Accessible Hybrid Sienna: Rear-Entry vs. Side Entry

October 22nd, 2021 by

A green wheelchair accessible rear-entry Toyota Sienna Hybrid from Freedom Motors USA.

The Toyota Sienna Hybrid is the latest development in the wheelchair accessible vehicle industry. In 2021, Toyota redesigned the Sienna from the ground up. A new exterior gives the vehicle a sporty look, while the interior maximizes the usable space while providing the feel of a luxury vehicle. 

The biggest change has come to the Sienna’s drivetrain. The 2021 model sports a fully Hybrid, no-charge drivetrain that allows for up to 36 mpg, making it the most efficient wheelchair accessible vehicle on the market. Plus, it’s no-charge design means there’s no need for a costly and time consuming electric vehicle charger installation.

Side-Entry versus Rear-Entry: Which is Best?

The Toyota Sienna Hybrid is available as a rear-entry conversion from Freedom Motors USA, while other manufacturers offer a side-entry conversion. Both have their own advantages, so it’s important to see which will work best for your needs.

A BraunAbility side-entry Pacifica conversion that requires space next to the vehicle to enter.

The BraunAbility side-entry Pacifica conversion, shown above, requires several feet of space next to the vehicle to enter or exit. 

Side-entry conversions are a more “traditional” accessible vehicle experience. These vehicles have a ramp that deploys from the side of the vehicle, which means you’ll likely need to park in a designated disability parking space to provide the ramp room to deploy. This can limit your options in crowded parking lots, but it can be useful for big cities where parallel parking is more common.

Rear-entry conversions are a more modern style of ramp pioneered by Freedom Motors. In this configuration, wheelchair passengers enter and exit through the back hatch of the vehicle, with the wheelchair sitting in the second row of seating (or third on half-cut conversions). This design allows for the most space for wheelchair users accessing the vehicle, and ensures the ramp is accessible anywhere as long as the rear of the vehicle is not blocked. This design is perfect for parking lots where disability parking may be limited, as there is no extra space needed to the sides of the vehicle for the ramp to deploy.

Read More:

Guide To Wheelchair Ramps in Handicap Converted Vehicles

Freedom Motors USA Rear-Entry BraunAbility Side-Entry
Conversion Location Rear Hatchback Second Row Sliding Door
Hybrid System Alterations None Multiple including moving the battery
Door Opening Width 40″ 31″
Door Opening Height 56″ 56″
Ramp Width 40” 29.25″
Ramp Length 56″ 52″
Ground Clearance 8.75″ 5”

The Freedom Motors rear-entry Sienna Hybrid offers nearly 10” inches of additional width at the door opening and over an additional 10” of ramp width, making it easy for even large electric wheelchairs to access the vehicle. The Freedom Motors model also sports an additional 3.75” of ground clearance, giving you peace of mind when encountering obstacles in your day-to-day driving.

It’s also worth considering how the vehicles are designed. The Freedom Motors rear-entry conversion requires less extensive modifications to the vehicle, meaning it’s as close to the OEM design as possible. This leaves you with the front passenger cabin area completely original, with the center console being completely OEM. 

Side-entry models require extensive modifications to the vehicle be made, including in the front passenger cabin. The center console is removed and reworked, meaning you may not receive all the functionality of the OEM design. Side-entry models also move the hybrid battery systems to the rear of the vehicle from the front, meaning that you will lose OEM reliability. 

white wheelchair accessible 2021 toyota sienna hybrid rear entry

What OEM Features are available?

Because they both use the Sienna Hybrid as a base model, most of the luxury features that come with the model will be available on both conversions. Some of the available features include:

  • Efficient 243-Horsepower 2.5-Liter 4-Cylinder Hybrid
  • 9-Inch Toyota Entune™ 3.0 Touchscreen
  • WiFi hotspot
  • Backup camera
  • Tri-zone automatic climate control
  • Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 package
  • Satellite radio
  • Blind spot monitoring and proximity keyless entry options

Premium upholstery, tri-zone climate control and satellite radio provide a comfortable cabin for drivers and passengers. Blind spot monitoring, keyless entry and a backup camera make day-to-day driving a breeze. 

The Freedom Motors USA Advantage

Freedom Motors offers the most reliable conversion on the market, with extra effort taken to make it as stable as possible. Our engineers have crafted our conversions to alter the OEM engineering and design as little as possible, allowing you to drive a vehicle that’s dependable and close to the original OEM experience. 

We take pride in not only offering the best products in the mobility market, but also providing the best service. We’ve been converting all of our vehicles using our own parts right here in Battle Creek, Michigan since we first converted the Dodge Grand Caravan in 1987. We are confident in our design and all of our vehicles come with a 36 month (three years) or 36,000 mile warranty.

We offer or will soon be offering options of automatic or manual ramps on all of our vehicles, allowing you to pick a conversion that best suits your needs. We also have many seating arrangements and options available, allowing you to customize our vehicles however you’d like. Talk to one of our Mobility Specialists today to find out how we can help you get the accessible vehicle you deserve.

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 exclusive 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.
  • Premium Features – Freedom Motors conversions offer features you won’t find anywhere else, like the exclusive 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.