Wonderfold Wagon W2 Elite review

Wonderfold Wagon W2 Elite review

Wagons for kids have come a long way since the days of the stamped steel Radio Flyer wagons, which also doubled for yard cleanup and likely dragging other hapless neighborhood kids behind you on your bike on a hot summer afternoon. Today’s stroller wagons are sophisticated pieces of machinery that fold up for travel and deploy with the idea that you are going to be out for the long haul for the rest of the day. Whether it is the zoo, a theme park, trekking through a national park, or a day at the beach. These suckers are engineered with parents in mind, safety for the kids, and versatility of being able to fold and go whenever you need them. It’s a Wonderfold world out there just waiting to explore, and this wagon is going to take you places.

Before we dive deep into this Wonderfold W2 Wagon review, let’s start with a video review of Wonderfold:

And, we’ll also take a moment to remind you that Fathercraft is reader supported, meaning if you click a link and make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no cost to you. Read more about our disclosures and how we approach these reviews in our policies.

Alright, let’s dive into this beast.

The Wonderfold W2 Elite wagon is one of many collapsible wagons made by the Wonderfold company.  Unlike a folding utility wagon you might use to drag around coolers and towels and other supplies, the W2 Elite is built for action, especially with kids and growing families in mind.  Here are some of the features:

  • Durability: The Wonderfold W2 Elite is tough and sturdy, coming in at 47 lbs and able to support 200lbs of kid weight.  It’s like a beefier Play-n-Pack with heavy duty all-terrain wheels, canopy, and an adjustable handlebar.  With modular seats that can be adjusted to recline or removed entirely, the kids can ride strapped in or sit comfortably in the wagon without the seats.
  • Body and frame: The frame is made of tubular steel alloy with reinforced plastic composite joints which allow for reliable folding and strength.  The Wonderfold W2 Elite won’t creak and flex like other stroller wagons after a long time of use.  It folds out to 54″tall x 19″ wide x 44″long, which allows for taller kids to ride comfortably with maximum visibility.  It collapses down to 20″ x 43″ to fit into your minivan, SUV, luggage rack, or bed of your monster truck for easy transport.  A safety catch keeps the entire unit folded and locked into place until you are ready to open it up and go.
    The body is covered by a breathable mesh fabric that covers all the hard points of the frame and snaps into place.  You can remove the entire works, including the seats, and harnesses, and throw the whole thing in the wash (delicate cycle, cold water, air-dry only) when it gets covered in too much stickiness and snack crumbs. 
    The mesh panels also feature privacy curtains which deploy from zippered pockets that Velcro to the floor of the wagon.  They are good at blocking the sun and wind for kids that are conked out and need a nap, or might have gotten Wonder-cold.  A zippered doggie door at the back of the wagon lets your kids climb in and out of the wagon, providing minutes of entertainment.  
  • Wheels: Four, solid-composite all-terrain rubber traction wheels with shock-absorbing ABS plastic spokes are ready to take on pavement, gravel, mulch, or sand and never need to be inflated.  The front wheels swivel on casters and the back wheels are rigid and set on a solid axle for strength and support.  A brake pedal is easy to kick down to stop the wagon from rolling, and sits in the middle of the back axle.
  • Seats: The seats are constructed from heavy-duty ripstop nylon with rigid fiber boards in the backing and seating for support and added durability.  The seats are removable for a variety of different uses, adjustment  positions, and even cleaning.  For bigger kids, special needs kids, or maybe parents (under 200lbs) the seats can be pulled and stowed in the storage basket. Threaded through each of the seats is a five-point harness featuring a magnetic buckle.  The seats face each other, with the rear-facing seat in the forward end, and a forward-facing seat at the back.  
  • Canopy:  The canopy is a four-poster set-up which is adjustable up to 54″ tall, or can drop all the way down to the top edge of the frame.  Each post of the canopy frame locks into place with the help of a pressure catch.  The canopy curtain itself can roll back and forth along the hoops to block your kids from the elements as needed.  Like the other fabric on the W2 Elite, it is UV resistant and cleans up with soap and water.
  • Handlebar: The handlebar is an attractive and grippy, vegan-leather which keeps your sweaty palms in control of the situation as you push your kids past the gift shop at the zoo, hoping they don’t notice the overpriced stuffed animals in the display window.  Because kids will ask for stuff no matter how many times you have Wonder-told them “No.”  It locks into three positions at different angles for tall, medium, and shorter people pushing.  It also folds completely out of the way for storage or just being parked.  Not only can you push, but you can pull with an included nylon webbing strap that ties to the front support bar.
  • Baskets and storage: Underneath the seats is space to stash toys, bags, or whatever else you need to haul around.  But on the outside of each side of the wagon itself is either a small zippered storage bag, or at the back is a diaper bag-sized compartment which zips and holds all your stuff.  There’s almost no limit to what they can Wonder-hold.  The big bag at the back also serves as a holder for the canopy if you want to remove the poles and fasten them to the frame with the attached nylon straps and snaps.
  • Breakdown: The whole unit folds up just like a play-n-pack.  Just press down on the levers on either side of the Wonderfold W2 Elite and lift up on the middle of the top bar and the whole thing will accordion in on itself.  If you are still rocking the canopy, you will need to push down all four posts before folding.  (Also, make sure the kids are out of the wagon first).  The seats can be left inside, but newer wagons might be more difficult to fold up without removing them due to their stiffness.  The safety catch keeps the unit from opening up again until you are ready. 
  • Trim: A wide selection of fabric colors are available, from  black, to black camo, to hunter orange, and a whole range of assorted colors and flavors in-between.  Match your car, look cool, or pick a trim for better visibility. 
  • Accessories: There are so many different things you can buy for this stroller wagon.  From insulated faux fur mittens to a heavy-duty pull handle, to stroller-type canopies, to baskets, and rubberized mats.  You can even get a solar phone charger, travel covers (for using on your luggage rack), or additional storage with bags, cupholders, and cargo nets.  You can click the affiliate links to find where these products are Wonder-sold.

