Yepp Seats 101
Thule brand Yepp seats are some of the most popular baby and toddler bike seats on the market today, but Thule doesn't necessarily do a great job explaining the differences between each of them. There’s the Mini, the Maxi, the Easy Fit, the Nexxt, adaptors, rear racks, and… mount systems? If your head is spinning, we’re here to help.
First, let’s review the differences between the seats:
The Thule Yepp Mini attaches to the front of your bike so your child is riding behind your handlebars and has a weight limit of 33 lb. An adapter is included in the seat’s purchase price, but you’ll need to choose from the standard adapter or the threadless adapter. If your bike has a steel, 1.5 inch exposed quill-type stem, you’ll need to choose the standard adapter to mount your seat to your bike. If your bike has a handlebar with a steel front fork, you’ll need the threadless adapter. The Mini also offers some great accessories: the wind screen, the sleep roll, a rain cover, etc.
There are some drawbacks to choosing a front seat: Folks usually only get 1-2 seasons of use out of the Mini because of the low weight limit, shorter parents may have trouble seeing over the seat and their child (!), and it will not work well on bikes with drop-style handlebars.
Your success with this seat will vary greatly, depending on the type of bike it is installed on. The Yepp Mini works most successfully on bikes with swept back handlebars and a relatively upright posture, like the Public C7 or Public M7.
It is so fun to ride with your kiddo up front between your arms, though--someone once referred to it as a “10 mph hug” and they were right!
The Thule Yepp Maxi attaches to the back of your bike, so your child is riding over the rear tire. There are three types available: the Yepp Maxi Regular, Yepp Maxi Easy Fit, and the Yepp Nexxt Maxi. All Yepp Maxi models have a weight limit of 48 lb.
The Thule Yepp Maxi Regular attaches to your bike’s seat post and an adaptor is included in the purchase price. The adaptor does not fit all bikes, depending on the routing of cables & length of the seat tube. The adaptor may also limit how low your seat can go.
Worth noting: the Yepp Maxi Regular is not cross-compatible with the Yepp Maxi Easy Fit seat. Yes, the seats look identical, but they utilize different mounting points & cannot be swapped back and forth. So, if you have the seat post adaptor installed on your bike, you will not be able to mount a Yepp Maxi Easy Fit seat. If you have a Yepp Maxi Regular seat (seat post mount), you will not be able to use it on a cargo bike or any other “Easy Fit compatible” rack or adapter. That’s not confusing at all, right?
The Thule Yepp Maxi Easy Fit attaches to your bike’s rear rack with either a Yepp brand rear rack (if your bike doesn’t already have a rear rack) or an adaptor (if you have an existing rear rack that is rated to carry at least 50 lbs), both of which can be purchased separately. Yepp also offers the option to purchase an XL adapter, if you’d like to add panniers to your rear rack in addition to the seat. Or, for owners of the Yuba Mundo Classic or Boda Boda v2 cargo bike, Yuba offers a special adapter for this seat.
The Thule Yepp Nexxt Maxi clamps directly to a rear rack (must be rated to at least 50 lbs, see dimension requirements in graphic below). The Nexxt Maxi is also compatible with the Xtracycle RFA and Tern GSD (GSD only fits one Yepp Nexxt seat safely).
Whew! That’s a lot. Now, let’s talk about what all these seats have in common.
All four seats have the same guidelines to determine that your child is ready to ride in the seat: she must be able to sit upright independently, fit securely into a helmet, and have the neck strength to hold her head up with a helmet on.
We also always recommend using a double kickstand, like the Ursus Jumbo, for easy & safe loading/unloading.
All four seats are simple to install and remove from your bike, and can be shared between multiple bikes. Every seat comes with a key & option to lock the seat onto the bike, so the only person removing it easily will be you! Each individual bike will need to be outfitted with the correct racks or adapters, however.
And, all four will allow you to safely strap your child in and cruise around town with them in tow. Win, win!
There’s no clear favorite among the Yepp seats for families who bike. Every family’s needs are different, and all four offer benefits. If a cargo bike might be in your future, but you want to start out with a regular bike + seat set up for now, the Yepp Maxi Easy Fit is probably the wisest choice, as the seat will easily transition to a cargo bike someday.
If you want to start explore which Yepp seat will be most compatible with your bike and lifestyle, or ready to have a seat installed, schedule an appointment with us today! We’re happy to help you find the perfect set-up for your family.