Kids Ride Shotgun 2.0 Seat and Handlebar Review

Author: Malorie Gage

Updated:

One of my all-time favorite things about being a parent is getting to do the things I love with my kids and that includes mountain biking. If you’re not familiar with the company Kids Ride Shotgun, they are based out of New Zealand and have been making mountain biking seats, bikes, and accessories for kids since 2017.

They recently released the 2.0 version of their original child bike seat and boy, are you in for a treat. The upgrades made to both the seat and handlebars makes this child seat one of the best ones on the market AND one of the most affordable ones.

Kids Ride Shotgun 2.0 Trail Ride

Review in a Nutshell

Pros:

  • Easy to put together right out of the box. KRS includes all the tools necessary, making it super simple and fast to assemble.
  • Quick release system makes putting the seat on and taking it off even easier than the original seat.
  • The saddle has a ton of cushion.
  • The tilt of the saddle is adjustable which is important when using it on different bikes.
  • The KRS 2.0 seat offers nice and thick padding to protect your bike frame.
  • The KRS 2.0 can be used with carbon and alloy frames.
  • Kids from 18 months to 5 years can ride on this seat. This is a great option for younger kiddos.
  • Affordable compared to other KRS models and competitors like MacRide.
  • KRS offers a 12-month warranty on the child seat and handlebars. They encourage customers to reach out even if they are past their warranty or bought second hand.
  • Works great with a dropper post.

Cons:

  • It is mounted to the frame which can be problematic for some, especially with expensive bikes.
  • It only has 2 feet peg positions which is better than the original, but it still doesn’t offer a ton of room for growth.
  • Coinciding with the leg length, is the lack of tightening places for feet. There are only two options which is really limiting.

Price & Where To Buy:


What’s the Difference?

You’re probably wondering what the main differences are between the original KRS child seat and the new 2.0. Well, surprisingly, there are a few major upgrades to the 2.0 model.

First and most important is the ability to adjust the leg length. The original model came with a fixed leg length and thankfully, KRS put an adjustable length on the 2.0 version.

With that being said, there are ONLY two options for leg length. I wish they would have made more options for leg length because my 3-year-old is almost 4 feet tall. He has long legs, and we likely won’t be able to use seat until its max age and weight.

Another awesome upgrade the 2.0 received was the increase in weight limit. The new weight limit is now 60 pounds versus the original weight limit of 48 pounds.

They also made it for children as young as 18 months whereas the original model required kiddos be at least 2 years of age before riding. Keep in mind that KRS still advises that kids need to be able to sit unaided, follow basic instructions, and stay awake for the duration of the ride before putting them on the KRS seat.

Quick Release for the Win

The 2.0 model now has a quick release making the install and take off as quick as 15-30 seconds. This is a huge improvement from the original that took a little more manpower and time.

KRS also upgraded their handlebars. The 2.0 version has better, more comfortable grips and rubber backing on the part that is mounted to your bar is higher quality than the previous version.

I really appreciate the upgraded rubber backing because after owning the original handlebars, all my bars have scratches and marks from where they were mounted since the rubber tore within the first few uses. It’s not so much of a big deal when the bars are aluminum, but I don’t like all the scratches on my carbon bars.

Kids Ride Shotgun 2.0 Handlebar Comparison
Notice the rubber rings on the newer bars on the left compared to the older ones on the right.

If you want to learn more about the original seat and decide which seat is better for you and your kiddo, check out our in-depth review of the KRS Original.

Putting It All Together

Like with any KRS product, the assembly is extremely easy. The box comes with all the tools necessary and even comes with tattoos, my son’s favorite part. There were only a few parts to put together before the seat was ready to use. It took about 15 minutes to put together.

The other nice thing about this kid seat is the fact that there is nothing I must change on my bike. Unlike other seats, this seat mounts directly to the frame meaning I don’t have to take my headset apart. It also makes putting it on and off a breeze.

Easy Peasy Install!

My favorite thing about the new KRS seat is the ease of install. This new seat is extremely easy and quick to put on and take off your bike. Just the seat alone takes about 10-15 seconds and the handlebars roughly a minute to get the screws tightened down.

One nice feature about the install and removal is the quick release button meaning you don’t have to spend time threading it in AND it makes switching to a different bike super-fast and simple- a big complaint I heard a lot about the original seat.

KRS 2.0 Combo Four
Photo Credit: Kids Ride Shotgun

The handlebars are straight forward and come with different size rubber spacers depending on the size of your handlebar.

Is There Enough Adjustability for Your Kiddo?

One of the things I don’t like about the KRS 2.0 Seat is the lack of adjustability in the leg length and foot strap.

