Best Electric Wheelchairs to Improve Your Mobility in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update March 7, 2019
Consider our selection of 5 most powerful and reliable electric wheelchairs and get one to start living an active life again. Mobility electric wheelchairs can offer a great number of useful features to provide you not only with assistance but full independence. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2019
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Seat Size
Weight Capacity
Max speed
Power driving range
Weight
Comfort
Warranty
 
PROS

It's a fast folding power chair that can be collapsed and opened in just a few seconds. The package includes an original tough & thick travel bag.

CONS

The travel bag doesn't cover the wheels. 

OUR VERDICT

The Foldawheel PW-1000XL is one of the most lightweight electric wheelchairs in "Heavy duty portable power chair category". It's very manoeuvrable, responsive, comfortable, and well-made. Available with right- or left-hand controller.

detailed parameters
Seat Size

47 x 48.25 x 45.5 cm

Weight Capacity

150 kg

Max speed

8 km/h

Power driving range

~15 km with 1 original battery
~30 km with the optional 2nd battery
~45 km with the optional 3rd battery

Weight

26 kg (with 1 battery pack)

Comfort

Raisable armrest and foldable footrest, Detachable seat cushion and backrest, Detachable anti-tilt support, Travel bag

Warranty

1-year global warranty

PROS

Adjustable headrest along with reclinable backrest provides extra comfort. The latest Air-Breeze seat/backrest cover is super comfy, detachable, and machine washable.

CONS

It's pretty bulky when unfolded.

OUR VERDICT

It's a durable travel chair that performs pretty well and won't shake your bones to powder. The chair is fully adjustable for superior comfort. It's good both for indoor and for outdoor use. Available with right- or left-hand controller.

detailed parameters
Seat Size

46 x 43 cm

Weight Capacity

125 kg

Max speed

8 km/h

Power driving range

16 km

Weight

39 kg with 2 battery packs

Comfort

Reclinable backrest (4 positions) and adjustable headrest, Adjustable seat depth, Raisable and detachable armrests, Detachable and length adjustable footrests, Air-Breeze seat & backrest

Warranty

1-year global warranty

PROS

This motorised wheelchair folds down in just 5 steps. And when folded, it can stand up upright or move around like a trolley.

CONS

It performs not so well on bumpy roads. 

OUR VERDICT

This is one of the most transportable electric wheelchairs on the market, which makes it great for short trips and air flights. Also, it’s small enough to be used in a normal unadapted home. But it’s definitely not the best option for overweight people and off-road use.

detailed parameters
Seat Size

40 x 41 cm

Weight Capacity

120 kg

Max speed

5.95 km/h

Power driving range

10 km

Weight

19.8 kg 

Comfort

Large secure storage compartment, Saddleback seat, Hi-torque front suspension, Micon control system, Advanced folding technology

Warranty

2-year limited warranty on frame;
1-year limited warranty on the controller;
1-year limited warranty on electronic components and battery charger;
1-year warranty on batteries

PROS

The Cirus chair can travel as fast as 8 km/h and has a high clearance, which makes it perfect for use on almost any surface.

CONS

Its turning radius is rather limited. 

OUR VERDICT

The Drive Medical Cirrus motorised wheelchair has many standout features to offer along with basic conveniences. Fast speed and high ground clearance make it a perfect model for those who plan to use it on rough terrain and even off-road.

detailed parameters
Seat Size

45 x 40 cm

Weight Capacity

136 kg

Max speed

6.4 km/h

Power driving range

24 km

Weight

65 kg

Comfort

Foldable, Programmable PG controller, Padded back upholstery and cushioned seat, Wheel locks, Adjustable height flip back and detachable arms, Adjustable length joystick mount, Adjustable tension back upholstery, Anti tippers, Comes with a seat belt, Seat cushion with pouch, Swing-away footrest with calf straps and heel loops

Warranty

Lifetime warranty on frame;
2-year warranty on the electronic controller; 
2-year warranty on drive train components;
1-year warranty on batteries

PROS

This electric wheelchair is fitted with a large storage basket underneath the seat. It's good for travel essentials and shopping bags.

CONS

No owner manual supplied in the package. 

