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Best Vehicle for Elderly/Limited Mobility Drivers

2

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  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,073
    The LeSabres that are left have bench seats and those are very comfortable. The Limited power seat for the driver has an exit button and the seat moves back to a preset position for entry and exit then a button moves it forward to a preset position for two different drives. The Lucerne and LaCrosse should have the same type of wider opening door, in my opinion, making them a replacement for LaSabre and ParkAvenue.
  • falcononefalconone Posts: 1,726
    Believe it or not, I think a Scion b would be good for seniors. Plenty of room to stow a wheelchair (rear seats down). They don't have to crouch too much to get into the car. There is ample head room and rear seating is nice if they have elderly guests.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    How about a Mercury Montego or Ford Five Hundred? Class leading trunk space (or so the ads say) and it seems to be easy to get in and out of.
  • The toyota Camry is a good old peoples car.
  • jefferygjefferyg Posts: 418
    I think something along the lines of a Ford Freestyle or a minivan is the best vehicle for elderly people. You don't have to climb up to get in like many SUVs and they are not so low to the ground like many sedans.

    Most minivans also offer automatic doors and rear liftgate which could prove invaluable for elderly car buyers.
    I also know several seniors who drive small pickups. Again, they like the ease of getting in and out.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Just as an FYI...

    Miata: 13" (talk about low)
    Legacy 2.5i sedan: 17.5"
    Impreza RS sedan: 20"
    Outback XT: 22"
    Tribeca: 26"

    I recommend the Outback because you don't really have to climb up, yet it's not too low either. My Forester is slightly higher, though I have not measured. Both are pretty easy to climb in and out of.

    Exception - the rear door of the Forester is too narrow, so getting in the back seat is not as easy.

    I hope someone finds this information useful.

    -juice
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    I read that about 2 weeks ago somewhere. (I think on GMtv) Well it was on Limited Mobility and GM got an award. ;)

    Rocky
  • I am 6'1", 240lbs with a spinal fusion and a few other mobiity problems. I have been driving minivans and SUVs for the last ten years but would really like a sedan. The ford 500 is perfect, but I do not want to buy a ford.
    Does anyone know of another sedan that has the high seating and headroom of the ford 500? The boomers are getting older and less mobile. The manufacturers should be planning for this market
  • mirthmirth Posts: 1,212
    ...buy the 500? If you're worried about repairs you can just add an extended warranty (although Ford recently expanded their powertrain warranty to 5yr/60K miles with free roadside assistance).

    Honestly, I can't think of another sedan that has the same seating height advantage.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Try an Avalon, maybe? Aren't those seats at least slightly higher than normal?

    -juice
  • I'm rather tall as well (6'5") with back trouble. Do you (or anyone else) have trouble loading or unloading cargo into your car trunks or minivans? I'm looking at the ford 500 just for this reason. Thanks.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    I don't have an issue with any of my cars (Infiniti I35, Honda Civic, and Honda Odyssey) but I have had issues before with a Dodge Neon (the opening is too small) and if I'm carrying something bulky an Infiniti G35 might make it hard to stick stuff into the trunk.

    Besides the Ford 500 I would also look at the Ford Freestyle and perhaps a few minivans.
  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    As a mobility limited person I have some experience with different vehicle and I would unhesitatingly recommend the Dodge Caravan or the Chrysler version of the same. Easy to enter and exit and with the sliding door plenty of room for wheechairs etc. Also plenty of room to install a lift to load wheelchairs or scooter thru the back.

    I drive a '06 Dakota but admit it is a bit high for some people. The 2nd generation Dakotas aren't quite as high so I wouldn't overlook those.
  • kronykrony Posts: 110
    Didn't see anyone mention the Chrysler 300...not sure if it has the same specs as the 500, but I would guess it's close.
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,018

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email, karen@edmunds.com, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • I'm looking for a vehicle with the seat height of a Forester to drive elderly family members (female). The minivan foot area where they can just slide their feet out is nice but it is difficult with the seat height to get them in.

    Is there any vehicle out there without the foot well and flat floor for them to slide out in addition to the seat height.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You may want to plan ahead and get a ramp van with a lift.

    I believe they have conversions for the Toyota Sienna and the Dodge Grand Caravan.

    The Dodge even has the Swivel seats that you can make face outward. That might make it easier for them to exit.

