The Kenguru is a vehicle that is purpose built from the ground up for people in wheelchairs. Originally developed in Hungary, the Kenguru is now hand built in Texas.
Remember the Kenguru electric car, the little city EV that was designed with wheelchair users in mind? It was supposed to be available by now, since deliveries were reportedly "imminent" in the middle of 2012. Unfortunately, things haven't worked out quite as they were supposed to, which means that the cars have not started being hand-assembled by Community Cars in Pflugerville, TX.
When we first introduced you to the Kenguru wheelchair-accessible EV in 2012, Community Cars founder and CEO Stacy Zoern was still seeking funding for her Texas-based startup. The company was struggling to meet demand due to a lack of capital to purchase inventory. "It's an interesting problem to have as a startup company," explained Zoern. "We can't meet the demand there is out there because we don't have enough money to buy the inventory to build the cars."
The Kenguru electric car is unlike any other EV, if for no other reason than it doesn't have a seat. That's because the Kenguru is designed to be driven by people in wheelchairs, and they bring their seats with them. With the Kenguru, you roll up, open the one door (the back hatch), then roll on down the road.
When it comes to getting around in a wheelchair, options are limited. There are wheelchair-accessible vans, but over that past 10 years the costs to convert a vehicle to accommodate a driver and their chair has gone up to about $80,000. Wouldn't it be great if there was a less bulky, more stylish option for getting around town?
The people behind the subway-friendly, all-electric Kenguru have experienced many of the ups and downs that other start-up EV companies are all too familiar with. In fact, when you first go to the Kenguru website, it doesn't ask if you want to buy a car, it says "Investors Wanted!"
Sure, you car drive your car to the train station. If you're taking the auto train down the East Coast of the U.S. or into the Chunnel between France and the UK, you can even slip your vehicle into a specially designed train car. However, neither of those options quite matches up to being able to drive your car straight onto a subway. The Kenguru Cruiser fits that particular bill.