OUR VERDICT

The Roma Reno II Captain Powerchair is designed for active indoor and outdoor use. It’s perfect for going on picnics, walking your dog, or visiting outdoor events. The chair is so compact that it easily fits into narrow doorways, small bathrooms, and other tight places.

detailed parameters
Seat Size

46 x 38 cm

Weight Capacity

136 kg

Max speed

6.4 km/h

Power driving range

20 km

Weight

59.5 kg

Comfort

Patented locking system, Flip-up adjustable armrests,  Flip-up adjustable footplate, Large storage basket, Comfortable padded seat, PG drive controller, Easy disassembly without tools

Warranty

1-year warranty

Wheelchair88 PW-1000XL

The Best Electric Wheelchair Ever

If you don't want a bulky and heavy power chair, the Foldawheel PW-1000XL model is your choice. It's one of the lightest and most compact wheelchairs on the market. Unbelievable, but this fast-folding chair can be collapsed and opened in just 2 seconds! The chair easily fits a small car trunk and even the backseat of a car. And since this electric wheelchair weighs 25 kg only, taking it in and out of a car won't be a back-breaking process.

This folding electric wheelchair is extremely portable, easily transportable, and convenient to use. It drives very smoothly and fits in small shops and narrow corridors without bumping into anything. It copes well with pavement undulations, low kerbs, grass and even gravel. You'll be definitely amazed at how agile and manoeuvrable this chair is. The wheelchair boasts the anti-tilt support reducing the chances to fall backwards and wide front casters preventing users from getting stuck in narrow gaps. It's the perfect solution to your mobility problems that can really make your life easier!

Review of Wheelchair88 PW-1000XL Folding Electric Wheelchair

Approved for Airline Travel

Basically, airlines don't accept Lithium-Ion or wet-cell batteries as carry-on luggage. Therefore, users should remove batteries to take a chair into the cabin as hold luggage. But that doesn't go for the Foldawheel PW-1000XL model. The thing is that it uses the new technology Polymer-Lithium dry cell batteries that are completely safe and approved for airline travel. The Foldawheel PW-1000XL can operate up to 15 kilometres with a full charge, plus the chair can hold up to 3 batteries to triple this distance. To make travelling by air even easier and safer, the manufacturer has equipped the wheelchair with an easy-to-detach connector on joystick controller. Thus, you won't need to take off the whole cable in order to detach it. This power chair comes with an original thick travel bag for convenient transportation and a high-quality worldwide charger. We would like to point out that the manufacturer provides a global warranty for users no matter where they go. So if you're a frequent traveller, you can hardly find a better option than this power motorized wheelchair.

Wheelchair88 PW-1000XL Folding Electric Wheelchair in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Wheelchair88 PW-777PL

Comfort Above All

The Wheelchair88 PW-777PL is a super comfortable electric chair for short travels. Its seat is manufactured from a fabric-covered foam material that offers a gentle support for those with muscular dystrophy or curvature of the spine. The backrest and headrest are height-adjustable, while aluminium armrests feature a soft plastic upper surface for ultimate comfort. Of course, it doesn't offer the adjustability of high-end rehab wheelchairs but it's still a good option for those who can't live a day without visiting parks, shops, and various outdoor events. This travel chair performs pretty well and is an excellent option for short trips. It uses a durable Polymer Li-ion battery packs that operate about 16 km with a full charge. The battery packs are fixed on both sides of armrests and can be charged separately from the wheelchair.

With four speed settings, the chair can ride pretty fast. The first and the second settings are good for manoeuvring around the house. The third one is great for keeping pace with your family and friends during a walk outdoors. And at the max speed, this electric-powered wheelchair is very brisk and easy to drive. The joystick is extremely accurate and allows users to make speed corrections smoothly.

Review of Wheelchair88 PW-777PL Electric Power Wheelchair

Smooth Operation

This wheelchair folds and unfolds just like a baby stroller. Once collapsed, a durable plastic clip at the back of the seat can lock everything into place. The detachable footrest easily folds down, and the joystick can be locked as well. The whole process is extremely simple. However, the wheelchair feels like it's made from one piece during operation. No rattling! No clanking! It's very solid and stable, and everything works with a great mechanical precision.

At 39 kilos (total net weight with armrest, headrest, footrest, and battery), it can support users weighing up to 125 kilos. Being more durable and stable than 3-wheel mobile scooters, the chair is still compact enough to fit virtually anywhere. It performs well, handling cambers, bumps, soft ground, and mushy parts. Plus, the Foldawheel PW-777PL lightweight electric wheelchair claims to handle 13° inclines with ease.

