Established in 1993 in Ontario, Canada, Wike (the “Walk and Bike” company) supports their mission designing bike trailers and cargo bikes that allow people to walk and cycle effortlessly through their everyday needs. With a wide variety of trailers for kids, pets, cargo and more, we were excited to test our first Wike product, the Wike Junior, recently.
After testing throughout the colder months, we can say we LOVED the Wike Junior bicycle trailer! The Wike Junior is competitively priced against similar trailers from Burley and Thule (two of the biggest manufacturers in the industry), has space for all the things a family might want to carry (kids or gear), and features high quality construction and nice little touches that make living and riding with this cycling trailer a joy.
Read on to learn more.
Review In A Nutshell
- At $300, the Wike Junior Trailer is competitively priced
- Light weight (18 pounds), coming in two pounds less than a Burley Bee and four pounds less than a Thule Cadence trailer
- Built-in hard plastic floor is safe and durable
- Ample storage space for children and cargo
- Initial assembly and instructions were not entirely clear or intuitive
- Interior space may be tight for two older children
- No jogging or stroller conversion kits available
Price & Where To Buy:
- CA $379 List
- Price not available at Amazon.com* (Last updated: 2023-03-07 at 17:56) – More info
- Check price at Wicycle.com
Out of the Box…Mostly Intuitive…
The Wike Junior arrives in its flat, or storage, state. To assemble, the frame is pulled upward, locking in with a satisfying “click.”
The smooth rolling axles are inserted through the wheel hubs before clicking into the frame of the trailer, and are then covered by black rubber covers. Anyone familiar with assembling a Burley or Thule trailer will understand this process intuitively.
The tow-bar is inserted into brackets on the Junior’s frame, and secured via sturdy cotter pins in multiple places (more on this in a moment). Finally, the two-piece orange safety flag is unfurled and inserted into a stitched pocket on the backside of the trailer. Initial assembly of the trailer takes just minutes, and is mostly intuitive.
The one area that tripped us up during assembly was the “extra” cotter pin securing the trailer to the tow-bar on the inside of the trailer, a setup we had never seen before. The mating hole for the cotter pin was obscured by the trailer floor, which led to several minutes of head-scratching.
Ultimately, a quick e-mail to Wike’s Tech Support folks (and a quick response) cleared up the confusion, and we were on our way, fully secured and 100% safe.
While many trailers may look the same on the outside, there are little touches that seasoned riders will appreciate, and Wike checks the box for each of these in our book. The floor of the trailer is supported by a hard plastic floor, which prevents the little one’s feet from ripping through as can happen with lower quality cloth floors.
The bug screen and plastic weather-shield have large, easy to use hook-and-loop closures when they’re being used as well as when they’re stowed away. The trunk/cargo storage area of this trailer is substantial, but not to the point of taking away seating space from the kids, or making it feel like Mom or Dad’s towing an eighteen-wheeler behind their bike.
We could easily fit several grocery bags in the cargo area, making this trailer perfect for running errands in bike friendly communities, or packing for a day at the beach or park.
When it comes to our most precious cargo, there are several safety features we look for to ensure our children will be protected inside a cycling trailer. A solid, steel frame that acts as a roll cage in the unlikely event that the trailer were ever to tip or roll is imperative, and we were happy to see that Wike nailed this most important of design features.
A proper restraint system is also a must-have, which the Junior trailer has. We LOVED the restraint system on the Junior, because it adapts to those times when there are either one or two children in the trailer. With a solo rider behind our bike, the child is able to sit in the middle of the trailer, which ensures proper balance around corners (not that you’re going to be canyon-carving with your child in a trailer behind you, but a well-balanced trailer is appreciated nevertheless).
When the time comes to carry two kids, there are five-point harnesses for both. This modular design is smart, and shows that Wike put a lot of thought into getting the little things right with this trailer.
Additional safety features include reflective fabric strips on the front, side, and rear of the trailer, as well as standard reflectors on the wheels, and an orange flag on a fiberglass rod for additional visibility. The trailer itself is secured to the bike with multiple cotter pins and safety straps.
Having tested multiple trailers from several companies, we were very pleased with the safety features on the Wike Junior, and would not hesitate to use it with our own kids.
