Archived Q&A and Reviews

Kettler Fold-and-Go Tricycles

Nov 2007

Does anyone have any experience with the Kettler Kiddi-O Fold- and-Go tricycle? It must be relatively new, because we can't find any reviews on the web. P.S. I'd like to buy a used pair of these (or of Kettler's Happy Navigators) for my twin niece & nephew. Will pick up, pay cash. Twins' Auntie

Sorry but I cannot recommend the Kettler Fold n ride Tricycle. Last year I was researching the many different Kettler tricycles forever for my 3 year old son (he is VERY short for his age BTW) and it came down to the new Fold N Ride Kettler and their other tricycle, the Junior. I was swayed by the fold up and carry feature for the newer trike (and the fact the push bar was included and it was slightly cheaper was also a big bonus) thus ultimately I bought him the Fold n ride. When we got it home however, immediately we were disappointed. First of all, the little bucket on the back would not stay on, and my son barely touched it. Also it just seemed more cheaply made, not as sturdy, it also seemed a lot smaller, not sure why, than the jr trike. Anyhow, we returned it and even the sales clerk couldn't believe how the darn little yellow bucket in back wouldn't stay on. We exchanged up for the junior tricycle (also from Kettler) and have been delighted with it. He is almost 4 years old and still rides it (again, my kids are super petit so it probably takes them a good while to grow out of these). Yes, the back bucket also has a tendency to come off but that is only after many months and it we can easily put it back on and it will STAY on. I guess it wasn't necessarily just that, just the overall feeling that the folding tricycle just seemed not as good quality. I have seen other moms and kids at the park with it (fold n ride) though. I think ! these may also work better for super young tots, like a year and half to 2 years but they probably would outgrow those quickly. Good luck in your search

Tricycle for a 3 year old

March 2007

Hello! We need brand recommendations for a tricycle for our 3-year old. He is on the tall side and fairly strong so we need something sturdy. Also, his younger brother will be using it before too long so we're interested in something that will last. We definitely prefer a tricycle to a bike with training wheels that will give him more stability as he learns to peddle. Thanks! anon

They're expensive, but I'd go with a L'il Giant Tricycle. They're made by a bicycle company, of the same materials. See for full specs. Elizabeth

even though we already had 3 tricycles (a garage sale find, a handmedown with a missing pedal, and a plastic one), my connoisseur husband (who has 10 bikes of his own...) saw fit to shell out $80 for a Giant, because it was ''way superior, a nice riding tricycle, a quality trike.'' there's 2 sizes, too, and the one we have seems big to me, but is the smaller one. he got it at montano velo on piedmont ave in oakland.

3 yr. old refuses to pedal his tricycle

Jan 2007

My 3 year old son is very active- loves jumping, climbing, yelling and playing with balls, but refuses to pedal his tricycle. I didn't think much of it, but a friend asked if he was a late crawler (which he was) and said she had heard there were some exercises he could do to get more interested/able. Any ideas? Terry

I wouldn't sweat it. Our son showed no interest in his tricycle and refused to pedal it. He wanted us to push him. Then one day, he was interested and started to pedal it. He was over 3 yrs old when he finally decided, Hey, the tricycle is cool. Leila

Tricycles are hard to pedal, and some kids just don't like them. The pedals directly turn the wheels - no chains. My now six-year-old never liked his and would ride on the back of one and let others pedal him around at preschool. What he loved though was the trail-a-bike and riding behind his dad. He also had no problem riding a bike with training wheels when he was four. You might try one of those wooden pedal-free bikes (kind of like scooters the kids sit on) that are supposed to help the kid transition straight to a regular bike (expensive though). He may just not like the trike. I guess this isn't really the advice you wanted. I say don't make it a big thing. He may not be a triker! momma to non-triker who's now a biker and soccer nut

Kettrike Tricycles

March 2005

We would like to splurge on a KETTRIKE TRICYCLE for our son. We are considering the AIR JUMBO and the new AIR NAVIGATOR. Has anyone purchased or compared either of them? From what I understand the new Air Navigator does not have a hand brake but has the new steering feature on the push bar. Also, did you get a lot of flat tires with the air tires? Any feedback on one or the other or both would be greatly appreciated!! THANKS! anon

Hi, We splurged on a Kettler Air Jumbo Christmas for our 2.5 year old. I actually got a fabulous deal on eBay ($104!), so I felt a bit better about it. I like the trike alot.

On the plus side, it's really heavy duty, the air-filled wheels make riding/pushing easy, and the seat can move so it will grow with our kids. On the downside, it was kind of hard to put together (I actually still have 2 screws in the wrong place, but dread taking it apart to fix it) and the lock to hold the front wheel straight while it's being pushed is a bit crooked, so as a result we constantly veer towards the right and have to correct it. I don't know if that's just something easy to fix or not (more on dreading taking it apart...)

Check out this web site, it's got a great Kettler comparison chart. According to them, the Air Jumbo has been discontinued (maybe you can find a good deal somewhere?!)

Check eBay for a deal. - splurged and happy

Tricycle for upcoming 2nd birthday

Feb 2004

We would like to get a tricycle for our daugther's upcoming second birthday. Since there seems to be a lot of dimensions of variation (plastic/metal, adjustable/not, brakes, size, etc.), I thought I would see if others out there with tricycles had especially good/bad experiences with their purchases. Thanks! Anna.