Wheelchair88 PW-777PL Electric Power Wheelchair in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Pride Mobility i-Go Folding

Super Compact

Pride Mobility is the world’s leading manufacturer of mobility products, which produces incredibly durable and comfortable wheelchairs. Their latest release, the Pride I-Go power wheelchair, is claimed to be “one of the lightest and most transportable electric wheelchairs on the market” and we’d definitely agree with this. While most powerchairs weigh somewhere from 45 kg to 105 kg, the I-Go is half the weight with its 19.8 kg (without batteries). Plus, it can be folded down in completely other fashion. No complicated wiring or dismantling is required. Just remove the joystick, lift the cushion off, and then fold it up. That’s all. It’ll fold down to the size of an airline suitcase, which makes it especially great on air flights. When folded, it can stand up upright or move around like a trolley.

Once you unfold it, you can attach the joystick to the armrest on any side you wish, this could be a big advantage for people with variable disabilities that affect their hands and arms. Also, the chair has a footrest but, take note that it's non-customisable, just like the armrests. The seat of the chair itself is about 50 cm wide, so big-boned people might feel a bit tight. But agree, it’s not a big price to pay for extra portability and lightness.

Review of Pride Mobility i-Go Folding Portable Powerchair

Good Performer

Trying a new mobility chair is often tricky, but we have to admit that you’ll be really impressed with the Pride I-Go the moment you take it out. The chair boasts the responsive Micon control system with a user-friendly LED panel and a horn.

The top speed of the chair is 4.8 km/h which we consider to be a good speed for use around the town. But the thing you should be aware of is that if you reach the max speed, you won’t be able to do an immediate stop. The I-Go might glide to a halt, and to stop the wheelchair instantly, you'll need to flick the joystick back. However, we don’t recommend you to do that often, since it’s not good for a motor. Use this tip only in emergency situations.

The i-Go chair features solid tires and HI-Torque front suspension to cushion your ride, though we consider it fairly basic. The chair goes well over flat, smooth pavements but pebbly roads might be a challenge for it - the ride will be rather bumpy and uncomfortable.

As for the operating range, this power wheelchair comes with two batteries. The spare one is conveniently hidden in the chair and is always ready to be switched over when the first battery runs out of power. The Pride I-Go has a range of up to 15 km per one battery.

To wrap things up, this is a good, highly-portable foldaway chair for short trips and air flights. It’s extremely lightweight and small enough to be used in a normal unadapted home. But it’s definitely not for off-road use.

Pride Mobility i-Go Folding Portable Powerchair in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Drive Medical Cirrus

Feels Like a Manual Wheelchair, Performs Better

The Cirrus folding powerchair is extremely popular and has a high user satisfaction rate for a good reason. It’s not as bulky and large as most power-operated wheelchairs. Instead, it looks more like a basic manual wheelchair but actually, it has much more to offer. The major strength of the chair is its excellent weight/max load ratio. The thing is that the frame is produced from the special type of steel that is light yet extremely strong. At 65 kg, the chair can withstand up to 136 kg of weight, which makes it suitable for almost any user.

As we have already mentioned, the Cirrus chair resembles manual chairs visually and has many basic design features inherent in them including a seat belt, seat cushion, pouch, and adjustable armrests to meet specific height requirements. What really differs this model from most other battery-powered wheelchairs is its swinging footrests. Instead of a solid, non-adjustable footrest, this one offers you separate parts that can be adjusted for your preference. Yet, this chair has some more features that are not available on other models. So, let’s see all of them.

Review of Drive Medical Cirrus Folding powerchair electric wheelchair

Heavy-Duty Chair

Another thing you’ll definitely like is the ability of the Cirus chair to travel as fast as 8 km/h, making it one of the speediest powerchairs in our review. The maximum travel range makes 24 km on a full battery charge. However, the speed, as well as the distance, might be dependent on the type of terrain. For example, going up a hill takes more battery power than riding on a laminate floor. By the way, the chair can climb slopes at an incline of 6 degrees.

One more thing that sold us is the ground clearance that makes a bit more than 10 cm. This is a superb number compared to the average of 5 cm, which means that the seat is high enough to easily avoid obstacles. However, the trade-off for that amazing clearance is a relatively narrow turning radius of 85 cm.

We can conclude that this chair has many standout features to offer along with basic conveniences. Fast speed and high ground clearance make it a perfect choice for those who plan to use the chair on rough terrain and even off-road.

Drive Medical Cirrus Folding powerchair electric wheelchair in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Roma Medical Reno II Indoor

For Frequent Travelers

The Roma Reno II Captain Powerchair is a compact and extremely portable model that can be easily dismantled in mere seconds with no additional tools required. Everything you need to do is lift the seat from the base (with a battery pack). It’s worth emphasizing that you won't need to detach the batteries and other parts of the chair. Once disassembled, this electric chair takes up less room than manual models and is as easy to lift in/out of your vehicle (using the handle on the footplate).

