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Thread: As an SCI in a manual chair that transfers which 2019 vehicle would you go for or not

  1. #1
    Senior Member NW-Will's Avatar
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    As an SCI in a manual chair that transfers which 2019 vehicle would you go for or not

    Starting this thread to talk about the actual vehicles that are available in 2019 that work well for folks in manual chairs that transfer into the vehicle and have the chair stowed for them, or they breakdown themselves to drive etc...

    For the past 11 years had wife's 2006 honda crv has worked particular well for us... apart from the fact that Honda's don't go forever, only 147,000 miles and everything is going on the engine, even though it was serviced on schedule only at a Honda dealer for it's entire life. I was banking on squeezing a few more years out of it, and maybe 200,000 miles.. but not to be.

    Things to consider about my specific chair
    My manual Tilite TR
    is rolling 27" wheels,
    and with the wheels on is.
    30" wide.
    40" long.
    36" high.

    Things that worked well with the 2006 CRV for me.
    The chair could be lifted into the back complete and sat on it's wheels and sit in the back and still sit 5 people in the car.
    The front doors have a large enough opening to make transferring easy and allow me to break down the chair and wheels and get it all on the passenger seat with no issues.
    The height of the driver/passenger seat was just right, when transferring from the ground it was easy enough as there were some well place grab handles.
    Due to the height transferring from a 6" curbed sidewalk was also trivial, you're not so low in the car that getting up to your wheelchair seat was a major issue etc.
    Grab handles, nice low one in the center of the front passenger area was excellent for pulling from the passenger side, plus the usual ones above your head by the door etc.
    Emergency hand brake, was hand operated in the center, not one of those foot ones.
    The gearshift was on the column, never realized how awesome this was till trying other new cars.
    No center console or gear shift in the center on the floor, so transferring from the drivers seat to the passenger seat and vice versa is easy.
    Rear door is hinged on the side, so easy for some one in a chair to open close and get access to etc.
    Carries 5 people and a chair and is pretty compact.
    All wheel drive.

    The biggest negative, was it's a pretty loud ride.

    So far looked at
    Kia Sorento - Front door opening are pretty narrow - Chair will only fit in the back on it's side - it's a pretty big vehicle considering.

    Nissan Rogue - chair wouldn't fit in the back
    Nissan Mujrano - chair wouldn't fit in the back, but was a really easy car to transfer into and out of.
    Nissan Pathfinder - chair only fits in on it's side. again seemed like a pretty big vehicle on the outside for no great gain on the inside.

    Mitsubishi outlander - chair only fits in the back on it's side. Again was pretty tight on the inside considering how big it was on the outside.

    Toyota Rav4 - Chair only fits in on it's side, but was so close.
    Toyota highlander - Chair only fits in on it's side
    Toyota pathfinder - Chair only fits in on it's side
    Toyota Sienna (minivan) - acres of space! would have to bungy the chair down! has a 4 wheel drive option! no center console transferring between drivers seat and passenger seat possible, gear shift is classic style but up on the dash keeping the floor clear. Seats are lower than I'd like, plus the body work pushes you away from the car leaving a bit of canyon to transfer across. Good visibility.

    Honda CRV - chair fits in the back again! Huge center console so no transferring between driver and passenger seat, no good grab handles, gear shift back on the floor ! Back to a regular lift up hatch rear door! From our statistical study, be lucky to get 150,000 miles out of it.

    It's looking like we're going to end up with a minivan.

    So far all it's done is compound how great the 2006 CRV worked for us.

    Next to check out : Hyundai, Kai, Mercedes, Ford, Subaru, Volvo.

    thoughts? missed any obvious ones ?

    If you have top tips about buying a new vehicle as a manual wheelchair user who transfers, I started a different thread.
    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...-who-transfers

  2. #2
    I have two cars that I transfer easliy into and ride w/ the vehicle in the passenger seat.

    - 2018 Prius Four Touring (can put chair in back and ride w/ 3 adults plus stuff.
    - 2016 Mini Cooper S. - easier car ever to get in and out of. Lots of room to put the chair in the passenger set. Not so good w/ passengers.

  3. #3
    My 2 cents I have had 2006 and 2011 Murano's You are right they are transfer friendly and i really liked the seat the ride etc. i recently just switched to a drive from chair vehicle (lots of heartache) it seems I really struggle with change so keep that in mind there will probably be things you don't like as well as your 06 but you are smart to do the research.

    Just for fun check out the Ford Flex it's transfer friendly and handles pretty nice, ( i rent one occasionally) it only looks a little bit weird...

  4. #4
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    I'm trying to picture how a CRV made a good wheelchair car, and cant. I actually looked at one when searching for a replacement for my winter beater and the transfer and chair breaking down routine looked like a real headache. Since you seem to prefer non-'Murican vehicles...perhaps a Honda Accord Coupe would be something to look at. Yes, they stopped making them in '17, but that just means you can get a low miles example with a CPO warranty for 1/2 price of new. Lots of room to transfer, and break down the chair. Probably wont fit 5 people in one, but could you really do that in a CRV without it looking like something part of a Central American Caravan? Anyway, something to consider.

