Finding great cars for handicapped individuals who need a wheelchair type of mobility can be quite a challenge. For those without disabilities, getting a car is a relatively simple process of picking out the type of car one likes and buying it. In many cases, the vehicle purchased will need to have expensive conversions made in order to make it accessible.
Meeting the Needs of the Handicapped
When purchasing a vehicle that will either carry or be driven by a handicapped individual, there are many needs that should be taken into account. There must be enough space to accommodate a wheelchair or scooter if one is necessary. In fact, space is of much greater importance to the handicapped community than to the general population, not only because of the need for medical equipment, but also to make any necessary conversions. It is also important to get a reliable vehicle, since the handicapped may have more doctor visits on the average than many others. Parents of handicapped children will be especially comforted by a vehicle they can get into quickly and easily in the event of an emergency.
Typically a handicapped individual or the family of a handicapped individual will purchase a vehicle and have the necessary conversions installed by a specialist. Some of the seats will need to be adjusted in a handicapped vehicle, especially if the driver needs assistance. Other types of adjustments include lifts or ramps to allow a wheelchair to exit the vehicle. The amount of conversions necessary is typically merited by the severity of the individual’s disability.
Ford Econoline and Windstar
Since you will have to convert the vehicle, finding a great car for the handicapped usually means purchasing a van. Two companies that offer a series of vans that can be adjusted to fit the needs of the handicapped are Ford and Chevrolet. A very popular type of Ford van within the handicapped community is the Econoline. The Ford Econoline comes in a variety of sizes to meet those needs. Because it is a full sized van, is very easy to make the necessary conversions. Another van by Ford that can be used by members of the handicapped community looking to invest in something smaller is the Windstar. The Ford Windstar is a minivan. It is much smaller than the Econoline, but spacious enough for usage by many members of the handicapped community. The Windstar is typically available at a lower price and uses less gas than its full-sized counterpart.
Chevrolet Express, Uplander, Caravan, and Van Wagon
Chevrolet offers a variety of vans that can be converted for use by the handicapped. The Chevrolet van is in fact one of the most popular types of vehicles for conversion. The full-sized Chevy van known as the Express comes in a variety of different models and is the type most often purchased. The large space makes it perfect for conversions. Other Chevy vans preferred by the handicapped are the large Uplander, the Van Wagon and the Caravan. Chevrolet vans are widely known for their large size and easy ability to convert. It is easy to find a used Chevrolet van that has already been converted. This can save thousands of dollars.
Finding a great car isn’t always as easy for the handicapped as it is for the majority. Though, thanks to manufacturers like Ford and Chevy, there are many different vans on the market that will meet these needs. Because of the quality of these vehicles, it is often possible to find a quality used van that has already been converted. This can save the average handicapped family over $10,000. There are many classified websites that specialize in reselling previously converted vans for low prices. This makes finding a van for the handicapped much easier that it was at one time.