VMI, a leader in the manufacture and distribution of wheelchair accessible full-size and minivan conversions, announced the redesigned 2011 Honda Odyssey with the innovative VMI Northstar and Summit conversions are now available for sale through authorized mobility equipment dealers.
“We’re honored to be a part of the Honda family,” saidDoug Eaton, president of VMI. “Over the past five years, we’ve invested a great deal of time and engineering expertise to ensure our Northstar in-floor ramp and Summit fold-out ramp conversions are true to Honda’s quality, reliability and safety standards. This demonstrates our ability to deliver a conversion van that meets the expectations of Honda customers worldwide.”
The 2011 Odyssey is available in four trim levels including EX, EX-L, Touring and Touring Elite, all powered by an efficient 248 horsepower I-VTEC V6 engine. The Odyssey offers best-in-class fuel economy of 19 miles per gallon in the city and 28 miles per gallon on the highway using advanced technologies like the six-speed automatic transmission and Variable Cylinder Management. Honda offers an array of entertainment options on the new minivan, including a 650 Watt stereo system with USB audio interface and 16.2” dual DVD screen.
“We designed our wheelchair conversion of the 2011 Honda Odyssey minivan based on tools and systems acquired from our Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma initiatives,” added Ted A. Larson, VMI’s vice president of engineering. “Through these advanced manufacturing processes, our engineering team was able to pinpoint potential issues during development and correct them before production began. It’s our way of staying true to the same core values that has made Honda one of the leading automotive manufacturers around the world.”
The Honda includes an improved FLEX floor that provides an unprecedented 12 ¾” drop from the original floor, affording the conversion two unique distinctions; the most wheelchair maneuvering room and the lowest ramp angle of any VMI conversion. E-coated for corrosion resistance and assembled with lightweight stamped metal components, the FLEX floor is VMI’s foremost statement on innovation.
Both the Honda Northstar and Summitconversions feature an improved PowerKneelTM system to reduce noise and increase dependability. The PowerKneelTM lowers the vehicle to provide the wheelchair user with a lower ramp angle when traveling into and out of the vehicle. The system has an electro-hydraulic actuator that uses less energy and a built-in manual release for safety.
The Northstar conversion includes:
- 55” Door opening height
- 30” Usable ramp width
- 750 lb. Load rating
- SURE DEPLOYTM Emergency Backup System
- Successfully completed two 10,000 mile validation cycles
The Summit conversion includes:
- 55” Door opening height
- 28 7/8” Usable ramp width
- 600 Ib. Load rating
VMI has already passed all required Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS), including the rigorous 50 mph rear impact collision, which tests floor structure and fuel system integrity. VMI spared no cost to make the 2011 Honda Odyssey conversion the safest and most reliable vehicle in the mobility market.
“We put every vehicle through meticulous testing to make sure it exceeds FMVSS regulations,” noted Eaton. “We believe that merely meeting minimum safety requirements is not good enough. We’re committed to ensuring that our dealers and consumers have a product they can trust the minute they turn the ignition switch. This level of commitment keeps VMI in sync with the core values espoused by the Honda brand.”
The 2011 Honda Odyssey with the VMI wheelchair conversion is currently available to the public. For more information, visit VantageMobility.com.