May '19

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28 • RV PRO • May 2019 rv-pro.com R V M A N U F A C T U R E R S N ewmar has developed a propriety chair lift system designed to make it easier for RVers with mobility issues to get into and out of Newmar motorhomes. The mobility lift is still in the prototype stage and doesn't even have a name yet, much less a designated maximum allowable lift weight, but the RV manu- facturer believes it will be successful in bringing the technology to the market later this year, according to Ron Stichter, Newmar's vice president of product devel- opment and engineering. Newmar showcased the lift on a 2019 Dutch Star diesel pusher at March's RVX: The RV Experience in Salt Lake City. Stichter says once the technology is finetuned it could be made available as an option on any Newmar model or floorplan. Stichter says dealers who saw the chair lift at RVX were impressed by it. The lift system includes a seat, complete with seatbelt, at the end of a mechanized arm that can lift a person from the base of the stairs on a motorhome to the top of the stairs. A wired controller that can be operated by the user controls the system. The chair lift conveniently stores out of sight near the top the stairs when not in use. "This meets a legitimate need in the market today," Stichter says, noting that a growing portion of RVers are experiencing mobility challenges. Newmar has been making hand- icapped accessible motorhomes for several years. Stichter says this chair lift system represents an interme- diate step for those who don't nec- essarily need a motorhome that's fully handicap accessible and able- bodied RVers. Work on the mobility lift system has been going on for about the past two years, with much of the progress on the project coming in the past nine months or so, according to Stichter. When the chair lift will be commercially avail- able remains difficult to say, Stichter says, as Newmar is currently putting the product through a rigorous due diligence process to make sure it works exactly as intended. Newmar Prepped to Give Mobility-Challenged RVers a Lift By Bradley Worrell Newmar Vice President Ron Stichter is pictured sitting in the company's prototype motorhome chair lift at the RVX show. This closeup photo shows the lift chair and controller in detail.

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