The Graco LiteRider is a basic stroller without any fancy bells and whistles -- perfect for those who don't want to shell out a lot of money. It won't win any beauty contests, but it has good features for the price: cup holders, trays and an easy fold. Its biggest drawback is that most models only come with a three-point harness. This may be a problem for parents of particularly squirmy toddlers and is not considered safe for infants.
Three-point harness. From the website, it appears that some versions of the Graco LiteRider single stroller have a five-point harness, although most have only a three-point harness. We contacted Graco, but could not get a definitive answer on which models have the five-point harness. Several owners complain that they saw the LiteRider in a store with a five-point harness, but when they ordered it their model had only a three-point harness. Unless you have a child who is content to sit quietly in a stroller seat, a five-point harness is a must. It's also a necessity for younger children who may not have good stability. The rear brakes lock individually.
Folding, as well as everything else, is a breeze. Owners say this stroller is very easy to assemble, use and fold. However, if you use the one-handed folding method, the baby tray smashes to the ground and can be damaged over time. Baby Gizmo founder Hollie Schultz graphically demonstrates this in a video, as well as a way to fold the stroller to prevent that from happening. It's easy to snap in the car seat, and it's easy to clean. Experts and owners say it pushes best on smooth surfaces.
Car seat compatible. The Graco LiteRider is compatible with several top-rated Graco car seats, but only Graco car seats. There are no adapters to purchase; the car seats just snap in with the patented Classic Connect feature. There are no other expansion capabilities. The LiteRider is rated for children up to 40 pounds; however, it's two-position recline, which doesn't include a full recline, may not make it well-suited for newborns. A spokesperson for Graco says it's suitable from birth, but the American Academy of Pediatrics says a newborn should be able to recline fully until they are about 3 to 6 months old.
Best for light use. A number of reviewers say the Graco LiteRider is a great stroller for the suburban parent with a baby in a car seat, but it's not the best choice for walking because it doesn't seem durable. At 17 pounds, smaller moms say it's easy to lift. It has a standing fold and automatic lock. Parent and baby trays are included, complete with cup holders. The baby tray is removable, but parents say it's a hassle to remove and it's easier to just wiggle the baby out from under the tray. The canopy is small.
The Graco LiteRider comes in 14th out of 21 strollers, earning a Best Value award, with an overall score of 58 out of 100. Spurrier says it's affordable, lightweight and easy to fold, but bulky. She likes that it includes so many convenience features. It falls short on safety due to the three-point harness.
Review: Graco LiteRider Review, Juliet Spurrier, MD, Nov. 9, 2013
2. Baby Bargains
"Baby Bargains" is a popular and well-organized guide to baby-related products. Authors Denise and Alan Fields conduct hands-on testing as well as parent, manufacturer and retailer interviews. Their section on strollers is detailed and offers a wealth of useful information. The Graco brand gets a thorough overview.
Review: Strollers, Denise and Alan Fields, 2013, 10th edition
In more than 130 reviews, the Graco LiteRider earns 4.4 stars out of 5 -- higher than some more fancy strollers. However, the low price seems to be the main feature everyone likes. Even happy customers say the canopy is small and it seems flimsy.
Review: Graco LiteRider Classic Connect Stroller, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of January 2014
Hollie Schultz tests the LiteRider with a three-point harness. She says it's a good basic stroller but you get what you pay for. It has a short seat back and only a partial recline, but does come with parent and child trays and cup holders.
Review: Graco LiteRider Stroller Review, Hollie Schultz, Feb. 7, 2011