There are only two settings for leg length, and this becomes an issue when you have an extremely tall kid like mine. My son is only 3 years old but is already 44 inches tall with shoes.

One of the saving graces about the lack of leg length adjustability is that you can adjust the position of the legs providing your kiddo with a more comfortable ride the taller they get.

KRS Mounted On Mom's Bike

Another issue is the foot strap options. There are only two, and I found this problematic because it was either too tight or too loose.

When we first saddled up, I had them on the loosest position and his feet were slipping out, so we tightened them up which helped with his feet stay put, but after about 30 minutes he complained that his feet were hurting.

One thing I really like about his child seat that I haven’t found in others is the ability to adjust the level of the saddle. Because you can adjust the position of the legs, the saddle isn’t always level so having that option to make it the perfect set up is really important. I also found it helped with switching the seat between different style of bikes.

Handlebars Are a Must for Little Hands

The 2.0 handlebars are a MUST for your little shredder. Not only are they the perfect size for their little hands, but it helps keep them from playing with your dropper and brakes. The 19mm grips are a much better fit for my 3-year-old than my 35mm handlebars. We don’t ride without them on the bike.

They are made to fit bars with 25.4mm, 31.8mm, and 35mm diameters and can be used with flat or riser handlebars. There is also adjustability within the handlebars, and they can be used with a variety of stems.

KRS Profile

Made For Singletrack Shredding and Pavement Cruising

This child seat does great on the singletrack. I was a little nervous at first because it is a frame mounted seat. There was zero movement when my kiddo was sitting on it. It handled all of the obstacles we threw at it, and I didn’t hear one peep out of my son about it moving underneath him.

Kids Ride Shotgun Trail Ride

We also found it was a great way to get to and from the park on our local bike trail system. Because it is so easy to put on and off, it was actually faster (and more fun) to ride our bike to the park instead of loading up in the car.

How Does it Compare to its Competitors?

Compared to MacRide, this seat offers a much faster on and off and the quick release makes this seat a game changer. The Kids Ride Shotgun 2.0 requires zero modifications to one’s bike. The MacRide does offer a wider saddle and more adjustability in leg length and foot strap tightness.

Overall, MacRide is still our family favorite just because of the adjustability factor, but I love how quick and easy the KRS seat is. I find myself choosing it for shorter rides over the MacRide because of how fast the install is.

With the MacRide, I have to get my Allen wrenches out adding an additional step. When my son is ready to go- he’s ready to go meaning I have to hurry and get him on the bike before he changes his mind.

Fits on Different Mountain Bikes with a Few Exceptions

If you plan to use this child seat with an e-bike, you’re out of luck. This will not work with an e-bike, gravel bike, or any type of cruiser. Although this seat isn’t compatible with an e-bike, KRS makes their pro seat that DOES mount to an e-bike. If you want to learn more about that child seat, check out our review.

You can use this seat with any modern mountain bike. Including an aluminum or carbon frame. If you have an older bike or one that has externally routed wires, you’ll need to make sure they are routed on the bottom of the top tube- NOT the top. The seat will not fit properly if the cable routing is routed across the top of the top tube.

Adults Can Ride Comfortably, too!

Sure, you might be a little bow-legged depending on the geometry of your bike, but the KRS 2.0 seat is extremely easy to ride with. It makes handling the bike easy even with the extra weight and I found if I put it on my cross-country bike, I had enough room that I didn’t have to ride bow-legged.

One quick tip if you are having to ride bow-legged is to put flat pedals on your bike so your feet can naturally turn out. If I put the seat on my enduro bike, I most definitely am riding bow-legged, so I put flats on just to make it more comfortable for me and I don’t have to worry about my clipless pedals unclipping.

Kids Ride Shotgun Trail Ride Two

See The KRS 2.0 In Action

Here’s a little video we made about the Kids Ride Shotgun 2.0!

Bottom-Line: More Miles = More Smiles

All in all, the KRS 2.0 child seat and handlebars are a smokin’ deal. I love the fact that they have made some significant improvements from the original and kept the price down.

The quick release makes putting this seat on and off your bike a breeze and I highly recommend this child seat if you do not want the hassle of making any modifications to your bike. I love the mission that KRS has, encouraging kids to get off devices and in nature and honoring and growing the parent child relationship.

If you’re looking for other ways to interact and involve your kiddos, the KRS seat will bring endless joy to you and your family for years to come.

More Reading!

About The Reviewer

malorie gage

Malorie Gage is an avid cyclist who has been mountain biking, road, gravel cycling for many years. She lives in Colorado where she’s raising two tiny humans and balancing biking and motherhood.

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