Published 6/04, Copyright 2004, WheelchairJunkie.com

Off-Road Powerchair Roundup
-Mark E. Smith

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday - one day only - car-crushing powerchairs take over the arena.

Alright, there aren't car-crushing powerchairs.  However, the latest breed of off-road mobility products are pushing the powerchair limits, taking consumers farther off the proverbial beaten path than ever before.


Off-Road Powerchair Models

Fox American 6-Wheeler

Published Manufacturer Specifications

Drive System:  6-wheel
Top Speed:  4MPH
Overall Width:  32"
Overall Length:  45"
Battery Range: 10-Miles
Base Weight:  Unspecified
Weight Capacity:  Unspecified
URL:  www.foxamerican.com












Permobil Trax

Published Manufacturer Specifications

Drive System:  2-wheel
Top Speed:  9MPH
Overall Width:  27"
Overall Length: 48"-56" adjustable
Battery Range:  22 Miles
Base Weight: 396lbs.
Weight Capacity:  260lbs.
URL: www.permobilusa.com
















Frontier by Magic Mobility

Published Manufacturer Specifications

Drive System:  2-wheel
Top Speed:  6.5MPH
Overall Width:  27.9"
Overall Length:  35.6"
Battery Range: 15 Miles
Base Weight: 240lbs.
Weight Capacity:  265lbs. / 400lbs. option
URL: www.magiicmobility.com.au









TracAbout


Published Manufacturer Specifications

Drive System:  Track
Top Speed:  5.5MPH
Overall Width:  27"
Overall Length:  43"
Battery Range: 12 Miles
Base Weight:  400lbs.
Weight Capacity: 350lbs.
URL: www.tracabout.com
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Navigating the Off-Road Market
When it comes to hype, off-road powerchair marketing truly goes beyond that of most other mobility products.  From touting the indoor maneuverability of such large chairs, to promoting motor torque levels that may not be greater than those found on everyday powerchairs, some marketing may mislead consumers.  It's vital that if you're interested in an off-road powerchair, pursue an extended trial within your own environments to make sure that the product meets your needs, regardless of manufacturers' claims.  

Buyers should also consider the strength of the company from which they buy off-road powerchairs.  Over the years, companies selling these types of niche mobility products have come on gone quickly, so it's important to make sure support for the product will be available over the long haul.  You don't want to spend $10,000 today, only to be left without parts and service for your chair in three years.

It's a rough-and-tumble world out there.  But, by buying the right off-road powerchair, from the right manufacturer, you can pass over the lumps and bumps with ease.

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