The majority of us are really lucky: We have the choice to just hop in our cars and go! Unfortunately, I have a few family members and friends who aren’t so lucky. Whether due to an accident (surfing, for one of my friends) or a debilitating health issue, some individuals need to rely on a wheelchair for their daily activities.
If you’ve ever had to use a wheelchair, for even a short amount of time, you begin to see how incredibly difficult and inaccessible a lot of businesses or destinations can be. Frustrating! If you’re in it for the long haul, it can get to be a daily issue. My always-aware buddy at my favorite greater Los Angeles Ford store in Chino Hills gave me a call the other day and let me know that they’ve added to their lineup of wheelchair-accessible vehicles! Ford has teamed up with BraunAbility to customize the Ford Explorer, giving the world its very first wheelchair-accessible SUV! Here’s how the partnership came about:
“For our first-ever wheelchair-accessible SUV, it was important we worked with the best,” said Nick Gutwein, BraunAbility president and CEO. “We wanted to create a vehicle that personifies freedom and independence, and the Ford Explorer provides the ultimate base to achieve that.”
“BraunAbility scoured the popular SUV segment in search of the right vehicle before settling on Ford Explorer – the best-selling SUV in the U.S. for the last 25 years.”
A wheelchair-accessible SUV like the Ford Explorer is HUGE for a couple of reasons:
You Can Go Camping
Just because someone is in a wheelchair, it doesn’t mean that they’ve lost the ability to drive, or the love of the outdoors. Most wheelchair-accessible vans or transport vehicles aren’t meant to traverse rocky terrain or dirt paths, but the Ford Explorer definitely can!
You Can Tow Your Boat
Again, most people overlook the fact that just because someone in a wheelchair doesn’t mean they don’t like going out on the lake for a relaxing boat ride. Heck, they may even be avid fishermen. There’s no reason they have to ask their friends to tow the boat for them when their own Ford Explorer will do just fine!
You know the Ford Explorer, on its own, is a comfortable ride. Perfect for family outings. Well, the BraunAbility accessible Ford Explorer has the same level of comfort, coupled with the ability to make sure the person using it can get in and out with ease:
“Innovative sliding-door technology and the lighted, in-floor ramp are highlights, but they are just two of the features that make this a uniquely accommodating ride. Wheelchair users will be able to drive the vehicle from a wheelchair, or ride as a passenger. Additional features include:
- 54-inch door height
- 28-inch ramp width
- Sliding shifter for increased space
- Space-saving front seat base design
- Integrated key fob that operates both door and ramp
- Available tow package
- Transfer seat capable
With Explorer’s middle-row seat removed, the BraunAbility MXV provides interior space to fit the most common power wheelchair models, and its 56-inch cabin height provides a spacious interior for a comfortable ride.”
I’ve already let my family members know to check in at Chino Hills Ford to see when they can expect to be able to learn more about this innovative wheelchair-accessible Ford Explorer! But hey, if you’re just looking for an everyday vehicle, check out their newest Ford inventory in Los Angeles. You may find just the wheelchair-accessible 2016 Ford Explorer you need! And, if you find it, but don’t want to cough up all that cash at once, no problem. Their Ford financing options include plenty of Ford AXZ Plan incentives and other deals to make things easy on your wallet!