Since she will not be able to actually pedal the trike until she is at least 2.5, be sure to get something that she can scoot with her feet and/or that has a push handle in back. We bought a plastic big wheel-type trike from that my now almost 4 year old has gotten years of riding from. LC

Radio Flyer Ulimate Trike

October 2003

I am trying to research a good sturdy tricycle for my 1-year old. I want something that I can push him on now and that he can ride on his own later. I saw the Radio Flyer Ultimate Trike (#48) in a catalog and it looked SO great (the push bar lets parents steer, seat belt, a bell...) but there were mixed reviews. I was hoping to hear from anyone who has expereince with this bike, or a similar style trike that they would recommend. It costs about $90 so I wanted more info before I sunk that kind of money into a kids tricycle. Thanks, CB

I would not recommend this trike. We purchased a Radio Flyer trike and, although it is made of steel, the few plastic parts broke right away and the handlebars do not firmly attach to the front wheel. Even after many bouts of tightening the bolt, turning the handlebars still doesn't always turn the trike! --Suggest You Keep Looking

First tricycle for a two year old

April 2003

My daughter's second birthday is coming up in about 2 weeks, and she's expressed interest in having a ''pink bicycle''. I'm thinking maybe I should get her a tricycle for her birthday, but wasn't sure what would work the best for her age. I've already looked at the website, but there aren't too many posts about what works well for a 2 yr. old. I don't think she'll be able to pedal for a while yet, but I also don't think I want to spend $130 for a Kettler Jumbo trike. Does anyone have any suggestions on what kind of tricycle is good for a two-year-old, and maybe where to look for it? Thanks very much. Looking for a trike

We bought a tricycle for our daughter when she turned 2 and she loved it at first sight ! Like you, I had my reservations about buying a trike that I knew she wasn't big enough for but she kept talking about 'bye-see-coals' so much that we caved in. We got a great deal on a pink trike at Hank and Frank (around $70). It was a Schwinn model that was being discontinued. We spoke with an older gentleman (whom I believe is the owner) about relevent tricycle advice. He seemed to be the only person there really knowledgeable on the subject. Interestingly, he wasn't too fond of Kettlers for safety reasons. For smaller kids, Hank and Frank sells blocks that you can put on the pedals. They also sell fabulous pink and white tassles ! I personally wouldn't worry about whether your daughter can ride the bike or not. Our daughter would just sit on hers pretending to ride when she first got it. She was able to reach the block pedals after a couple of months. She's now 2.5 years old can pedal with the best of them ! Happy Trike Hunting ! -RK

YMMV on this but I have found my 2 year olds aren't really ready for a trike. I think a trike-like ride on toy works a lot better. Radio Flyer makes a great four wheeled push with your feet bike and so does playskool.

We got a trike for my oldest at 2 (the Kettler trike, which my third is now using happily) and it brought him endless frustration even with the push bar option. We hid it away until he was around 2 years 9 months and he could totally manage it then. He was a big kid so it wasn't a matter of size, but coordination.

A lot of times grandparents want to give a big birthday present for 2 year olds. What was much beloved by all three was a toy kitchen with plenty of pretend food and utensils. Our kids loved this deeply, and while it was a pain to try and find a spot for it, it was worth it. Myriam

ToysRUs used to have Kettler knockoffs that are stable and a good size for a 2-year-old. I think they're about $35, and if memory serves, the brand is Kidco. They're primary colors, but we've made several bikes girly by adding sparkly stickers. Jennifer M.

My daughter also asked for a bike at two. I ordered her a plastic big-wheel type trike from the Toys-R-Us web site. It was perfect because at two her legs were not strong or coordinated enough to actually pedal it, and she was low enough to the ground that she could use her feet to scoot around. Now she is almost three and still loves to ride it and it will still fit her for another couple of years. halfdink

Which tricycle for 2-year-old?

May 2000

I saw the posting about the Kettler jumbo trike on the website. We're in the market for a tricycle for our two year old. We'd like one with an adjustable seat height to prolong its use. we heard good things about Kettler. We were thinking of the simple Kettler junior color. The more expensive ones (jumbo) have hand brakes and devices so they can be freewheeling or not. what does this freewheeling lever actually do? do we need one? is a hand brake necessary? we think not, but we'd like to hear from folks who have had tricycle experience. any more advice about tricycles would be very welcome. thanks. Susan

My son got A LOT of mileage (and I am speaking literally) from a basic Sears all American red trike (the kind with the step in back). Braking system: drag well shoed feet on ground; Freewheeel system: lift feet and legs high enough for pedals to move freely. Cost: about $30 Eric

Buying a trike v. buying a bike

Sept. 1999

We just bought our daughter a tricycle for her 2nd birthday. I asked a couple people about bikes vs. trikes and was told to get a trike as she'll outgrow the bike before she's ready for the training wheels to come off. We bought her a Kettler Jumbo, which is a gorgeous tricycle. Kettler is a German company and has a line of 3 or 4 trikes. They're sturdy and good-looking, and come with a removable push-bar at a comfortable height for a parent to push. The one we got has a handbrake, a cargo basket, and a lever that allows the bike to freewheel (or not). Anyway, that said, she hasn't really taken to it yet... she hasn't tried to pedal it herself, and hasn't gotten the hang of steering yet. But it's only been a week since her birthday.