Motability Plymouth – PMC is an authorised partner of the Motability Scheme. The Motability Scheme enables disabled people to lease a new car, scooter or powered wheelchair by exchanging their Government funded mobility allowance . If you receive either the Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance (HRMC DLA), the Enhanced Rate of the Mobility Component of Personal Independence Payment (ERMC PIP) , the War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement (WPMS) or the Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP) you may be eligible to join the Motability Scheme.
There is no upper age limit. As long as you receive one of the allowances, you are eligible for the Scheme. Parents or guardians can order a car on behalf of a child aged three years and above, who is receiving HMRC DLA. To lease a car through Motability, you must have at least 12 months’ award length remaining. Only the higher or enhanced rate of the mobility allowance is used.
The weekly allowance rates are as follows:
- Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance; £57.45 per week (As of 8 April 2015)
- Enhanced Rate Mobility Component of Personal Independence Payment; £57.45 per week (As of 8 April 2015)
- War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement; £64.15 per week (As of 6 April 2015)
- Armed Forces Independent Payment; £57.45 per week (As of 8 April 2015)
The Attendance Allowance cannot be used to lease a car or scooter through Motability.
Checking your eligibility
If you would like assistance checking whether you are eligible for the allowance, contact one of the following agencies:
- For enquiries about claiming Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment, please telephone 03457 123456 or visit the DWP website. If you live in Northern Ireland, please telephone: 028 9090 6182
- For enquiries about claiming War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement or Armed Forces Independence Payment, please contact Veterans UK on 0808 191 4218 or visit the Veterans UK website.
Motability does not decide who receives the allowance. The Department for Work and Pensions decides who receives the allowance. If you lose the allowance during your lease, Plymouth Mobility Centre will work with Motability to make arrangements for the return of the scooter or powered wheelchair. However, you will only pay the cost of the lease until the scooter or powered wheelchair is returned, not for the remaining length of the lease. If you paid an Advance Payment, this will be refunded to you on a pro rata basis.
Choosing a suitable product
To get the most out of your mobility scooter or powered wheelchair, you will need to choose one that matches your needs and lifestyle. With many different sizes and models to choose from, we have listed a few things to consider to help you in your choice.
Ease of getting on and off
If you have difficulty with your leg movements you will need plenty of room to get on and off the scooter or powered wheelchair in comfort. Some models will be fitted with a seat that swivels round at least 90 degrees which may help. Plymouth Mobility Centre has many products for you to try getting on and off various models to see which works best for you before you decide.
Comfort for longer trips
If you are going to use your product regularly, or for longer trips, think about how far it can travel on a fully charged battery and also how comfortable the seat is. If there are steep hills that you regularly need to travel up, you may need extra power, especially if you’re carrying shopping.
Carrying your product in your car
Many smaller scooters can be dismantled into parts or folded for easy transportation. Try this out with any scooter you are seriously considering to check that you, or someone who regularly travels with you, knows how to do this and are able to lift the parts into and out of your car. If you need a powered wheelchair, check with us as to whether it is suitable to be transported in a car as some powered wheelchairs cannot be dismantled.
Your typical journey
Consider where you will use your scooter or powered wheelchair. The turning circle and how it moves will vary from model to model, so if you’ll be using the scooter in shops or around your home, you’ll need to bear this in mind.
Enjoying a smooth ride
It is also worth thinking about the kinds of surfaces you usually travel on, as some products come with solid tyres and others are air-filled (pneumatic). Solid tyres generally last longer than air-filled tyres but offer less suspension, so if you travel more frequently on bumpy surfaces then air-filled tyres may be more suitable. Also consider whether a sturdier model would be better, or if you need something a bit lighter to get you around your local supermarket or shopping centre.
Feeling at ease and in control
However long your average trips are, you will want to be comfortable and feel totally in control of the scooter or powered wheelchair. So, check that the steering column or ‘tiller’ is in easy reach and if not, ask us if it can be adjusted. On all models, the controls themselves are usually very simple and can be operated even if you have limited strength in your hands.
