On top of all the inconveniences people on a wheelchair are constantly facing, choosing a vehicle to drive when you are in that predicament can be also extremely challenging. Even though any vehicle can be modified to accommodate a wheelchair, some of them are better than others.
Full Size Vans
Majority of the full size vans are equipped with a lift instead of a ramp which makes the price of the vehicle significantly higher, even though this kind of vehicle is not that great on gas due to the high center of gravity. Italos makes them less stable on the road. Unfortunately, most of the vehicles almost need their back door widened to fit in a ramp or a lift. Overall, compared to the minivans, they need lots of modifications done before you can comfortably use them for a wheelchair.
Almost all of the SUVs are four wheel drives that can be a critical factor for those who live in changing weather conditions. The downfalls of those vehicles are: pricey maintenance, low gas efficiency, higher cost of insurance. Due to the fact that the vehicle is pretty high, it makes in less stable on the road, just like the full size vans. To make this vehicle wheelchair accessible you will need to invest a lot of money in transfer seats, hitch mounted lifts and kneeling system. Same issues will be faced if you are looking into pick-ups.
This kind of vehicle appears to be the best wheelchair vehicle. The benefits include lots of room inside, well-thought wheelchair access, good height of the car, top safety rating, efficient gas consumption and they are very affordable compared to everything else. When choosing a vehicle you will have plenty of options such as side or rear entry. They are all equipped with either power or manual ramp for your wheelchair. Due to the low center of gravity they are easy to drive and are good on gas. In addition to that, we advise you to look up the vehicles offered by AMS Vans as they already come equipped with the system that expands the ramp 4 inches. This feature makes this vehicle to stand out on the market.
Even though the cars are cheaper, better on gas and have lower insurance cost, making one accessible for a wheelchair might be challenging. Either you will be investing lots of money in additional features, or you will put yourself at risk as the cars are very low.
Surprisingly enough, motorcycles can also be accommodated for a wheelchair. If you are willing to try it out, you can:
- Buy an additional packages to drive from their chair,
- Modify it so you can slide from the wheelchair right into the seat, storages in the lift, mounted to the back of the motorcycle,
- Ride in their chair in a sidecar.
With a motorcycle you have to always keep in mind that it is not a vehicle for all the seasons. In addition to that, motorcycles have a bad reputation for the most horrible accidents due to the fact that the driver is not surrounded by the metal cabin like in the car. Plus it is a vehicle for one person and a passenger only.