Drawbacks

As neat as the Wonderfold W2 Elite is, it has its downsides too.  At $530 (recently down from $700), it is expensive.  Your first car might not have cost as much as this stroller wagon.  It’s also heavy at 47 lbs, and the videos you can find online for reviews make some of the users look like they might have needed hernia surgery after lifting it into the back of their minivans (lift with the legs!).  

The unit does fold up, but the canopy poles are a little clunky and never really seem to go up or down without some fuss. 

Wonderfold W-2 Elite, folded up in a driveway

The nylon fabric is washable, but the process of removing everything (and putting it back together again) is time-consuming.  Also, if you wash in hot or do anything other than drip dry, you run the risk of shrinking the whole damn thing, and if that happens you’ve got problems.  It might just be better to wipe down messes with a damp cloth and light soap. From what we’ve been Wonder-told.

Seats are removable, which helps with cleaning.

Like with any stroller brake, if you have big feet or walk too closely when you push, you run the risk of kicking the brake pedal and locking the wheels, making you feel like an idiot in the process. 

Detail of the brake on the Wonderfold W2 Elite

The five point harnesses are removable. However, they will not convert to lap belts only. 

Due to the weight and distribution of the frame, it might be hard to pop up an end to push up to 200lbs worth of kid(s) onto a curb or other uneven surface. Seriously, if you haven’t watched the video at the beginning of this review, go check out where this still came from:

Yes, that’s a fully-grown adult airborne trying to pop a wheelie to push a 3 YO and 4 YO over a curb. Physics, man.

The height of the wagon also leaves it vulnerable to tipping over.  Because of the ride weight and the narrowness of the tires, you are in for a workout if you try to push this thing loaded across sand.

The seats lean back quite a bit, but at the expense of legroom for the occupants.  The whole unit is pretty big when opened, and you might not be making any friends at a theme park.  Due to size restrictions, some parks (such as Disney) might not allow them at all. Be sure to check restrictions.

Comparison with Veer Cruiser

Other than the plethora of Wonderfold W-series stroller wagons, which vary slightly from trim to trim, the main competition is going to be the Veer Cruiser (Amazon). So, let’s talk about Wonderfold Wagons vs Veer Cruiser.

