Though electric wheelchairs offer users increased mobility, they don't tend to perform very well in off-road conditions. British engineer Sion Pierce aims to give disabled people another option in this regard with the HexHog, a six-wheeled, electric ATV (all terrain vehicle) that, like the UNiMO is designed to take on the most difficult terrain you can throw at it.
The result of five years engineering and testing in a rugged area of North Wales, UK, the HexHog is legally classed as an ATV and not a standard electric wheelchair. "You can’t take the HexHog into supermarkets, but you can cross moorland, farmland or even peat bogs," explains Pierce. With the purchase of an additional kit, it can even be driven on the road like a car, though in the UK at least, this will require a standard car license.
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The HexHog is powered by a lithium-ion battery and two sealed pancake motors, which drive the six wheels independently. It has a range of around 8 to 12 miles (13 to 19 km), depending on terrain, and a full charge should take no more than 2.5 hours. Measuring just under 4 ft (1.2 m) wide and tipping the scales at 275 kg (606 lb), it can be transported using a small trailer. Top speed is rated as 8.5 mph (13.6 km/h), and a 50 percent gradient should prove no obstacle. It also has a very tight turning circle.
The HexHog is controlled by joystick, and features a control system that moves the seat into a lower position to make transferring from a wheelchair easier. A remote control is also available for independent loading onto a trailer.
The HexHog will set you back from £18,000 to £25,000 (around US$30,200 to $42,000), depending on options. The video below shows it in action.