PHOENIX, Ariz. – March 12, 2012 – “How It’s Built”, a powerful new video that details the conversion process of a Honda Odyssey minivan into a highly specialized vehicle for the disabled, was released to the public on Feb. 22, 2012.  The video, which is approximately 10 minutes, provides an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look into the engineering and design process that has enabled countless wheelchair users across the country to regain their independence.

How a Wheelchair Van is Made Photo

How It’s Built Photo

“I don’t know of a more profound video about our industry than ‘How It’s Built’,” said Doug Eaton, president of Vantage Mobility International.  “It explores the spectrum of design and technology behind mobility vehicles that’s been 30 years in the making.  Most importantly, ‘How It’s Built’ is engaging, full of energy and offers exciting views of a vehicle that has, until now, been an otherwise overlooked design marvel.”

How It’s Built,” was filmed in Phoenix, at the VMI manufacturing plant.  Directed and produced by RealWorld Marketing, it features the story of a Honda Odyssey minivan that is fully disassembled then re-engineered and re-built with the VMI Northstar in-floor ramp design. Using advanced Lean-Six Sigma manufacturing processes, the Odyssey undergoes a full rotisserie, custom transformation that’s rarely seen in an automotive manufacturing setting.

Welding of Wheelchair Van


“How It’s Built” was launched in advance of National Mobility Month, which will be celebrated in May and is being championed by NMEDA, the non-profit trade association for mobility equipment dealer and manufacturers.

“As an engineer who worked on the Apache helicopter for many years, I truly enjoyed watching this video,” said Hal Wochholz, current VMI customer.   “I think ‘How It’s Built’ tells an incredible story of the high level of engineering and mechanical design that VMI puts into their wheelchair accessible vans. The fact that VMI can build a van with this much complexity, and do it consistently without compromising the original quality of the design, is simply amazing.  And, as the video points out, not only are these vans beautifully engineered to OEM specs, they also meet or exceed the safety standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. As a VMI customer, that’s very important to me.”