A side-entry van gives extra room for maneuverability because either the entire floor of the vehicle is lowered or just a portion, depending on the type of vehicle.
A wheelchair user can typically drive or ride in the 1st row position (does not apply in the CompanionVan). Wheelchair users can also ride securely in the 2nd row position. If you live in an area with plenty of handicap or parallel parking, the side-entry is a good fit because it requires extra space for the ramp to deploy.
Side-entry vehicles maintain the rear cargo storage space behind the third row seating.
A foldout ramp allows you to drive next to a curb and deploy ramp over the curb for easy entry and exit. In case of an emergency, a wheelchair user can always push a foldout ramp out until it deploys fully.
Because the ramp is stored upright, less debris is trapped and results in fewer ramp maintenance issues. Keep in mind, in order to enter or exit on the ramp side of the vehicle, the ramp must be deployed.
A lot has changed over the last 40 years, but not the values that have shaped us from the very beginning. See what makes BraunAbility the trusted mobility provider for millions of people with physical disabilities around the world.
In a rear-entry vehicle, the wheelchair user rides in a channel installed in the middle of the floor, from the 2nd row to the rear of the vehicle.
A rear-entry vehicle offers plenty of ground clearance because most of the van’s floor has not been modified, and the rear of the vehicle is slightly elevated.
If you live in an area that lacks handicap parking spaces or if your garage is too narrow for a side-entry van, you might need a rear entry van.
A rear-entry vehicle is typically less expensive to convert.
With no ramp in the doorway, passengers who are not in wheelchairs can enter and exit the vehicle without having to deploy the ramp. Out of sight, out of mind! An infloor ramp is completely concealed, so the interior looks closer than ever to that of a standard minivan.
Keep in mind, deploying an infloor ramp onto a high curb could be a problem. Also, an infloor ramp may require more maintenance because the ramp tends to collect more debris.