Ridiculously light and beautifully crafted, the Cruzee balance bike truly stands out from the crowd. With its sparkling anodized aluminum frame, multiple safety features and ultra-lightweight frame, the Cruzee is an excellent starter bike for the youngest and lightest riders. Straight out of the box, our 4-year-old tester was enthralled with the bike and quickly began cruising around the house. With non-marking tires and no sharp edges or bolts to damage walls (or him), the Cruzee was a hit from day one.
Once temperatures warmed up, the fun continues outside. Five pounds lighter than the balance bike he typically rides, he quickly got out of his comfort zone and began coming up with new tricks. His 2-year-old friend, was equally mesmerized by the bike. With a petite, small frame, she LOVED carrying the bike around and insistent on showing everyone she could. From bike jumps to cruising the sidewalks, the Cruzee provided hours of fun for our testers.
Coming in nine beautiful colors, the Cruzee is unique in that it is not painted, but constructed with anodized aluminum. The frame will never rust and the color will never chip, although the color does scratch off the bike pretty easily. The handlebars and quick-releases are also aluminum, creating a truly rust-proof bike. The tires on the Cruzee are made of solid EVA foam, so they will never go flat and are essentially maintenance free.
To prevent scratches on the rear portion of the frame, Cruzee’s now come with pre-installed plastic scratch guards on both sides of the frame.
Assembling the Cruzee is also easy and straightforward. Simply attach the front fork, handlebars and seat post to the frame using the included quick-release clamps and the Cruzee is ready to roll. When mounting the quick-release clamps on the bike, be sure to line up the forks on the clamp to those on the frame. If put on backwards (which we mistakenly did), the clamps will not hold as tightly. On the handlebar, the quick-release arm should point away from the bike, while on the seat post, it should point towards the rear tire. To tighten the clamp, open the lever and turn the adjuster until a lot of resistance is met, and then close the clamp. In our experience, even when tightened as much as we could, the seat and handlebars still came out of alignment after crashes, so be sure to re-align after every fall.
The handlebars of the Cruzee are also narrower than many of the larger balance bikes on the market. The narrower handlebars make it great younger or petite riders, but can cause more twitchy steering in older, more advanced riders.
Although similar to the Strider in many ways, the Cruzee has many noticeable difference. With an aluminum frame, the Cruzee is lighter and rust-free. The seat of the Cruzee is also much more supportive and padded then the mini-saddle that comes standard on all Striders. Strider’s saddle on their extended seat post is the same size as the Cruzee’s, but with minimal padding. Every edge on the Cruzee has also been rounded to protect the smallest of hands, arms and legs from injury. In addition to using flat bolts, the edge of the aluminum frame below the front fork as well as the end of the body tube, has been rounded.
Currently, the Cruzee is only available with foam tires, although optional air upgrades may be available in the future. In our tests over several months, we had a chance to test out Cruzee foam tires in various terrains, and for the most part them performed well. For the average rider, who plans on riding mainly on pavement, the foam will work great, but in our opinion, more adventurous riders riding on dirt trails or over jumps, would benefit from the increased traction and cushioning provided by air tires.
Bottom Line: A standout bike for petite or small toddlers. Essentially maintenance-free, the Cruzee is as easy for parents to carry and take care of as it is for kids to ride.
Availability: Cruzee’s are available directly from Cruzee in all nine colors at Cruzee.com. On Cruzee.com you can also purchase a matching Melon Helmet (the red helmet used in the review pictures) for your child. Available in 28 different colors, the Melon helmet is one of our top-rated helmets for kids.
FTC Disclosure: All opinions given are that of Two Wheeling Tots LLC. No monetary compensation was provided for the review, but a sample bike was provided to facilitate this review. Two Wheeling Tots LLC is an affiliate of Cruzee and all links to Cruzee.com are affiliate links.