Shopping for wheelchair-access van conversions can be overwhelming, especially for first time buyers. Some conversions are colorful and attractive. Others offerings catch the eye with their special features. And a few have a price point that demands a second look.

Savvy customers, however, always move past a product’s pretty face, and hunt for serious information about design efficiency, the quality of the materials used in its construction, and the workmanship that separates the best from the rest.

Product photos and color brochures seldom talk about practical issues like ease of installation, failure frequency, or cost of repairs, do they?

To find answers, maybe we should be asking the repair techs who install conversions, and then service them when they break or need maintenance. Yeah. That’s the ticket. After all, who knows better than techs about design, durability, and difficulty of repair?

That’s why Martec Group, an independent market researcher-- with no ties to conversion makers—saw the value of such a survey. They asked 100 randomly selected mobility technicians to rate several companies in key areas:

  • initial build quality
  • durability and failure rates
  • service after the sale
  • engineering expertise and execution
  • ease of installation & integration with various OEM vehicles

Bakers Dozen

During the survey 13 brands were mentioned. When the votes were tallied, there was one clear winner: BraunAbility, which won all major ratings categories by a landslide.

  • Best product/overall quality: 83%
  • Most reliable: 79%
  • Highest quality safety equipment: 79%
  • Best integration with OEM chassis; 78%
  • Engineered with the greatest attention to detail: 78%
  • Brand that holds its value the longest; 78%
  • Best customer Service: 73%
  • Strongest structural design: 67%
  • Fewest customer complaints about noise: 67%

In fact, techs seemed so impressed with BraunAbility, that 79% of them named it as the brand they would choose for a family member.

Based on the opinions of service technicians who install, maintain, and repair conversion products, BraunAbility emerges as the clear favorite with the folks who work on them.

Check out the video here and wheelchairs currently available across the country here.