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Preparing for a WAV demo

A Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle (WAV) demonstration will include a test drive and being shown how all the features of the WAV work, such as ramps, lifts and wheelchair tie downs.

Customer experience tells us that there's nothing like having a demonstration to see how one WAV compares to another. WAV suppliers will bring a demonstration vehicle to your home for you to try, with no obligation to lease that vehicle, so don't feel under any pressure.

Getting the most from your demonstration

You need to make sure you find the WAV that is right for you and your needs, and that you and anyone you regularly travel with feel comfortable in it. If the WAV you are testing does not feel right, trust your instincts and say so. Take your time during your demonstration so that you're able to get to grips with everything that you're going to need to know about a vehicle.

If you're thinking about a Nearly New WAV, it's unlikely that your WAV supplier will be able to bring the exact model for you to test, but it's still important that you test one as similar as possible to check how suitable it is.

Things to consider

Who should be at the WAV demonstration?

  • Make sure the driver and anyone you regularly travel with is with you when the WAV is demonstrated and you go on the test drive
  • You carer must be happy helping you into the vehicle, securing your wheelchair and driving
  • Practise operating the tie-down restraints to secure the wheelchair in place as some people can find this tricky.

Try the WAV where you will use it

  • During your demonstration you should visit places you regularly go and drive on roads that you would usually drive. You will want to see if the WAV will fit in with your daily life
  • Get your driver to practise parking and make sure they have clear visibility when you're secured in your wheelchair
  • Try using any car parks you regularly visit, for example supermarkets or doctor surgeries. Not only must you be able to access the car park, but you must check there is space to park the WAV and allow access for the ramp and the wheelchair user.

Take your equipment

  • If you normally travel with luggage or equipment then take it to your demonstration so you can check you have enough space.

Practise using the features

  • Your WAV supplier will demonstrate how all the features of a WAV work
  • Practise with these features yourself to check that you're comfortable and confident in using them.

Think of the future

  • Consider whether your needs might change during your lease – could you need a bigger wheelchair that will impact on the size of WAV you need?
  • Think about whether you might need additional seating in the future for extra passengers.

Once you've found the WAV that's right for you, your WAV supplier will go through a Statement of responsibilities form Will download a resource(PDF 55KB)  with you. This questionaire will check the WAV that you're considering, and the Motability Scheme, meets your needs now and for the duration of your lease. Your new WAV will be an important part of your life for years to come.

Demonstration checklist

To give you an idea of what to expect during a demonstration we have put together a checklist of the things the WAV supplier will go through with you. You may also find it useful to consider the following to help you prepare for a demonstration.

Download the WAV demonstration checklist Will download a resource(PDF 102KB)