The chair is designed for active indoor and outdoor use. With the max speed of 6.4 km and travel distance of almost 20 km, it’s perfect for going on picnics, walking your dog, or visiting outdoor events. The chair is so compact that it easily fits into narrow doorways, small bathrooms, and other tight places.

The wheelchair has a well-balanced seat with thick padding for a nice firm back support. It's neither too hard nor too plush. Also, the wheelchair has width-adjustable armrests and a flip-up footplate. Owing to the swivel action, it can be adjusted to the left or right at full 90º, allowing you to look in every direction.

Review of Roma Medical Reno II Indoor Powerchair Electric Travel Chair

Superb Quality

Although this wheelchair takes up less room than a person with a trolley, it’s a very mighty one. It's designed with a new frame locking mechanism and a PG drives controller, which makes it extremely reliable and easy to operate. The wheelchair is powered by two detachable 22 Ah battery packs and can travel distances up to 20 km on a full charge.

It features solid tyres that are highly resistant to punctures, so it easily manages grass, gravel, and small bumps on pavements. The wheelchair is very manoeuvrable and quiet. And you can rest assured knowing that the wheelchair stops instantly with a push of the joystick, since it’s fitted with incredibly intelligent electromagnetic brakes.

All things taken into account, we certainly recommend this reliable chair for people who lead an active lifestyle and need a highly-portable chair for visiting their friends, walking pups, or just going shopping. Bonus: the chair is stuffed with a large storage basket underneath the seat for your travel essentials and shopping bags.

Roma Medical Reno II Indoor Powerchair Electric Travel Chair in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

What Is an Electric Wheelchair?

One of the essential things for disabled people is, for sure, a wheelchair. It's not a luxury but a necessity as it gives more mobility and independence. Wheelchairs are divided into two types, mechanic and electric. Electric wheelchairs are considered more manoeuvrable and easy to use. Plus, if you don’t have enough strength to use a mechanic self-propelled chair and don't want to rely on being pushed by a caregiver, an electric wheelchair is exactly what you need. We have reviewed 5 top battery-powered wheelchairs to make your choice easier. Get the one to get around!

If you want to ease a pain a bit during long sitting hours, we'd recommend you to take a look at our selection of these effective pain relief devices.

What Features to Compare

Tech Characteristics

Choosing a wheelchair, the first thing you must consider is its weight capacity as the chair should not deform or break under the specific weight. Also, note that if a user's weight exceeds 100 kg, it is necessary to purchase the wheelchair with a reinforced frame. However, the stronger the frame, the heavier the wheelchair. As for the seat size, it determines how comfortable it will be to sit in the chair. For example, if a bariatric user sits in a narrow chair, it will lead to poor blood circulation. And vice versa, if a slim person chooses a too wide chair, it will result in poor fixation leading to spine problems.

Key Features

A price depends on the types of electric wheelchairs, and to understand what you are paying for, consider several main features. The key features of any wheelchair are its design, battery capacity, and, of course, the power that directly affects the maximum speed and driving range. Those who want to be independent and be able to go for long rides should consider the models with a high power reverse. Importantly, some wheelchairs can be used in a manual mode after the batteries get low. So, consider whether you need to pay extra money for an assisted chair or not.

Conveniences

What else you should consider when choosing an automatic wheelchair is how comfortable it will be to sit in. Therefore, you should take a look at all tiny bits such as armrests, footrests, headrest, additional cushions, etc which all add to a user’s comfort and are capable of solving many different problems that the handicapped often deal with - swollen legs, arms, and so on. Some wheelchairs also have cup holders, baskets, saddlebags. The choice is truly vast, so you only need to decide on what’s going to work better for you (or for the one you love). We hope our electric wheelchair review will help you find the best one for your needs.

Did you know?

When was the first motorized wheelchair invented?

The first motorized wheelchair was invented by George Westinghouse in the early 1900's. It had a simple design and was rather heavy. A prototype of a modern power wheelchair was created in 1950 by Dr. George Klein, and this invention made a revolution in medicine field. Millions of people who were injured during World War II could regain their mobility. Today, electric wheelchairs boast up-to-date technologies and advanced design.

What can technology offer nowadays?

Partial loss of any limb, let alone the total loss of legs or arms, completely changes the life. However, nowadays, technology and medicine can make the life easier offering high-quality prosthetics. Artificial limbs allow people to do activities they could not do otherwise. The market offers us new bionic prosthetics that significantly differ from mechanical ones.