Sizing It Up
One thing that we can’t stress enough when deciding on which cycling trailer a parent is going to purchase is assessing how the trailer will be used. Is it going to be brought out on the weekends, for rail trail or bike path type rides, maybe with a picnic lunch in the cargo area?
Is it going to be a daily driver, taking the kids to and from school, or running errands like picking up groceries, riding to the laundromat, hardware store, or other shopping excursions? How many children will be riding in the trailer?
From a cycling standpoint, where the Wike excels is the ability to seat a single child in the middle of the trailer for stability, as we previously mentioned. This is a great feature for those weekend rail trail adventures, and the large, dedicated cargo space only adds to the functionality.
However, if the desire is to carry a single child and a LOT of cargo, it’s likely better to leave the child seated on one side or the other of the trailer, and then utilize the other seat AND the cargo area to carry more of everything (keeping in mind the limits of Mom or Dad’s fitness!).
The Wike Junior measures 24” wide internally (consider this as the amount of shoulder room the kids will have), which compares favorably to the Thule Cadence we tested in the past, which offered 22” of space from side to side. With our six and two year old test subjects in the trailer, things were snug, but as long as they were on each other’s good side that day, riding together for long periods of time would not be an issue!
For families in need of more space, Wike offers their Moonlite trailer, with up to 28% more internal volume.
Riding in Style and Comfort
In the most bikeable communities in America, the trailer behind Mom or Dad’s bike is as much a statement piece as the bike they’re riding, and certainly just as important. The Wike Junior can hold its head high here, as it combines good looks with everyday comfort.
The 20” pneumatic (air-filled) tires provide cushion for the passengers, although not to the extent that the company’s $699 Suspension Trailer will. With well-paved paths and roads nearby, we have never felt the need for a trailer with suspension, but keep in mind the option exists if the intended use will involve harsh terrain. While even the suspension models aren’t well suited to mountain biking on singletrack (we find the trailers to be too wide for this), they will certainly smooth out rough dirt roads or broken pavement.
As a passenger, say, a precocious two year old, or an adventurous five year old, the priorities change. Gone are desires for safety features and lightweight design (“C’mon, Dad, pedal faster, who cares how much we weigh!”), replaced by delight at the internal storage spaces next to each seat, which can easily accommodate a drink cup, snacks, or a small toy. If you’ve ever had to pull over on a ride to hand your child these items, you know how convenient and appreciated having them at their disposal can be!
Another crucial feature a good cycling trailer needs, in our opinion, is the ability to fold flat for transport. The Wike Junior does just this in seconds.
A quick push on the wheel hubs gets them free of the trailer frame, making for a nice, compact package that easily fits in the trunk of most vehicles. The trailer bar (which attaches trailer to bike) can also be removed easily, in case the Junior is being placed in a smaller vehicle’s trunk.
Is It Missing Anything?
We decided long ago that running was not our thing, so the whole jogging-stroller phenomenon never appealed to us, but we understand the appeal of that type of equipment. Several cycling trailer manufacturers have trailer models that convert from tow-behind for biking to a jogging stroller, which can save on the costs associated with having to buy two the two different items.
If this is your cup of tea, Wike has you covered, but not in the Junior trailer – for that, you’ll have to step up to the $599 Premium model and pay for the Jogger and/or Stroller conversion kits, at $90/$100, respectively (all prices CAD).
Wike is a company dedicated to changing the world through an embrace of “active transportation,” i.e., encouraging people to drive less and use more healthy forms of transportation as often as possible. With their extensive lines of trailers for everything from cycling with children, to riding with pets, or cargo trailers, or even trailers designed for children with special needs, they are well on their way to achieving their goals.
In the case of the Junior trailer reviewed here, we came away impressed by the solid construction, thoughtful features, and reasonable warranty, which runs one year on parts and labor and lifetime on the frame. Putting a Wike trailer in your garage means you’ve committed to having more adventures with your little ones (or pet, perhaps!), and for that we can all agree, the world will be a better place.
At $379 CAD, the Junior competes nicely with the Burley Bee, while coming in nearly $80 lower than the Thule Cadence. If you’ve been in the market for a versatile trailer that will last you a long time, you can entertain the Wike Junior with confidence for your little rascals!