Remembering to recharge
As your product is battery powered you will need to be able to plug it in to recharge it wherever you store it. When we come to your home to carry out an assessment we will advise you on a solution that might be suitable for you, particularly if you need to store it outside.
Types of Scooters
A mobility scooter, rather than a powered wheelchair, is probably the right choice if you can travel relatively independently, get on and off the scooter on your own, and are able to use a bicycle style steering column, or tiller. We’ve grouped our disability scooter range into three different categories – small, medium and large, to make sure that you choose the mobility scooter most appropriate to your needs and lifestyle.
Light and easy to transport, these scooters usually dismantle into a few parts to allow you to stow it in a car boot. You’ll need to make sure that any small scooter you lease can fit easily into your car, and that you, or your carer, are physically able to lift it into the boot easily. These scooters are often made with a lighter frame to make them easier to transport, but this means there is a limit to the amount of passenger weight they can carry and the distance they can travel before the battery needs to be recharged.
- Not suitable for use on the road
- Small compact and lightweight
- Fold or dismantle for storage and/ or transportation
- Can often be used around the home
- Generally have a lower maximum weight capacity, usually up to 135kg or 21 stone
- Have a smaller average range that can be travelled without requiring the battery to be recharged, usually up to a maximum of around 10 miles.
To see our transportable scooters Scooter range – Click here.
To see our 4mph small scooters – Click here.
Medium Scooters (Class 2 and Class 3)
Generally sturdier and able to transport more weight than small scooters, medium scooters can travel at speeds of up to 6mph. They cannot usually fold or dismantle so may be more difficult to transport in a car. A Class 3 medium scooter can be used on the road and would be registered with the DVLA
- Most models will have a greater travel range than small scooters, generally a maximum of around 20 miles.
- Some have a greater weight capacity, ranging from around 135kg to 150kg (21 to 25 stone), depending on the model
- Many have a wider turning circle than smaller models
To see our Medium sized 4mph scooters – Click here
To see our Medium Sized 6mph scooters – Click here
Large road-legal scooters (Class 3)
Suitable for longer distances and rougher surfaces, these scooters can carry between 20 to 30 stone (up to a maximum of 250kg) in passenger weight. Due to the size of these scooters, you’ll need to have space to store them in a secure, locked area such as a Garage or Shed. All Motability large scooters are classified as Class 3 products by the Department for Transport and will have road tax (provided free of charge by the DVLA) and we are able to complete all the necessary paperwork on your behalf. They can travel up to 8mph on the road (4mph limit on pavements). For more detailed information about road rules for Class 3 scooters, visit Motability’s Scooter Highway Code page.
- Can be used on roads
- Maximum speed of 8mph
- Generally have larger seats and can carry more weight
- Generally have a greater battery range, meaning they can travel further between charging, usually up to 25 or 30 miles
- Require more storage space in a secure, locked area
- Includes lights, indicators and horn
- Not easily transportable
To see our large 8mph class 3 scooters – Click here
Department for Transport classifications
- Class 2 products can only be used on the pavement and have a maximum speed of 4mph.
- Class 3 products must be registered with the DVLA and require road tax – Plymouth Mobility Centre can take care of this for you. They can travel up to 8mph, although must only be driven at 4mph on pavements.
Types of powered wheelchairs
A powered wheelchair, rather than a scooter, may be a more suitable product for you if you need to stay in your wheelchair throughout the day, have restricted mobility in one or both hands, require mobility assistance around the home or are unable to transfer on and off a seat easily.
Standard powered wheelchair
These powered wheelchairs come fitted with standard seats and controls, although they will vary between individual models. Many models will fold or dismantle to allow you to transport them in a car.
