Peg Perego Vela Easy Drive is a lightweight stroller that is designed for running errands, quick trips to the store, and traveling. It has a good size canopy, large wheels and a big basket. It is very easy to navigate and maneuver with one hand. The roomy seat can accommodate a child from 6 months and up to 45 lbs and you can also convert it to a travel system by using Peg Perego car seat. Parents with back problems, like me, will be happy to know that it weighs only 15.8 lbs.
The large wheels and all-wheel suspension helps a little (but very little) to smooth out the bumps. It is an EASY DRIVE, but only if you stay on the flat surface. It is not all-terrain stroller and it doesn’t handle uneven pavement, grass or mulch that well. It is ok for a short 15 min walk in the park, but not anything longer than that. After a while (about 20 min), I usually get tired of pushing it.
Although it is advertised as a one-hand fold stroller, you will need to use both hands to fold this one. Also, I couldn’t make it stand on its own no matter how hard I tried. I guess the ‘folded stand’ doesn’t come in every Vela Easy Drive. LOL.
I gave it 3.5 out of 5 stars because of the hard to unlock brakes, canopy doesn’t go down far enough, too-much-freedom harness, non-adjustable handle bar, bulkiness, no peekaboo window closure, and lack of storage. I also wish the fold was a little easier.
It is sold for about $160- $199 on Amazon (FREE shipping/FREE returns and NO sales tax). The price varies depending on the color. I found my for only $90 at Marshall’s. I was still in the process of picking THE stroller, so I decided to get it for the time being. I bought it ONLY because it was very cheap and I figured I can always sell it on Craig’s list for $90. Would I buy it again? I don’t think so.
-Nice canopy. The canopy is large for a lightweight stroller, but not as large as on City Mini. I also wish it would go down another 1″. Evening and morning sun always gets into Sophia’s eyes. Just one more inch would fix the problem. There is a small peekaboo window that looks like a mesh, but is actually made out of clear plastic. It does NOT have a closure. The canopy can be detached from the back of the seat to expose an opening that will provide air circulation during hot summer day. It does convert into so called ‘floating canopy’, but as I mentioned above, it doesn’t go down far enough.
-Single handle bar. Peg Perego has many strollers with double handle bars, but this one has a single one. I prefer a single handle bar because it is easier to push with one hand. The only thing I don’t like is that it is NON-ADJUSTABLE. I am 5’9 and the handle bar is a little too low for me. It is made out of plastic and not foam. The foam would definitely feel nicer, but the plastic is easier to clean. That being said, I still like foam more.
-Roomy seat. It’s funny, but there is no seat dimensions anywhere on the site, so I had to measure it myself. The seat is 13.5″ wide with 18.5″ seat back and a measurement of 24″ from the back of the seat to the top of the canopy. It’s very roomy and nicely padded. I really like that the sides of the seat are high and my daughter has support if she wants to lean to the side.
It has infinite strap system recline that you can recline with one hand, but will need both hands to bring the seat back. The recline doesn’t go completely flat, therefore it’s not recommended for babies younger than 6 months (I pulled the canopy up on the photo so you can see the recline better). It is a VERY upright seat which my baby Sophia loves. She likes to pull herself up using the snack tray and look around. Although there is no adjustable leg rest, the seat is very deep (10″) which provides enough flat surface for small babies to place there legs comfortably.
-5 point harness. It has a freedom-of-movement safety harness, meaning the shoulder straps are not attached to the seat. It allows an active child to move and look around. I wish there was an option of attaching it to the seat because sometimes too much freedom is not that good (especially in the store where Sophia always tries to grab stuff of the shelves). The harness is NOT padded and kind of thin. I wish it was heavy duty like on Maclaren strollers.
-Large basket. The basket is very roomy. You can definitely fit a large diaper bag and still have some room left. It is also very easy to access. I often go grocery shopping with this stroller and it can fit a lot of stuff in there. Love the basket!
-Wheels. It has four hard rubber wheels. The front wheels are swivel, but can be locked straight for more stability. There are a lot of complaints from parents about the wheels, but mine stroller was fine. The only thing I don’t like, is all the dirt that gets stuck in the front wheels after the rain. I think the mechanism that holds the wheels is too close to the tires.
-Parking brakes. There is a parking brake on both of the rear wheels. You can easily lock each of the wheels by stepping on the pedal. Now, unlocking it is a PROBLEM. It takes a lot of effort to lift the pedal. I usually do it with my hand. I know … it is very frustrating that I have to touch a dirty pedal with my hand after I stepped on it with my foot. It is not flip-flop friendly…. I would say it is not friendly at all. LOL. Only for this reason I would NOT buy this stroller again.
-Easy fold. It takes TWO hands to fold it, not one as they advertise. The folding mechanism is not as smooth as you see in the video. I really have to slam the handle bar down and sometimes it takes me two or three times before I hear the click (the automatic lock). It does have an automatic lock, but I was not able to make it stand on its own. It looks very compact on the video but, I find it bulky. It takes all of the room in my trunk (I have a Land Rover… large trunk). Also, when I fold the stroller, the basket moves towards me hitting my legs every time if I don’t move to the side. Nothing like this happens in the demonstration video. The folded dimensions are 39.5.”L x 23″W x 13″H.
-Cup holder. INCLUDED! There is a removable cup holder that could be attached to either side of the stroller.
-Child’s tray. INCLUDED! It is nice to get a child’s tray and not have to buy it separately for once. LOL. It is a swing away tray that can be easily removed. My daughter loves to pull herself up using the tray to sit straight up.
-No peekaboo closure. I wish the viewing window would be larger and made out of dark mesh. A magnetic closure would also be a big plus.
-Too much freedom harness. It would be nice to have a padding on the harness and I wish there was an option of attaching the shoulder straps to the seat. When I go to the store, Sophia bends over the child’s tray and grabs stuff from the displays. Once, I didn’t noticed that she has two bracelets in her hands and walked out of the store. I noticed only when we go to the car. Thank God they didn’t call the security! I immediately turned around and returned it. This harness is simply dangerous, it might get you some jail time. LOL.
-Hard to unlock parking brake. The parking brakes are easy to lock, but very hard to unlock. It takes way too much effort and this is a deal breaker for me.
-Bulky. It is not a compact stroller. It would be much more compact if it folded in half like City Mini.
-Non-adjustable handle bar. I am 5.9″ and the handle bar is too low for me, so I wish it was adjustable.
-Little storage. The basket is the only place where you can store stuff. I wish there was a zipper pocket in the back of the seat or a canopy.
Here is a great video from Peg Perego that demonstrates Vela Easy Drive in action.
Stroller weight: 15.8 lbs
Weight limit: 45 lbs
Folded dimensions: 39.5.”L x 23″W x 13″H
Handle bar height: 40″
Seat to canopy height: 24″
Overall length: 30″
Overall width: 23″
Peg Perego gives 1 year warranty on the frame of the stroller and 90 days on fabric from the day of purchase. Here is more information on the warranty.
For 2013 Vela Easy Drive is available in six colors: Newmoon (brown), Regata (blue and gray), Southpole (silver and black), Nero (dark brown), Geranium (red), and Java (silver and brown).
Where to buy it
My favorite place to buy strollers and a lot of other baby items is Amazon. It usually has the lowest prices, free shipping, free returns and no sales tax. How great is that? You can get Vela Easy Drive in one of the six beautiful colors for around $160 – $199 on Amazon (FREE shipping/FREE returns and no sales tax). This is a great price considering many other sites are selling it for around $230.
P.S. If you like my review, please click “Like” button below.