In the 1960s, British aviation engineer Owen Finlay Maclaren designed the first folding “baby buggy.” Since then, the Maclaren company has been big player in the design of lightweight and portable umbrella strollers. Their Maclaren Techno XT is everything you’d expect from a classic umbrella stroller and more, with numerous features including height-adjustable handles, a peek-a-boo window and an extendable sun visor. The Maclaren Techno XT is a good option for parents looking to invest in a high-performing and durable umbrella stroller that can be used from birth through the rest of their child’s stroller years.
Folding and Carrying
The signature feature of an umbrella stroller is its ability to fold. In our tests, we thought the Maclaren Techno XT was a breeze to fold and unfold, and our parent testers agreed. Folding the Techno XT is as simple as lifting the red pedal lock with your foot, stepping down on the lever lock, then gently pushing down on the handlebars. The automatic lock on the right side of the stroller holds everything in place. Unfolding the Techno XT is even easier—just lift the lock, pull up on the handles and step on the red pedal to lock into place. Most of our parent testers told us they could fold the stroller with one hand while holding their child in the other with little difficulty.
Something else to consider when purchasing an umbrella stroller is how easily it can be stored in vehicles and entryways. The Maclaren Techno XT folds to a narrow profile widthwise, with very little extra bulk from the wheels. All but one of our testers agreed the stroller was compact enough to fit into their vehicle’s trunk. When folded, the stroller stands on its own, so it can be easily stored just about anywhere.
The Maclaren Techno XT weighs around 14.6 pounds. While this was in the mid to low range of all the strollers we tested, more than half of our testers thought the stroller was only somewhat lightweight. That said, the majority of testers told us the stroller was easy to carry, even while also carrying their child. The Techno XT comes with a carry handle as opposed to a shoulder strap, which means you’ll only have one hand free when toting it around. The parent testers who used the stroller on public transit found it worked well.
Wheels, brakes and maneuverability
During our tests, we found the Maclaren Techno XT easy to push with one hand or two over a variety of surfaces including sidewalks, paved roads, gravel and grass. Our parent testers agreed, and most also found the stroller easy to maneuver through narrow spaces and around tight corners. A few testers told us they were less impressed with the Techno XT when steering with one hand, so you may have to hold off on that hot coffee (especially since there’s no cupholder). For bumpier terrain, the front wheels of the stroller (which normally swivel) can be locked into place so they only roll in one direction, making strolling over uneven surfaces a little easier. All of our testers agreed that the wheels are high-quality, and the majority of testers also found the Techno XT was able to handle curbs with ease. Taller parents will also appreciate that the handles can be adjusted up and down.
When testing the Maclaren Techno XT, we found the brakes to be simple to apply and release, and our parent testers felt the same. To apply the brakes, just step on either the right or left red brake pedal above either wheel, and simply lift to release. We found the brakes were very secure, and all of our parent testers felt the same.
Recline and leg rest
The Maclaren Techno XT has four recline positions: upright, completely flat, and two “relaxed” positions in between. All of our testers agreed that moving between the positions was easy and could be done with one hand. The Techno XT also features an adjustable leg rest, which, when combined with the full recline, makes for a nice napping surface. All but one of our parent testers found their child was able to nap easily in the Techno XT. The stroller’s seat can not be switched to a rear-facing position (which some parents prefer with very young babies). However, the Techno XT does feature a built-in mesh foot barrier (to keep baby from sliding out), shoulder harness pads and a head-hugging pillow insert to keep infants safe and cozy.
Come rain or shine, the canopy of the Maclaren Techno XT will have your little one covered. It is extendable, with a UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) rating of 50+ and a built-in sun visor. In weather that requires extra coverage, just unzip the top of the canopy to extend it and it will almost completely cover your child. Our parent testers agreed the canopy provided very good sun protection and somewhat to very good rain protection (the canopy’s fabric is waterproof, so that helps). The canopy is pretty much silent when opening and closing, so there’s no fear of waking a napping baby. It also features a peek-a-boo window so you can check on your little one with no fuss.
As with anything designed for daily use by children, your umbrella stroller is bound to get a little messy. The Maclaren Techno XT is a dream to clean with its removable and (every parent’s favourite words) machine-washable seat cover. While the seat cover requires a little wrestling to remove the first time, the process becomes easier the more you do it. The majority of our testers found the seat cover easy to remove and machine-wash, as well as easy to spot-clean for smaller spills.
Kids come with a lot of accessories, so it’s important that your umbrella stroller be able to store it all. The Maclaren Techno XT’s under-seat basket is mid-sized, reasonably accessible and can hold a maximum weight of 4.4 pounds. We were able to fit a large, packed diaper bag into the basket with only a little bit of shoving. Our parent testers, however, were unimpressed with the size of the under-seat storage, with most saying they couldn’t store all the things they needed for a day’s outing. For those who need the extra storage, the Techno XT does also feature two decently sized pockets in the back of the stroller (with a maximum weight of 1.1 pounds each). The Techno XT does not come with a cupholder, so the extra pockets are a great place to store your water and baby bottles, or some emergency snacks.
This stroller combines the convenience of an umbrella stroller with many of the extras of a full-size stroller—really the best of both worlds!” —Amanda, mom of one
The Maclaren Techno XT’s five-point safety harness opens and closes with ease, and all of our parent testers strongly agreed it felt both secure and sat comfortably against their child’s body. Opening the buckle can be done with two fingers, and all the pieces fit together intuitively and smoothly. While we found adjusting the tightness of the harness a little finicky, most of our parent testers found it somewhat to very easy. As your child grows, you will need to rethread the shoulder straps to adjust the height; all but one of our testers found this easy to accomplish.
All of our parent testers rated the Maclaren Techno XT’s quality and ease of use as good or very good, and all were left somewhat to very satisfied. Our testers were split on value, with half only giving it an average rating, but considering how long you can use it with your child, we think it can be a worthwhile investment. Over half of our testers said they would purchase this stroller, and they unanimously agreed they would recommend it to other parents. For its ability to smoothly handle all kinds of surfaces while providing newborns to preschoolers with a safe and comfortable ride, we think the Maclaren Techno XT is worthy of the Today’s Parent Approved seal.
All in all, it’s a great stroller. I think it would be a top choice for a family looking for a stroller that offers a lot of features but who would rather not buy a full-sized stroller.” —Kate, mom of one