Comparative testing of electric drives for wheelchairs

To help people with reduced mobility choose a vehicle suitable for their day-to-day needs, the project aims to test various electric drive systems to evaluate them and to then publish the results.


  • Lead school School of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Institute Institute for Energy and Mobility Research IEM
  • Duration (planned) 01.01.2022 - 01.09.2022
  • Project management Prof. Sebastian Tobler
  • Head of project Vincent Morier-Genoud
  • Keywords Wheelchair, scooter, electric assist, consumer testing, disability


The lack of information and studies on vehicles for people with reduced mobility makes choosing a product suitable for their day-to-day needs extremely complex. Some solutions are unable to assist the user without becoming unstable and potentially dangerous. In addition, there is a lack of clarity in the legislation which means there is sometimes incompatibility between wheelchairs and drive systems or between the law on road traffic and equipment imported into Switzerland. There is urgent need for the provision of comprehensive comparative testing of the various products available on the market so that users can be provided with guidance on purchasing the solution that best meets their needs.


This project aims to put various electric drive systems through a series of tests to evaluate them and to then publish the results. The technical data on the vehicles obtained by researchers will be combined with the information collected by users about their disability situation. A periodic comparative review of the various products can then be produced to highlight their performance, qualities and deficiencies. As this kind of equipment is often expensive, making this documentation available to future purchasers to guide them in making the best choice is important.