    I totally agree with the Forester's seats being at the perfect height, you don't climb up or sit down, you just slide in!
  • irismgirismg Posts: 345
    The vast majority of people who post on sites like this one seem to feel that they will never be afflicted with a physical impairment, and that the car makers should only cater to the young and healthy. I'm 46 years old and have arthritis in the knees, and it's been an education to lurk and read the comments from so many clueless people who will one day be infirm and still need transportation. They look down their noses at the people who drive Town Cars and Impalas other non-sporty vehicles, the so-called "fogey"-mobiles, and would seem to prefer older people who drive automatics just don't exist.

    What I hope they come to realize, someday soon, is that you can't stop living just because you can't work the clutch pedal anymore or sit in a low, thinly cushioned seat anymore. We have to buy what we need, not what the young males would prefer us to have, because sometimes there are just more important things in this world than having an exciting half-hour drive to work.

    Anyway, I wanted to thank Edmunds for bringing up that this is a real need for more people than a lot of "enthusiasts" would care to admit.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,837
    A reporter would like to talk drivers above the age of 50 who chose a vehicle because of a specific feature that made your driving experience more comfortable. Please respond to ctalati@edmunds.com with your daytime contact information along with the vehicle you chose and the feature that you really liked no later than Tuesday, June 3rd.

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  • At this time, my dad & I are using a 2005 Chevy Equinox LT with hatchback and automatic transmission (it has been laughingly called a "tall wagon"). His rolling walker packs away behind the back seats on the reversible picnic shelf's middle level and we slide in and out the front seats fairly well with our decrepit bodies and his dizzy self.

    If all else fails; Yahoo! or Google for "best vehicles for senior citizens" for 2008 makes and models.

    Daddysangel
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,153
    "A new in-depth report released today by the UK's IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists contradicts the common assumption that older drivers are a danger on the roads, comprehensively proving that drivers over 70 are no more likely to cause crashes than any other driver, and are indeed, considerably safer than younger drivers.

    The report shows that older drivers are safer than young drivers. Just eight per cent of drivers are currently over 70 years of age, and they are involved in around four per cent of injury crashes; fifteen per cent of drivers are in their teens and twenties but are involved in 34 per cent of injury crashes."

    Older drivers - Safe or unsafe? (Gizmag)

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  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,321
    Old Farts haven't learned how to use Cell 'phones or know how to text. So, naturally they're safer drivers. ;)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    We'd also have to look at crashes per mile, because after retirement they likely drive less distance, too.

    I'm not saying grandpa is unsafe, just that we should look at wrecks-per-mile, not per person.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,893
    That could get a bit complex. Odds of a fender bender in town are higher than in a rural setting. While high speed injury accidents are more likely in a Highway or rural setting.

    I am sure gadgets such as cell phones will be the number one cause of all accidents and all age groups in the not too distant future.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    We'd also have to look at crashes per mile, because after retirement they likely drive less distance, too.

    I'm not saying grandpa is unsafe, just that we should look at wrecks-per-mile, not per person.


    Exactly ... my folks bought a new Hyundai Sonata in the spring of 2003. Almost 7 years later, the car has less than 24K on the clock.

    My dad's '70 Chevy pickup - which he bought new - has less than 140K on the body after 40 years. The top end of the engine was rebuilt around 95K.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Check out the Auto Access Seat - great if you carry around elderly folks or people with moderate disabilities:

    http://www.autonews.com/article/20100118/VIDEO/301189875/1354

    Not for the driver, but still a very cool feature.

    They will still sell a full ramp van if the driver needs it.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,153
    Be kinda cool for pulling up next to your favorite fishing hole. I can just see my mom sitting in it. :shades:

    image (link)

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  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    OK, I caught a big one.

    Reel ME in. :D
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,328
    24K on a 2003? Hey, if they want to sell it sign me up! I'll drive it back home....
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    24K on a 2003? Hey, if they want to sell it sign me up! I'll drive it back home....

    What, and put on 13% more miles on the trip from CA to NJ? I think not. :P

    I spent most of last week driving it around as I was out visiting the folks. GLS V6 with the 4-speed auto with the manual override slot on the transmission. Burgundy with tan cloth interior, faux wood on the dash. Dad likes to call it his "Jaguar" since the front end reminds him of one. Nice car. I think they paid around $18K for it back in 2003. They were all set on getting a Camry then my dad found that the Hyundai uses a thicker gauge steel and that they could get the V6 for the same price as a 4-cyl Camry.

    What's interesting is that the OEM Michelins had to be replaced around 20K ..

    Unfortunately, nobody will inherit the car as it, along with almost all of my parents' assets, are owned by a trust that will be split up when they pass. As I understand it, everything is to be sold and converted to cash, then divided up between me, my sister and our 4 kids.
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