    Of course there is the famous Dodge Challenger in all sorts of flavors ranging from 4x4 to 800+HP versions available new. Interestingly, the Honda Accord coupe actually has a bit more wheelchair room in comparison despite being the smaller car. And then there is the Lexus RC series and possibly Infiniti's Q60? or whatever bizarre naming scheme they are using now for their coupes (keeping in mind it is still a sketchy Nissan)

  5. #5
    Senior Member NW-Will's Avatar
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    I haven't tried these yet, but as they're regular cars they tend to sit so low, so when you have to transfer when you're parked next to a 6" curb. I struggle getting into my wheelchair sitting on the sidewalk. That's why I like the SUV's they sit so high that when you're parked next to the 6" curbed sidewalk it's an easy transfer. just my issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by t8burst View Post
    I have two cars that I transfer easliy into and ride w/ the vehicle in the passenger seat.

    - 2018 Prius Four Touring (can put chair in back and ride w/ 3 adults plus stuff.
    - 2016 Mini Cooper S. - easier car ever to get in and out of. Lots of room to put the chair in the passenger set. Not so good w/ passengers.

  6. #6
    Senior Member NW-Will's Avatar
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    The regular cars all seems to sit too low for me, fine when I transfer on to the roadside, but if I transfer on the sidewalk side it's just a hassle, getting my fat ass from the car all the way up to the wheelchair on the sidewalk etc.
    Don't care where the cars are made to be honest.
    I only like that one model of CRV... the one's that came after I am no fan of, they removed all the things I liked about it..
    Ok when I say 5 people, that was 4 adults and one child, considering the size of the vehicle it held up real well.
    Did do a tour of yellowstone one year from Seattle with 4 adults my chair and bathroom stuff plus luggage.

    Being pragmatic it's looking like a mini-van at this point!

    Quote Originally Posted by Andy View Post
    I'm trying to picture how a CRV made a good wheelchair car, and cant. I actually looked at one when searching for a replacement for my winter beater and the transfer and chair breaking down routine looked like a real headache. Since you seem to prefer non-'Murican vehicles...perhaps a Honda Accord Coupe would be something to look at. Yes, they stopped making them in '17, but that just means you can get a low miles example with a CPO warranty for 1/2 price of new. Lots of room to transfer, and break down the chair. Probably wont fit 5 people in one, but could you really do that in a CRV without it looking like something part of a Central American Caravan? Anyway, something to consider.

    Of course there is the famous Dodge Challenger in all sorts of flavors ranging from 4x4 to 800+HP versions available new. Interestingly, the Honda Accord coupe actually has a bit more wheelchair room in comparison despite being the smaller car. And then there is the Lexus RC series and possibly Infiniti's Q60? or whatever bizarre naming scheme they are using now for their coupes (keeping in mind it is still a sketchy Nissan)

  7. #7
    Senior Member NW-Will's Avatar
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    That Ford Flex looks interesting and it has an AWD option.

    Quote Originally Posted by pete4sake View Post
    My 2 cents I have had 2006 and 2011 Murano's You are right they are transfer friendly and i really liked the seat the ride etc. i recently just switched to a drive from chair vehicle (lots of heartache) it seems I really struggle with change so keep that in mind there will probably be things you don't like as well as your 06 but you are smart to do the research.

    Just for fun check out the Ford Flex it's transfer friendly and handles pretty nice, ( i rent one occasionally) it only looks a little bit weird...

  8. #8
    Senior Member Andy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NW-Will View Post
    Being pragmatic it's looking like a mini-van at this point!
    I can see curb transfers getting strange. I only transfer in garages and parking lots, different types of locales I guess.

    Now for a real useful wheelchair mobile...check out the Ford Transit Connect. Near level transfer, great driving position, and if you get the long wheelbase version, whole wheelchair stowage behind the driver's seat through the side door. Just add a rope or whatever to pull the side door closed. Much more level transfer that the current crop of more common minivans out there, and probably like 30K for a fully loaded XLT model with full windows all around

  9. #9
    Hi check out Adaptsolutions Speedylift for your chair in a Sienna. I just bought a 2019 Braun Sienna SE. I came out of a 2014 Volvo XC70 T6 great car. It’s out of production now and the only one that has the headroom in back to take your chair upright is an XC90.

    To the Sienna, drives nice, the 8 speed tranny is busy but smooth. It has good power when spun up. Old school parking brake, least liked item about it. It has the most luggage space behind the 3rd row between the Honda / Chrysler. Only AWD option, that eliminates the spare, it comes on run flats but they’re not held in high regard. Mine has the high end Navi / JBL combo, 2019 has Apple CarPlay.

    I have Suregrip Featherlite Push Pulls on the right side, I like them the story of the install with the dealer is for another day. I still can’t believe it. I can push brake and hit start button one handed which is nice, shift is right brake, left shift really no big deal. I agree with Andy the Trasit Connect is worth a look.
    Please ask any questions you want.

  10. #10
    Your CRV is definitely the exception in only lasting 147k miles. I wouldn't let that stop you from getting another one. Every honda I've ever had lasted forever. I was going to suggest a hatchback car, until you mentioned transferring to a sidewalk. In 7 years I've never transferred out of my car onto a sidewalk (plus my cars lowered 2"). My VW GTI has been the ideal car for my needs. Its four doors, chair fits in the front seat or in the hatch, turbo, good gas mileage, lightweight, paddle shifters, etc.

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