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UK debut of 'next generation' intelligent personal mobility device
WHILL Model C, a new state-of-the-art personal electric vehicle, is set to disrupt the UK wheelchair market following success in Japan
The WHILL Model C boasts a sleek, sophisticated, minimal, modern design and is a far cry from the functional wheelchairs users are familiar with. The functionality and manoeuvrability are second to none with the Model C featuring patented front omni-wheels to provide a much tighter turning radius enabling users to access the tightest of spaces. Advanced driving features include a joystick for precise manoeuvrability inside and two powerful motors to ease through the busy and uneven pavements of towns and cities, as well as grassy and bumpy terrains outside. Available in six colourways including white, grey, black, navy blue, gold and red the WHILL Model C can be customised to suit user personality and style.
Effortlessly dismantled in to three lightweight parts and the battery, the WHILL Model C can easily be transported and stored in a car boot. And embracing the very latest technology, the design team has created a smartphone app which enables users to remote control the Model C, to ease parking and storage; it also allows users to select one of three driving modes – sport, slow and normal, as well as connect with on-board technology so real-time data can be viewed regarding battery level, driving range and performance. It boasts 9 miles of total range from its lithium-ion battery and has a top speed of 4mph.
WHILL Founder and CEO, Satoshi Suigie said: "At the very heart of our design is the desire to create a product which eliminates the adverse psychological impact that affects people who use mobility devices. We have drawn on our design and engineering backgrounds to create the WHILL Model C, a next generation personal electric vehicle which not only provides freedom of mobility, but freedom from the self-consciousness often associated with a wheelchair or scooter.
"We're excited to bring the product to the UK market following success in Japan. It's our intention to redefine the concept of personal mobility for people who use a wheelchair because of a disability or reduced mobility. We have created the WHILL Model C for those who are active, social and crave adventure."
WHILL founders 35-year-old Satoshi Sugie (CEO), 34-year-old Junpei Naito (CDO) and 35-year-old Muneaki Fukuoka (CTO) have drawn on their respective design and engineering backgrounds at Nissan, Sony and Olympus to create the WHILL Model C, and deliver a personal electric vehicle designed specifically to boost user confidence and empower them to explore the world in comfort and style.
As well as keeping users' personal feelings of using a mobility aid in mind when designing the WHILL Model C, freedom of movement without the assistance of another was also a key factor for the design team. The mobility infrastructure in the UK is improving, but people with disabilities or limited mobility still experience more negative or problematic experiences of travel*, a problem the WHILL team want to address with the Model C.
WHILL has been recognised for its innovation with a series of awards including the CES 2018 'Best of Innovation' Award in Accessibility Tech and was an Engadget 'Best of CES 2018' Finalist. It was also crowned winner of world-renowned design prize, "Best of the Best" Red Dot Award 2018 in the Healthcare category and 2018 iF DESIGN AWARD.
The Model C launched in Japan in April 2017. WHILL's exclusive UK distribution partner is TGA (https://www.tgamobility.co.uk/
WHILL Europe: https://eu.whill.jp/
*DfT Disabled people's travel behaviour and attitudes to travel 13 November 2017
For Media Enquiries, including images, video content (the videos are for international release but are UK compliant), demonstrations and to arrange a product trial, please contact WHILL's PR agency, Wolfstar:
Fran Wyatt / email@example.com / 0113 273 7816
Since its founding in 2012, WHILL's mission is to transform today's antiquated power wheelchair and scooter experiences into a new kind of empowering device, an intelligent personal electric vehicle (EV). WHILL is reinventing the personal mobility industry with an Intelligent Personal EV that focuses on an approachable and aesthetically pleasing powered vehicle that boasts confidence and pushes the boundaries of personal transportation. Headquartered in Yokohama Japan with offices in San Francisco US and Taiwan, WHILL is focused on enabling everyone to explore the world in comfort and style.
· *DfT Disabled people's travel behaviour and attitudes to travel 13 November 2017