The phil&teds Explorer is a single stroller with an optional second seat, which you can snap on either in front of or behind the main seat. Reviews say it improves upon its predecessor, the critically acclaimed phil&teds Sport Buggy Double (*Est. $450, plus $90 doubles kit), in several ways. Unlike the Sport, the Explorer can accommodate an infant car seat and the second seat at the same time; the main seat reclines to any position (including flat) with one hand; both seats have adjustable sun canopies; the new pedal brake is easy to use; and children can now climb in and out of the back seat without the danger of tipping the stroller over (in the Sport, the child sitting in front had to be put in first to stabilize the stroller). The seats are roomy, with lots of head room for even the tallest children (the main seat can hold 44 pounds, and the second seat 33 pounds). Reviewers like that the Explorer is really no bigger than a single stroller, and it folds up with one hand. Tall users report no problems kicking the back of the stroller as they stride, thanks to the adjustable handlebar that also tilts downward for short users. The removable, washable seat liner is also a plus.
A couple of parents worried that their toddlers wouldn't like sitting in the rear seat (the main seat completely blocks its view), but they report that their kids actually liked the cocoon feeling back there. Note that when a toddler sits in the rear seat, their legs rest in the bottom basket, so you won't be able to use that for storage if you have two riders. Also, the Explorer's second seat doesn't recline, so it's suitable only for toddlers or babies with head and neck control. If you need a double stroller for newborn twins, reviews suggest a more traditional stroller with two seats that fully recline or accept two infant car seats, such as the Graco Quattro Tour Duo (*Est. $250) or Graco DuoGlider (*Est. $150).
BabyGizmo.com's Hollie Schultz has posted a very thorough video review of the new phil&teds Explorer on YouTube. We also found brief reviews of this new model at Babble.com, BabyCenter.com, WildChildGear.com and Which? magazine, plus an owner-written review at Amazon.com. The latest edition of "Baby Bargains" came out before the Explorer did, but the book includes good coverage of the phil&teds brand in general.
Veteran stroller reviewer Hollie Schultz finds a lot to love about the new phil&teds Explorer in this video review. She thoroughly demonstrates how to operate the stroller (including how to attach the optional second seat to either the front or back) and she films her 3-year-old toddler climbing into the second seat by himself without tipping the stroller -- one of the new model's improvements.
Review: phil&teds Explorer Video Review, Hollie Schultz
Readers pick the phil&teds Explorer as one of their favorite double strollers. Editors say it's very maneuverable and handles broken sidewalks and rocky surfaces extremely well, and they like that it accepts a wide variety of infant car seats. In fact, they say they would have picked it as the best urban stroller except for its relatively heavy weight, although some users may find the Explorer's single-stroller width and convertible design worth the weight.
Review: Reader's Pick: phil&teds Explorer, Editors of Babble.com
Mom of four Molly Balint tests the phil&teds Explorer with her daughters. She worried that her 3-year-old wouldn't like sitting in the add-on back seat with little view, but she actually pulled up the canopy and enjoyed her cocoon. Balint loves the washable seat, adjustable handle, easy-to-adjust straps and fluid handling. The Explorer is a bit heavy, but Balint doesn't mind, as it's a solid piece of equipment.
Review: Giveaway! phil&teds Explorer Stroller, Molly Balint, Aug. 26, 2010
This retail site includes a blog with baby gear reviews. This plain-spoken review appreciates the improvements on the new phil&teds Explorer, including the bigger canopy (the one on the preceding phil&teds Sport model "was pretty much useless") and the drawstring recline (no buckles, like on the Sport). In fact, now that the Explorer is here, the reviewer sees no point in the pricier Dash model.
Review: The phil&teds Explorer Hits the Floor!, Editors of WildChildGear.com, Aug. 26, 2010
5. Which? magazine
Which? magazine briefly evaluates the phil&teds Explorer -- successor to the phil&teds Sport, which was included in the magazine's most recent stroller test. Editors explain the major differences between the two models, as well as some benefits and drawbacks.
Review: phil&teds Unveils Two New 'Inline' Pushchairs, Editors of Which? magazine, Sept. 25, 2010
The new phil&teds Explorer had only one review posted when we checked at Amazon.com, but we expect more to accumulate at this popular retail site. The reviewer gives the Explorer 5 stars -- and, like BabyCenter.com's reviewer, she finds that her toddler unexpectedly likes riding in the back seat, despite its limited view. Amazon.com does have plenty of reviews for the preceding phil&teds Sport model, which the Explorer improves upon.
Review: phil&teds Explorer Stroller with Doubles Kit in Black, Contributors to Amazon.com
7. Baby Bargains
This edition of "Baby Bargains" was published before the new phil&teds Explorer hit the market, but the book does include an analysis of the Sport Buggy Double that the Explorer replaces, as well as the phil&teds brand in general.
Review: Strollers, Denise and Alan Fields, Eighth edition, 2009