Mobility Scooter Types and Descriptions

By: Ralph Nindly

Following the release of the first electric wheelchair, the first mobility scooter was released to the public during the nineteen-sixties. This initial mobility scooter did not have that great of a range, but it helped those who had difficulty walking immensely. Today, these electrically powered devices are used all over the world by people who are not able to easily walk.
A mobility scooter, like wheelchair, falls into the personal mobility vehicle category. While these devices are in many regards similar to a wheelchair, they are also quite different. They are designed to move a person between areas, but generally the individual will have the ability to stand up if needed. Due to their usage, they are laid out with a set of handlebars in front and a chair in back.
The handlebars control the direction of the device and also the acceleration, as well as sometimes containing other features, such as the control mechanism for the lights, horn, or an instrument panel. The chair, located towards the rear of the device, is intended to pivot to facilitate an easier transfer into and out for the device. Some even incorporate an electrical lifting system into the seat, which causes it to raise or lower. As a result of the handlebar placement, a mobility scooter can not be easily driven up to a table or desk.
There are a few different types of mobility scooter available. For regular outdoor use, a heavy duty scooter is often the best choice. These have larger tires, a higher top speed, better suspension, larger weight capacities, and many other features geared at allowing it to be driven virtually anywhere. Often these types of scooters have ranges that are over 30 miles per charge. They are larger than other scooter types though, so they might not be the best if you intend to use in inside your home.
Travel scooters are the opposite of a heavy duty scooter. These offer limited features and weight support. They are also not as stable or as well suited to outdoor use, although they can typically be driven over tightly packed ground. The advantage, however, is the ease at which a travel scooter can be transported. These devices can quickly be disassembled to allow it to be moved with ease. They break down into several piece that will fit nicely into most trunks and are lightweight enough that most are able to move them.
While the travel scooter is very easy to transport, they are often lacking on features. There are many scooters available that are not quite as tough and rugged as a heavy duty scooter, but still offer many increased features. These types of scooters, like heavy duty scooters, can usually be disassembled if needed, but often the individual pieces will be much larger and bulkier.

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