The Veer is a lower profile, minimalist stroller wagon.  The Veer Cruiser is a pull-type wagon with a similar fabric body and steel alloy from.  It also features caster wheels and all-terrain tires.  It folds up for storage and travels much like the Wonderfold, and the occupants face each other when they are buckled in as well. 

Veer does not come equipped with much else.  Canopies, storage bags and baskets, and other accessories which come standard with the Wonderfold are all available for purchase, which could reach an already expensive price point of $700 into around four digits.  For a wagon.  Not a station wagon. Or a Conestoga wagon.  But a stroller wagon.  That’s enough to make most people Veer into buying something else.

The Wonderfold W2 is a more comprehensive unit, especially for what you are paying for, taller, a push-type design, and with built-in tidbits like the canopy and storage pockets and baskets, you are getting more for your dollar.  The canopies (after market of course) aren’t as high, and might not be as comfortable for taller kids.  The Veer Cruiser does come with a snack/drink tray and two cup holders.  It is a pull-type design, and also features all-terrain wheels.  Fully-loaded, the Veer can carry about 170lbs.  So, unless you lay off the snacks, you probably won’t be taking a nap in a Veer Cruisere anytime soon.

Wonderfold FAQ

How does it compare with other Wondefold wagons? 

The W2 Elite is a mid-size stroller wagon with an occupancy of 2 kids (buckled in).  The W4 is slightly wider to accommodate the extra passengers (four kids), and the seats feature a middle harness setting that gives you a middle-seat belt option.  The Luxe and the Elite are very similar, with built-in canopies, storage pouches and baskets, and composite all-terrain wheels.  The original W2 is a little bit more no-frills, without a canopy and non-adjustable seating.  

The Elite seems to be a happy medium when it comes to ease of use, comfort, and accessories.  The price point is also reasonable when compared to the higher end models.

Is the Wonderfold wagon worth it?

It all depends on how much you are willing to pay for comfort and ease of getting your kids from one end of the Zoo to the other.  It rolls quietly, pushes and pulls easily, and folds up for travel and storage.  It is also less expensive than what other folding multi-occupancy stroller wagons are going for, so sure!

How much is the Wonderfold Wagon?

The W2 Elite has gone down in price to around $530 from $700.  You might want to buy two for that!

Can you wash the Wonderfold wagon?

Yes, but it is a complicated process of taking the fabric off, removing the rigid seating panels, and being mindful of your washing machine settings.  Then putting the whole thing back together again.  Cold wash, delicate cycle, drip dry only. Our experience is that it’s better to just wipe messes clean.

Wonderfold Wagon weight

A heavy-ass 47lbs.

Are Wonderfold wagons good for the beach?

As with anything with wheels other than dune buggies, you might not like pushing up to 200lbs of kids and cargo through sand.  

Traveling with the Wonderfold wagon

It does have a bulky footprint, not leaving you with a lot of space inside your vehicle, but once you get to your destination, you might appreciate the wagon when you get there.

The Verdict

Even though the Wonderfold has a price point at the upper end of the scale, it makes up for that with the accessories it comes with as well as the ergonomics of its size and comfort of use for adults that are pushing the thing.  It’s plenty roomy for the kids and has some excellent safety features.  It is durable, sturdy, and pretty cool to look at.  It works as well as a full-sized stroller, if not better, since it gives the kids an area to hang out, play on the go, and keep them shaded on sunny days.  It’s a little bit on the big side for size, but for what you are getting it is very compact when folded up.  This stroller wagon will last you for years to come and probably have you grateful you spent the money on it. Once you start using the W2 Elite, you might never go back to using strollers again. 

Kids never got tired of the doggy door

Maybe not the best for the beach, but it will serve you Wonderfold-ly just about anywhere else you find yourself.

Sorry, had to get that last one in there. And seriously, this thing is pretty awesome. So, we added it to our list of the best strollers of 2022. Ok, technically it’s a wagon. But, stroller-wagon is hip. You can also see all of our stroller reviews here.

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