shopping Tote (sold separately, $49) is a great option for your trips to the market. The tote can be attached to your stroller in 3 ways in the single or double position: either front or rear seat mounts, or on the back of the stroller. You can remove it, bring it inside, and unload your stuff — no more worrying about carrying reusable shopping bags around! It’s highly rated.
Both models have 12-inch “forever-air” rear tires (below) that do well on bumpier terrain. For comparison sake, jogging strollers have huge 16″ air-filled tires in the back, so these are “medium-large.” On both strollers, you can set the 8-inch front wheels to swivel for everyday strolling or to lock out for rolling over rough terrain.
The advantage to these tires over air-filled tires is that you never have to pump them up, which can be a huge pain, and they’ll never go flat (yes, it happens). Please note that this stroller is not intended for jogging, despite the (sometimes confusing) Baby Jogger brand name.
The Lux weighs 34 pounds as a double and 28 lbs as a single stroller. If you’re upgrading from a single stroller, you’ll find this stroller heavy, though it’s very comparable to other convertibles in its class (the Vista, the B-Ready, etc.) Note: the frame’s cross bar serves as a grab handle for lugging it around when folded.
The length of both strollers is fairly long (53” from back to front wheels). This doesn’t feel that long with the front seat facing forward, but when you turn the front seat around to face you, it feels preposterously long and hard to maneuver (that’s what she said?). The seat in the front is about 4.5 feet away from you, which makes it difficult to reach the sun shade or your kiddo mid-walk.
That said, the kids have a much roomier ride than they do with other double strollers, and they can entertain each other (or battle each other, depending on the day)… so it seems your sacrifice is their gain (ha, welcome to parenting!).
What makes it “Lux”?
This “Lux” model features include fancier seats (read: less plasticky feeling material than the regular version), a smaller fold with an automatic lock, a hand brake/decelerator, all-wheel suspension for a smoother ride, and the optional bench seat. Two smaller upgrades include the additional zippered pocket behind the seats and the mesh peek-a-boo window (instead of vinyl).
Yes, this stroller is really about the bench seat, people. The bench seat is unique because it offers older siblings (3+) a more dignified ride. Typically speaking, bench seats are only available on economy sit ‘n stand strollers such as the Joovy Caboose. Thus, with this stroller, you get that cool ride-on capability for an older child in a more luxurious, higher end product.
The upgraded seat fabric comes in several classy colors: taupe, port, granite, slate, indigo, and ash (the heathered slate color is particularly easy on the eyes). Again, you won’t find this look with the economy sit ‘n stands. It’s apples and oranges.
A Smaller Fold:
Folding is the Achilles heel of many double strollers, especially the tandems. This stroller can fold as a single or as a double, though it more… collapses than folds (so watch out!). On my stroller, one of the handles you pull up on to fold the stroller kept sticking, which made folding it a lot more challenging (many reviewers have also noted this, so it’s not just me!).
Most convertible strollers require removing the front seat in order to fold them, and the Lux is no exception. The seats on the Lux, though, fold in half (they don’t on the regular model), which both keeps the seats clean and makes the folded footprint 30% smaller. Thus, you have a better chance of fitting the Lux into a smaller trunk vs. the larger, original model. On the Lux, you take the front seat off first to fold up the back seat, then either put the front seat back on or leave it detached while folding the stroller.
For comparison-sake, we find the Vista and the B-Ready much easier to fold, but it’s not a deal-breaker.
The Lux also has an automatic lock when you fold it, another upgrade from the City Select.
One other new feature is the all-wheel suspension for a smoooother ride than the OG City Select. Though please note that if you’re riding off the pavement with this thing, your kiddos will still get bounced around a bit (it’s not a Land Rover, guys!). That said, I don’t know of too many munchkins who mind some bouncing around—whether in a stroller or just off the walls.
Baby Jogger City Select Lux Review: Features We Love
20+ Seat Combinations:
The Lux has four more seating possibilities than the regular City Select (because of the addition of the bench seat). 20 seat combinations sounds amazing, and it kind of is… with the caveat that in many of these more unique combinations (e.g., one kid likes parent-facing, and the other is outward-facing), there is not enough room between the seats to recline them. This is also true for almost every configuration (except with both seats parent-facing) when you’re using an infant car seat.
