Health & Wellbeing

Zinger is claimed to be the world's lightest electric wheelchair

The Zinger weighs 38 pounds, and folds down to go in a car
The Zinger weighs 38 pounds, and folds down to go in a car
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The Zinger weighs 38 pounds, and folds down to go in a car
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The Zinger weighs 38 pounds, and folds down to go in a car

For people who are almost entirely unable to walk, a powerful heavy-duty electric wheelchair is sometimes necessary. For folks who simply have limited mobility, however, often all that's needed is a little something to lessen the amount of walking that they have to do. A number of lightweight folding electric wheelchairs have emerged to serve that market. One of the latest, the Zinger, is also reportedly the lightest.

Created by inventor Royce Husted, the Zinger and its 36-volt lithium-ion battery tip the scales at a total of 38 pounds (17 kg). By comparison, similar chairs that show up on a Google search are more in the neighborhood of 45 to 50 lb (20 to 23 kg). Heavier-duty chairs can weigh over 200 lb (91 kg), although they're typically aimed more at full-time, do-everything use.

Husted tells us that there are several factors that contribute to the Zinger's light weight. These include an aluminum frame with nylon joints, a nylon mesh seat, and a single 36-volt, 200-watt motor with no gearing. "Conventional power chairs use two gear motors which alone weigh more than the entire Zinger," he says. Additionally, that single motor doesn't require as large of a battery.

The chair has a top speed of 6 mph (9.7 km/h), a range of 8 miles (12.9 km), and can handle inclines up to 10 degrees. Also, like many of its competitors, it can be quickly folded up and lifted into the back of an ordinary car.

Most of those other models, however, utilize an armrest-based joystick steering system, while mobility scooters use a set of handlebars. The Zinger instead features two steering levers, one on either side of the seat. The user pushes both levers down to go forward, pulls them both up to brake, and pushes one while pulling the other to turn to either side. Reversing is accomplished simply by pushing with the feet, and a finger trigger controls the speed.

While this setup means that both of the user's arms are occupied, it also lets them pull right up against tables or desks. The chair does come with a basket, plus armrests and other accessories will be available as extras.

Royce informs us that the Zinger is currently in production for the Japanese market, with the first batch of US-bound units due to arrive stateside in October. The price has yet to be determined, but interested parties can email for updates via the link below.

The chair can be seen in use in the following video.

Source: Zinger

Update (Jan 28, 2014): The Zinger is now available in the US, priced at US$2,095. The company has also confirmed that the Zinger has a reverse function.

Zinger

11 comments
Bob Flint
Well Done, simple and clever, let's hope they don't get too greedy, I would like to see this under $500
BigGoofyGuy
I think that is really nice. I agree with Bob Flint, I hope they don't get greedy and make it unaffordable.
Jay Finke
Nice But it's too heavy, 38 lbs. I think 20# should be the MAX as it is going to be used by a wide range of people that #38 at arms reach just aint in there work area. It is a great idea.. well done !
Paul Anthony
No reverse?
Gopinath Addaguduru
Great Product! Where can I Buy it? Whats the cost?
Mark Green
Zinger is now available to order in the UK & Ireland through: www.zingerchair.co.uk It's a real breakthrough in a personal powered chair that is lightweight, easy to fold & transport and is also great fun to use!
MikeSherman
Looks similar to KD Smart Chair but their chair is electric and weighs 50 pounds.
garza2587
When is this chair available here in the USA and what's the prize. I too hope it can be affordable and under 500.00 US Dollars. Hope they don't get greedy.
Lizibet
I just signed onto the North American release site, as it now appears the Zinger chair will be released in North America in November. Unfortunately, affordability does not seem to be a hallmark of enhanced simplicity. The adage "less is more" has come to be interpreted as "less COSTS more" in modern culture, and this is no exception. The price listed on the zingerchair.com site is $2095.00 -- "including the Li-Ion battery pack" (as if the chair would do much for one with it...). Since the chair does not have a medicare code yet, the cost is on the buyer. I am somewhat disappointed - okay, quite disappointed - as when this was in the development phase, the cost was anticipated to be less than $500. Medicine in the U.S. is a crazy price inflator: I should have known.
pattybell
did they really say the chair would be around 500? Hard to believe.... but would be nice! But seriously, you get what you pay for and I think their price is fair. Especially looking at other models of electric wheelchairs that you can fold and fit into a trunk of a car. I am trying to get my mom one. Has anyone tried one?