- Shops are often more accomodating to powered wheelchairs than mobility scooters
- Standard powered wheelchairs are often easier to store than Mobility Scooters
- Powered wheelchairs have a much smaller turning circle – allowing for greater indoor use
To view our standard powered wheelchairs – Click here
Configured Powered Wheelchairs
Plymouth Mobility Centre is an accredited specialist dealer for configured powered wheelchairs and we have the knowledge and experience to tailor a powered wheelchair to suit your specific needs. Custom-built powered wheelchairs are built to each individual, they have custom seat sizes, specialist cushions and often have powered options such as Tilt-In-Space, Backrest Recline and Seat Hi-Lo. Most of our manufacturers use advanced technology so even if you have very limited movement it is likely that you’ll find a suitable product. If you believe you need a custom solution please contact us on 01752 546 222
Arranging a home visit
At Plymouth Mobility Centre, we offer a no obligation assessment and demonstration at your home and will bring various products for you to try. Each scooter and powered wheelchair differs depending on the number of wheels, its maximum speed, the maximum weight it can carry, the average distance it can travel on one battery charge and the actual weight of the product itself.
Before arranging a home assessment, one of our team will talk through your needs and ask a few basic questions, such as:
- Your height and weight
- How far you travel on your scooter or powered wheelchair
- If there are hills in your local area that you regularly travel up and down
- If you will use the product around your home
- If you are likely to carry much shopping on your scooter
- If you want to transport the product in a car
- How much space you have to store the product
Each of these factors will make a difference to which product is right for you. It’s worth discussing with us first so that we can bring the most appropriate scooters or powered wheelchairs to your home for you to test out during your demonstration.
All the information you need to make your decision is available at www.motability.co.uk and there are always people on hand should you wish to discuss your options. Motability general enquiries 0300 456 4566 or Plymouth Mobility Centre 01752 546 222
Vehicle Adaptations and adjustments
Many of Motability’s customers have adaptations fitted to their cars to help make driving or travelling easier or more comfortable. Adaptations generally fall into three categories:
- Driving adaptations – To help improve your driving experience
- Stowage adaptations – To allow you to stow your scooter or wheelchair
- Access adaptations – Designed to help you get in and out of the car
Choosing your adaptation before you choose your car
It is strongly recommended that you contact Plymouth Mobility Centre on 01752 546 222, to help you work out what type of adaptation you may need before you make your final choice of car, as not all adaptations are suitable for every type of car.
Driving controls can make a huge difference to your motoring experience. They may enable a person to drive where it would otherwise not be possible. They vary from simple attachments which can be bolted onto your car or replacing all existing driving controls with a system individually designed for you.
In most cases the original car’s controls and features can still be used, so your nominated drivers can still drive. However, it’s important to bear in mind that most driving controls require an automatic gearbox.
Getting an adaptation
There are two ways in which Motability can help you adapt your car to fit your needs.
1. Adapting your car at the start of your lease
The easiest and most cost effective way of adapting your car is at the start of your Motability lease. There are over 400 different adaptations available through the Motability Managed Adaptations Programme (MMAP), where we can fit the adaptations to your vehicle before it is delivered to you. The best bit is that many of the most popular adaptations can be fitted to your car at no extra cost. Others will require payment in addition to your Advance Payment directly to your car dealer at the start of your lease.
If the adaptation you need is not available through MMAP, then you will are able to contact us to arrange the installation and payment directly with ourselves. In addition you will need to contact RSA Motability (RSAM) to make sure your insurance covers the adaptation.
2. Adapting your car during your lease
Should you choose to add any extra adaptations during your lease, you will need to inform RSAM and Motability Operations first to ensure you have adequate insurance. You can then contact us to discuss your needs. You will need to pay the cost of any such adaptations direct to ourselves.
Adaptations Available on the scheme
Plymouth Mobility Centre is an Adaptations installer on the Motability Scheme, below are some links to the adaptations we install;
For Push / Pull hand controls for use with the Brake and Accelerator – Click here
For Driving aids to allow easier everyday control of the vehicle – Click here
For Boot hoists to lift Mobility scooters, Powered wheelchairs or Manual wheelchairs into the vehicle – Click here
For Swivel Seats to allow for easy access and transfer into the vehicle – Click here
For Secondary controls to operate the lights, indicators and more – Click here