Filipinos are at heart a family-oriented country, as much as possible we try to make sure everyone gets involved especially during road trips out of town. However, things can get challenging when you have a mobility-challenged family member. With that in mind, we have created a quick list of vehicles available in the Philippines now that are PWD-friendly.
The vehicles mentioned either come with wide opening doors that add convenience to the ingress and egress of passengers or with a PWD-specific feature that makes it even easier for these individuals to get in and out of the vehicle. Aside from this, the ability of the vehicle to store a wheelchair without impeding into the cabin space will also be considered as it is a vital tool to help bring back mobility to those who are less able.
Taking the top spot on the list is the Maxus G10 as it is the only vehicle in the country that has a PWD assist feature that is ready with the vehicle straight from the showroom floor. Aside from having sliding doors that make ingress and egress from the vehicle a much easier process, the minivan also has an electric-powered seat.
This is no ordinary electric seat as it can physically exit and enter the vehicle with a press of a button. While it may take some time to exit and then re-enter the vehicle, it’s a smooth process that someone with limited mobility will surely appreciate. It also helps that the seat comes in the form of a captain’s chair with armrests on either side, which helps secure the passenger when the seat is moving. To add to this it can also be used as a secure platform for the person with limited mobility to get onto their wheelchair. Speaking of wheelchairs, the G10 also comes with plenty of room at the rear of the vehicle to store said device even with the third-row seats up. That said, this is an ideal vehicle to get if you have a PWD family member who has limited mobility at a relatively affordable price if it’s equipped with this option.
While the Honda CR-V does not come with a PWD assistance device as convenient or as complex as what is available in the Maxus G10, it does come with a unique feature that the mobility challenged will surely appreciate. Being the only crossover to make it onto this list, the CR-V comes with a unique party trick that makes it easier to enter and exit the vehicle.
Honda has designed the crossover to come with wide-opening rear doors. This allows the doors to open at an almost 90-degree angle giving more room for passengers when they want to exit or enter the vehicle. This is an especially handy feature to have if you have someone with limited mobility who will need all the space possible to quickly transition them onto a wheelchair. Similar to the other vehicles on this list, cargo space isn’t a problem as a wheelchair can easily be stowed away at the back of the crossover. This is an ideal choice for those looking to get a PWD-friendly vehicle but does not want to commit to either an MPV or to a minivan.
A similar case to the CR-V, the GAC GN6 doesn’t come with a fancy assist feature for those who are mobility challenged. Instead what it offers is a great amount of space and comfort for those who will be riding in the second row. In fact, this is one of the most comfortable places to be inside the vehicle. While the doors don’t open as wide as other vehicles, it’s still wide and sturdy enough to act as a platform for the mobility challenged to easily transition to a wheelchair or personal mobility device.
Even with all occupants accounted for, the GN6 comes with a neat party trick that will make the storage of a wheelchair an easy task. The MPV has a low floor behind the third-row seats which makes loading and unloading of a wheelchair much more convenient process as it does not impede cabin space nor with the view outside the rear window. It also comes with an affordable price tag as well sitting just a little shy of the P1,500,000 mark.
Toyota Hiace Super Grandia Elite
If comfort with a touch of luxury is what you are after in a PWD-friendly vehicle then the Toyota Hiace Super Grandia Elite is another great option. While there are no PWD assist features available for this model straight from the dealership, it does have a comfortable and luxurious interior that will be appreciated. To add to this the easy-to-use power sliding doors on either side of the minivan make it easy to exit and enter the vehicle adding to the convenience of transitioning a mobility-challenged passenger to a wheelchair.
While this vehicle does lean towards the more expensive side of the pricing spectrum, the lower variants of the Toyota Hiace are also just as friendly to the mobility challenged. Space is still plentiful inside and a wheelchair will still definitely fit at the back of the van in any of its variants without sacrificing room for the passengers. Alternatively, there is the Toyota Alphard for those who want a more luxurious vehicle.
Kia Grand Carnival
Another minivan that is also a good choice for those with a mobility-challenged family member is the Kia Grand Carnival. While the vehicle is a veteran of its segment it still offers a lot in the way of comfort and features that everyone will enjoy. For those with limited mobility, they will be happy to know that the vehicle does come with power sliding doors on either side, making it easier for them to enter and exit the vehicle. Space is plentiful inside the vehicle allowing for ample legroom for passengers at the back with enough luggage space for a wheelchair at the back along with other cargo. The Grand Carnival is an ideal choice for those who want a tried and tested model that also comes with a touch of convenience and luxury.
The Hyundai Starex is another great option for families that have a PWD member. Similar to the other minivans and vans on this list, the sliding doors open wide to create more space for a person to easily enter and exit the vehicle. Space is also plentiful around the second row of the vehicle allowing for more room to be had to move around. Storage of a wheelchair is also easy as there is plenty of room for it at the back even with the third-row seats up.
\Where the Hyundai Starex has an edge over its competition is when it comes to its aftermarket support. If you want to have a PWD seat or even an electric wheelchair ramp installed inside your vehicle, there are many custom shops available that will happily do the task for you. Take note, however, that will add to the overall cost of the vehicle, and adding such modifications may not be honored by the dealership.