Hyundai Motor Co. and its affiliate Kia Corp. have launched a new mobility service called EnableLA in the United States for disabled and older people. EnableLA is a wheelchair-accessible vehicle (WAV) ride-hailing service that intends to enhance mobility for users with disabilities across Los Angeles.
Under this services, people with disabilities can book rides over the phone or through a mobile app. As soon as the request is received, professional drivers trained to support people with disabilities will drive to the specified pickup location. After this, drivers will make sure that passengers are reached safely to their destinations.
Towards this goal, the two automakers teamed up with ButterFLi, a Los Angeles-based platform for people with disabilities, and SMS, a company specializing in hiring professional drivers.
Additionally, Hyundai's Palisade SUV and Kia's Telluride SUV have provided wheelchair access for this experimental program.
The modified vehicles include additional safety measures, and the height of its inside cabin has been raised to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The vehicles also have rear-mounted floor and wheelchair ramps to ensure safe boarding for wheelchair users.
In a press release, Hyundai Motor's Chief Innovation Officer, Chi-Young-Cho said that they expect mobility situations for those with vulnerabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. EnableLA would lay a solid foundation for Hyundai Motor Group to provide human-centered mobility services that give everyone access to transportation.
Apart from this, Kia Motors Corporation has also announced plans to develop its collaborations with global mobility firms to address the needs of a broad spectrum of customers throughout the world. During a visit to Kia's Sohari plant in Korea to evaluate preparations for launching new fourth-generation Kia Carnival, President and CEO Ho Sung Song highlighted the company's global mobility strategy.