A bionic knee can replace true muscle activity and adapt for slow and fast walking speeds, while a bionic leg can be even adjusted for cycling, hiking or cross-country skiing. As for upper limbs, a bionic hand is the first fully articulating prosthetic that acts and looks like a real human hand. The artificial hand is controlled by a highly intuitive control system that can read muscle signals to open and close fingers. So, with bionic limbs, people can live a full life once again.

Virtual reality sets can help disabled people walk again!

Scientist say that "Virtual reality sets can help disabled people walk again"! Numerous studies and experiments show that VR sets (glasses and nano-enabled exoskeleton) may help regain partial control over limbs. It all started back in 2014, when the 156 greatest minds of the world launched the program helping handicapped people regain their footing. During this research, scientists have noticed that regular training with VR sets really gave a visible result. VR positively affects the human nervous system forcing nerves to carry messages from the brain to muscles making the body move. As a result of the experiment, many patients gradually began to restore their ability to move the limbs. It's unbelievable, but after a constant use of a virtual reality set, the young woman, who had been paralyzed for 13 years, could move again (though with the help of walkers). At the moment, scientists conduct additional research to bring their discovery into the medical treatment level. Who knows, perhaps, in the near future, VR sets will help disabled people regain their ability to move.

The success of disabled Oscar Pistorius during 2012 Summer Olympic Games.

Oscar Pistorius, also known as the "Blade Runner", is disabled since birth. He has his both legs amputated below the knee, yet he achieved outstanding results in sport. Wearing a pair of Flex-Foot Cheetahs (carbon fibre feet), he is a sprint runner who captured the gold medal at the 2004 Athens Paralympics and is the first amputee athlete that achieved great success in 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London. The story of Oscar Pistorius is another evidence that impossible is nothing.

The benefits of sport for people with disabilities.

According to the World Health Organization, approximately 10% of world's population (roughly 650 million people) have a sensory, intellectual or physical disability. And the main task of specialists working with disabled people is not only to take care of them but also help them to recover. Years of studies have revealed that sport is a helping hand for successful rehabilitation. Whether the aims are competitive or recreational, people with disabilities deserve to have access to physical activity programs. So, what benefits can sport actually bring?

  • Improvements in mental state, social awareness, self-confidence, and self-esteem.
  • Good blood circulation.
  • Better balance and coordination.
  • Stronger muscles.
  • Better self-discipline, better organizational skills.
  • Promotion of valuable life skills.

FAQ:

Q: What is the difference between a mobility scooter and an electric wheelchair?
A: Scooters are designed for outdoor use and feature handlebars and a tiller for steering. Electric wheelchairs can be used both indoors and outdoors. They have a handy joystick and are steered with one hand only. Power wheelchairs are much more manoeuvrable and easy to use. They easily go through narrow doorways and are perfect for use in tight spaces.

Q: Can I lose strength due to using a power wheelchair?
A: Different studies show that people typically don't lose gross motor function because of using power wheelchairs. Moreover, after receiving independence through a mobility chair, gross motor skills will even improve as you'll be more motivated to move and to do things yourself!

Q: Is it safe for a child to drive a power wheelchair?
A: Any small child requires supervision and that also goes for driving a children's electric wheelchair. However, you shouldn't confuse supervision with the lack of independence. You should watch over your kids but allow them to do as much as possible on their own. Keep in mind that mistakes are an essential part of the learning process. So, bumping into the obstacles and walls is a natural step of becoming a proficient driver.

Q: When a power chair is not in use, do the batteries go dead?
A: Typically, no! When the wheelchair is off, the batteries do not draw.

Q: Can I do anything to prolong the battery’s useful life?
A: Yes, you should charge your power chair only when the battery is low. The life of the standard battery is 1,000 charges.

Q: Are power chairs waterproof?
A: Yes. The wheelchairs are designed in such a way that the battery is encased in metal and all cables have a rubber protective housing.

Q: Can the speed be adjusted on an electric wheelchair?
A: Yes, the majority of power chairs usually have a variable speed joystick that can be set between 0 and 8 km/h.

Q: How to care for my wheelchair?
A: The major component when caring for your chair is battery condition. If the battery isn't properly maintained, this might lead to many problems with your electric wheelchair. The battery may become over-worn in case you usually operate the chair at top speeds or leave it plugged into the charger for too long. Also, when maintaining your power chair, don't forget to check wheels from time to time. Make sure that all nuts and bolts are tight.

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Publish Date: 2017-10-25 08:48:42