2021 Wheelchair Vehicle Report: New, Discontinued & Popular Models
When it comes to wheelchair accessible vehicles, it can be hard to keep up with what’s current. New models are introduced every year, and old models are phased out.
Making it even more difficult to know what’s going on in the mobility industry, different manufacturers and dealers will have different makes and models available. Each model will also have different options and configurations, which is enough to make anyone’s head spin.
Although compiling an exhaustive list of every wheelchair vehicle that’s ever been on the market would be a monumental task, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to pick some of the most relevant models to talk about in 2021. Here’s some of the trending vehicles that we’ve noticed at Freedom Motors USA.
New Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles in 2021
First on the list, we’ll take a look at some of the up-and-coming models. These vehicles are newer to the market, which means finding information about their wheelchair accessible conversions can be tough.
Newer models can be a little pricier than older ones, but that comes with less frequent maintenance and a warranty that can provide peace of mind. They’ll also hold their value better than an older model when it comes time to trade in for the next one.
All that being said, here’s some of the new models that we think are worth keeping an eye on.
2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid
The 2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid is a glimpse into the future of not only wheelchair accessible vehicles, but also the auto industry as a whole. Not only that, but it’s the first no-charger-required Toyota hybrid vehicle to be converted for wheelchair accessibility, made possible by the Freedom Motors team of engineers and technicians.
It’s seriously impressive. It’s no-charge hybrid drivetrain makes it incredibly efficient, with an estimated average 36 mpg. On top of it’s great performance, it has an interior cabin experience that leaves it feeling like a luxury SUV more than a van. We could write about this van all day, but there’s other cars to get to on this list. If any of this sounds as incredible to you as it does to us, click here to go check out the 2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid specs.
Starting production in 2019, the Kia Telluride is still relatively new to the market. That being said, it’s already made a big impression in that time, scoring two separate 10Best awards from the popular auto magazine Car and Driver, something that most models wouldn’t hope to do in 10 years.
Even at a glance, it’s no wonder that the Telluride has become Kia’s flagship SUV. It’s got a laundry list of features that would make a Range Rover nervous with a price tag that won’t make you nervous. It’s also incredibly stylish, so much so that Kia has transformed their 2021 Sorento models to emulate the Telluride’s look.
The Telluride delivers all this while having an incredibly spacious interior cabin that makes it perfect for a wheelchair accessible conversion. The Telluride continues to impress, and it’s certainly worth keeping in mind.
In 2020, the Chrysler Voyager returned for the first time since it’s absence in 2008. This sixth-generation Voyager isn’t exactly a new or redesigned offering, and is instead just a rebadge of the lower Chrysler Pacifica trim-levels.
Basically, the Voyager is a Pacifica in all but name. The Voyager will be replacing the L and LX trims of the Pacifica, making the Voyager a great choice for those looking for an affordable wheelchair van after the discontinuation of the Dodge Grand Caravan.
Popular Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles in 2021
These next models on the list are ones that have established themselves in the wheelchair accessible vehicle market. Whether it be because of their great value, features or spacious interior, these vehicles have proved to be popular wheelchair vehicles.
Kia’s SUV lineup has markedly improved over the years, with the new Telluride being a culmination of their efforts. However, this doesn’t mean their previous models have suffered.
On the contrary, the Soul and Sorento are looking better than ever. The Soul received a redesign in 2020 that helped it ditch it’s cutesy aesthetic in favor of a meaner, bolder and sportier look that’s more in line with a traditional SUV style.
The Sorento has always looked sporty and never really lacked in the style department. At least, that’s what we thought before it’s 2021 redesign. The new design takes several visual cues from the Telluride and completely blows the old design out of the water. The new design is slick, savvy and makes the old design look pedestrian in comparison.
We definitely like where Kia is going with their SUVs. Best of all, they’ve been great wheelchair SUVs throughout all their design iterations. Spacious interiors, stylish exteriors and fantastic performance means these models continue to be popular.
Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave
Two sides of the same coin, the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave have both proven their worth as wheelchair accessible SUVs. They provide everything you want in an SUV, without sacrificing interior space or comfort for wheelchair passengers.
Packed with premium features, the models are fairly similar in terms of specs. The main differences buyers will find are exterior styling and the interior look. Which is better mostly comes down to personal preference. The Traverse comes with the classic Chevy look that’s as rugged as it is American. Meanwhile, the Buick provides a slick exterior and refined interior, with faux wood paneling and several styles of leather upholstery.
Discontinued Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles in 2021
In with the new, out with the old.
At least, that’s what they say. When it comes to wheelchair accessible vehicles, older models can stick around for a while on the market even after production has ceased. This can happen for a variety of reasons, whether it be market saturation or that specific model may have been more popular due to some of the features it had.
