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Thread: Does such a car exist?

  1. #1

    Does such a car exist?

    I'm trying to think of a car with the following features for a disabled user. It seems like an impossible combination, but maybe there is a compromise.

    The person needs to keep his legs as horizontal as possible. Like in a sports car. But it can't be a sports car because it needs a smooth ride and it needs to be easy to get in and out of. The driver seat should be comfortable. Automatic transmission.

    The car should be able to hold a wheel chair. The wheel chair should be fairly easy to take out and put back. Not because this person can't walk or because his legs are limited in any way. He has circulation problems and standing causes not enough blood to reach the heart. And it can't be a van because then his legs won't be out in front.

    The engine should not be loud, although ultimate luxury car quiteness is not required. No need for a muscle engine, but it should not be wimpy.

    Gas mileage is a non-issue. Price can go up to $30,000, although less would be better. For use in California.

  2. #2
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew B. View Post
    I'm trying to think of a car with the following features for a disabled user. It seems like an impossible combination, but maybe there is a compromise.

    The person needs to keep his legs as horizontal as possible. Like in a sports car. But it can't be a sports car because it needs a smooth ride and it needs to be easy to get in and out of. The driver seat should be comfortable. Automatic transmission.

    The car should be able to hold a wheel chair. The wheel chair should be fairly easy to take out and put back. Not because this person can't walk or because his legs are limited in any way. He has circulation problems and standing causes not enough blood to reach the heart. And it can't be a van because then his legs won't be out in front.

    The engine should not be loud, although ultimate luxury car quiteness is not required. No need for a muscle engine, but it should not be wimpy.

    Gas mileage is a non-issue. Price can go up to $30,000, although less would be better. For use in California.
    Andrew,

    I have a contender for you: The Ford Transit Connect. Though Ford doesn't market this as a handicap vehicle, I think it is ideally suited. It has a larger and more accessible cargo area to store a wheelchair than a minivan or conventional van (let alone an SUV); you could literally ride in and out with a small ramp. And the way the interior is configured, you could probably go directly from your chair to the driver's seat.

    The doorside step-in height for the driver, as well as the seating position, are both very comfortable for people with limited mobility. (My elderly neighbor commented on this when I had one to test drive a few weeks back.)

    The thing is very easy to drive and maneuver and you can park it anywhere a compact car will fit. I am certain it could be fitted with hand controls, if you needed that.

    Best of all, it only costs about $22k.

    Here's my write up...

    http://ericpetersautos.com/?p=594

  3. #3
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    My new Mercury Mountaineer, with the 'Limited' package and adjustable pedals and seats, plus optional power running boards, almost fits the specification. Explorers with power running boards cost more because of multiple required trim levels.
    Dealers are probably anxious to unload their Mercurys now, but any you find will probably have a nav system, so you'd have a hard time meeting the price spec.

    It _is_ quiet and comfortable, and the six is plenty strong.


    I agree that the Ford Transit Connect is probably a great choice if you need to drive from the wheelchair, but I didn't read that into the specification. I have seen a few that were customized like vans, so they don't _have_ to look like breadboxes.

  4. #4
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    I'm trying to think of a car with the following features for a disabled user. It seems like an impossible combination, but maybe there is a compromise.
    You can also plug "car disabled driver" into Google!

  5. #5
    Thanks for the suggestions. I'll look into them.

    And I did try Google. Lots of disabled and auto information, but none that applies. The primary concern is legs as horizontal as possible. I know a woman who drives a Miata for this reason. But the Miata doesn't give the other advantages.

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