You can, however, recline both stroller seats if both are facing forward, both are facing backward, or they are facing each other (though something tells me not too many siblings will choose to nap rather than play “who can kick each other harder” in this position). I like that both kids have fairly equal seating options in the City Select stroller, and that one kid doesn’t look like he’s lost a coin toss, like in the Britax B-Ready:
We’ve all been there… pushing a stroller down a steep hill and fearing it could get away from you if you don’t keep a white-knuckled death grip on the handle (hello, San Francisco!).
The decelerating feature of the hand brake relieves you of this worry, as you can just squeeze it to slow the stroller down without having to lean backwards. This is a great safety-conscious option (usually only found in upscale jogging strollers like the Baby Jogger Summit X3 and BOB Revolution Pro), and very practical, since many users will have their bigger kid in the front seat pulling the stroller forward when going downhill (inertia!).
The Bench Seat:
The bench seat is my favorite thing about this stroller. Parents will be able to use the Lux for years more than they could with a regular double without a bench seat. The truth is that many three-year-olds just don’t want to get buckled into a stroller seat anymore.
My son, for instance, would rather walk or ride his balance bike (and it just feels weird to put a kid who can zoom around on a bike into a stroller seat!). The bench seat, though, is super handy for when he gets tired, and he can hop on and off with ease at places like the zoo. (Note that kids shouldn’t stand on the footrest while riding, so this bench seat does not work as a standing/riding board, though you CAN get an additional glider board as an option for a second or third child who wants to stand!).
Baby Jogger City Select Lux Review: Critiques
As much as I appreciate the deceleration option for strolling downhill, I have issues with this hand brake. It gets in the way of my right hand just enough so I can’t wrap my whole hand around the handle where I naturally want to… so I have to either rest my fingers on the brake while strolling or move my hand towards the center of the handle in a less comfortable steering position. The brake may also get in the way if you use an organizer that hangs between the handlebar, which many reviewers on Amazon have noted.
Another issue with the hand brake: while seated on the bench seat, my son could reach and (admittedly, with some effort on his part) unlock the brake himself by pushing up with both hands on the button that disengages the lock.
This won’t be a problem with kids seated in the regular stroller seat, since they’ll be strapped in and unable to reach the brake. And most kids, when on the bench seat, probably wouldn’t be able to disengage the button, as it takes some determination and dexterity to slide it… but it’s definitely not impossible that a strong preschooler could unlock the brake when you aren’t looking. Therefore, I can’t recommend relying on the hand brake if you have an older child on the bench seat who likes to do things like… play with buttons. I wish this stroller also had a foot brake as a backup for when you’re using the bench seat. Please be vigilant!
The 5-Point Harness Buckle, aka “Puzzle Buckle”
Before adding my parent hack (see to the left, the strip of black duct tape), this “puzzle buckle” drove me totally bonkers. It breaks into five separate pieces when unbuckled, and is challenging to put back together (you need to slide both small top pieces onto the bottom pieces and then connect them to the middle piece).
I’m sorry, but I just don’t have time to do a puzzle while my baby is squirming to get out of the seat! (Note: duct tape sold separately.)
The City Select Lux is a solid double stroller option with a few upgrades from the regular City Select — mainly the optional bench seat and the smaller fold, but also better suspension, nicer fabric on the seats (beautiful heathered colors!), and a decelerating hand brake.
It has lots of different seat configuration options, although only some of them allow you to recline the seats. It’s quite easy to push (if you’re on the taller side), and the seats seem comfortable for the kiddos.
It’s disappointing that almost every extra for the Lux costs… extra, but this is fairly common for luxury goods. Additionally, changing the harness straps and clipping in the “puzzle buckle” are surprisingly challenging (reminder: duct tape fixes everything!).
That said, I love the bench seat and the shopping tote (sold separately), and so does my three-year-old. It’s the only luxury stroller that gives you a bench option (most sit n’ stands are fairly clunky and cheap). If you have kids who are at least 2.5 years apart, this stroller is going to be much more useful in the long run for your family than the regular City Select.
I highly recommend test driving this stroller before buying one. Make sure you’re comfortable with the handle height, placement of the hand brake, and length of the stroller in different seating positions. If you’re ordering from Amazon, don’t throw out the box until you’re sure you’re happy with it.
Good luck out there, and happy strolling!
Back to: Blog