Automotive

Toyota Welcab Concept Vehicle - groundbreaking technology for the mobility-handicapped

Toyota Welcab Concept Vehicle ...
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EASE-OF-MOBILITY VEHICLE FOR DISABLED A HIGHLIGHT AT MELBOURNE MOTOR SHOWBack To Top

A ground-breaking vehicle for disabled drivers is among the highlights on the Toyota stand at this year’s Melbourne International Motor Show.

The Toyota Welcab concept is designed to be driven by people with a range of mobility-impairment including partial quadriplegia.

Recently developed drive-by-wire technology - which permits remote control use of brake, accelerator and steering - has made the vehicle possible.

The driver steers the car with the right hand, using a unique yolk-style controller and accelerates or brakes with the left hand using a centrally mounted joy stick.

The Welcab can be boarded without outside assistance. Both driver and passenger can operate on-board hydraulic platforms to lift their custom-designed wheelchairs from the kerb and into locked seating positions within the vehicle.

Toyota Australia is giving serious consideration to introducing Mobility products in this country, according to Toyota Australia's divisional general manager marketing, Matt Callachor.

“The Mobility concept was designed to offer freedom of transport to the mobility impaired equal to that of able-bodied people,” he said.

In Japan alone more than 40,000 vehicles fitted with easy-lift passenger seats were sold last year and Toyota held more than 60 per cent of the market.

The majority of Toyota’s WelCab products are fitted on the production line as part of the normal manufacturing process.

The company now has seven full-time Heartful Plaza dealerships in Japan catering particularly to the needs of the handicapped.

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