Ok, the jury is in an we love our new Valco Ion 4 Two stroller. I'll get this out of the way right here and say that it's not perfect. But, my complaints are minor and thrown in to give a balanced view. So here goes:
It says that it weighs 26 lbs. but it sure doesn't feel that heavy. It feels like pushing nothing which is the mark of any good stroller, IMO.
This stroller is tiny. You know, for a double stroller. Yes, overall it's bigger than a bare-bones double umbrella but not by much. This does mean that the seats are "slim fitting" but unless you gave birth to that 19 lb. baby, (or feed your kids a strict diet of french fries, root beer floats and Twinkies), this won't be an issue.
3. Easy to fold. And use folded.
This folds down very easily (instructions are clear so I'm not going to paste them in here) and when folded, you can pull/drag it behind you like a roller suitcase. I didn't know about this when I purchased it so that was a fun bonus.
4. Huge sun shade.
The sun shade is very generous but even with that, there is a zippered part that gives extra coverage. Great for afternoon strolls when the 4 o'clock sun is beaming into my kids' eyes. The shade also has some peripheral blockage which deters curious baby hands from destroying store displays. Double bonus.
5. Rain cover.
The stroller, unbeknownst to me, came with its own rain cover. It snaps onto the sunshade and around the base of the seats so the babies are in a little cocoon of dryness. No such luck for us mommies but 2 out 3 ain't bad.
Because this stroller is lightweight and compact, it can turn on a dime. Think of that commercial for the Dyson ball vacuum - kinda like that. And, it can be pushed easily with one hand. So long as your pug isn't tied to the stroller and pulling it in the opposite direction. Then you'll need both. Also, the handle has 6 positions so it works for me at 5'4" and Billy at 6'3".
7. Reclining Seats.
Most high-end models have individually reclining seats so that's no big surprise here. But, I will report that to actually adjust them, with the baby in the seat, is very easy. One hand if you're adjusting it back, two if you have to pull it up. Still, it's a cinch. And the positions are "infinite" since its just a strap that you pull in and out.
1. Storage basket.
The basket isn't bad, but I've seen better. Because the stroller isn't that long (from back wheel to front wheel, it's 35.4", compared to the City Mini Double which is 38.5"), the storage basket doesn't have a huge surafce area. They tried to make up for it in depth, but, depending on how far back you have the kids reclined, it's not super easy to access. Again, it's not bad, just not the best out there. On the flip side, there are little storage pockets on the back of the seats for smaller items like a wallet, cell phone, snacks, pacifiers, etc.
2. Closed sun shade.