While older models can be tempting because of their low price tag, it’s sometimes better to invest in a newer car. Older models are more likely to have high mileage, need repairs more frequently and aren’t covered by a warranty. Not only are newer models less road-weary, they hold their value better when it comes time to trade them in.
We’ve already gone over what’s up and coming, so let’s take a look at what’s on the way out. Here are a few of the models that have come and gone at Freedom Motors.
Dodge Grand Caravan
It was sad to see the Dodge Grand Caravan go. Even though the last Grand Caravan rolled off the assembly line in May 2020, it remains a popular model in the accessible vehicle market. For good reason, too. Shortly after it’s introduction to the market as the first minivan in 1983, Freedom Motors founder Anthony van Dillen converted it for wheelchair accessibility in 1987.
It remains a popular model for commercial paratransit and non-emergency medical transport use, as it’s size allows for several seating configurations allowing for stretchers, multiple wheelchairs, or many ambulatory passengers.
In the coming years, it will only get harder to find a Grand Caravan. Luckily, those looking for alternatives have plenty of options. The closest analog on the market now is probably the Chrysler Voyager, which is similarly priced and offers similar features.
The Honda Element was discontinued in 2011, but we still get asked about it frequently. It’s developed quite the loyal following for what it is. A compact SUV with quirky styling, spacious interior and a focus on practicality. It’s unique 4-door setup also meant that it could be outfitted with a side-entry ramp.
Although it’s only available with a rear-entry ramp, the Kia Soul checks most of the boxes that the Element did. Unique compact size, outside-the-box styling and a surprisingly roomy interior make the Soul a great replacement for the Element. In many cases, the rear-entry ramp makes parking and accessing the vehicle easier because it only requires space behind the car instead of on either side.
For those still looking for a Honda or perhaps just a compact SUV with more traditional styling, there’s the Honda HR-V. The HR-V trades “quirky” for “sporty and slick” when it comes to its look while maintaining a small profile.
We’re hopeful that Honda will see what made the Element beloved to so many and begin production on a similar model, but in the meantime the Kia Soul and Honda HR-V make good alternatives.
Honda Pilot & Honda Odyssey
The Honda Pilot and Honda Odyssey are both vehicles that Freedom Motors used to convert for wheelchair accessibility in the past. Although we don’t convert them anymore, there’s plenty of alternatives for both.
The Honda Pilot is a great SUV that has plenty of features at an affordable price. If the affordable price tag is what makes the Pilot attractive, consider taking a look at the similarly priced Chevrolet Traverse or Kia Sorento. If you’re looking for an SUV with more luxury features, the Buick Enclave is the way to go. If you like the Honda styling and would consider a more compact SUV, definitely check out the Honda HR-V.
The Honda Odyssey is an affordable van that lends itself well to wheelchair accessibility. If you’re looking for similarly priced options, check out the Chrysler Voyager and Dodge Grand Caravan. If you’re willing to spend a little more for extra features, the Toyota Sienna and Chrysler Pacifica offer a premium van experience.
Find the Right Vehicle for You
While this is by no means a complete list of every wheelchair accessible vehicle on the market, it does outline some of the models Freedom Motors deals with most frequently. Hopefully this list can help point you in the right direction
Of course, Freedom Motors has a team of mobility specialists ready to help you find the right vehicle for you. Give us a call and let us know about your situation and what features are important to you. You can even shop from home and have your vehicle delivered to you.
About Freedom Motors USA Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles
Why buy your wheelchair accessible vehicle from Freedom Motors USA? It’s simple. Freedom Motors is family-owned and has been creating accessible vehicle conversions since 1987, making us one of the first companies in the industry. We have experience getting our customers what they need.
- Don’t know where to start? Our team of Mobility Specialists will work with you to help find the vehicle that best suits your needs.
- Shop from Home – Freedom Motors will come to you anywhere in the country to provide a demonstration of any of our wheelchair conversions.
- Exclusive Stock – Shop our expansive list of rear-entry accessible SUVs that you won’t find anywhere else in the mobility industry, including the Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, Kia Sorento, Kia Soul, Kia Telluride and Honda HR-V.
- Hybrid Vehicles – Check out the industry’s first 2021 Toyota Sienna Hybrid wheelchair-accessible conversion, with a no-charge hybrid drivetrain making it the most efficient wheelchair van on the market.
- Premium Features – Freedom Motors conversions offer top-of-the-line features, like the automatic rear-entry ramp or our full and half-cut options that allow for more passenger seating options.
- Superwide Ramps – Freedom Motors offers some of the widest ramps in the industry that you won’t find anywhere else, including the Superwide 40” Dodge Grand Caravan and the Superwide 48” Toyota Sienna.
- Dedicated to Keeping You Moving – Contact us today and we’ll work with you to find the right vehicle for you.