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Car adaptations - hand controls

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    Car adaptations - hand controls

    May I ask -

    Does anyone have any experience or knowledge of modifications to cars involving transferring pedal actions to hand controls?

    Many thanks!

    Last edited by Doug Carpenter; 25 October 2019, 13:11.
    Diagnosed April 2017

    Hi Doug

    I had a car converted to hand controls. If you have a manual transmission, Motability will not allow conversion to hand controls. It is not advisable to have any manual transmission converted due to difficulty getting used to not using an accelerator pedal. I was heartbroken at having to sell my beloved Alfa Romeo.

    There are two types of hand controls: those hidden behind the steering wheel and the ones that use a lever parallel to the steering column. It’s down to personal preference which one you choose.

    It’s also possible to have a button fitted to electronically close the boot and, of course, an electric lift to load a wheelchair.

    I used a specialist company which I found online. I can’t remember how much I paid- sorry.

    **Sorry, I didn’t make myself clear. My beloved Alfa Romeo was a manual transmission so I had to sell it and buy an automatic to be converted.

    I found it strange using the hand controls at first and had a few short sessions driving in safe places but then, in my usual manner, I just went for it and drove to Scotland!

    I don’t know how restricted your mobility is, but I ended up only being able to drive for a few weeks - mind you, I hadn’t been diagnosed when I changed my car and had the conversion done. Doubtless, it’s more sensible to think things through more than I did (do!), but that’s too boring for me.
    Last edited by Gillette; 25 October 2019, 19:20. Reason: Make post clearer to understand

    Trying to keep positive, but not always managing.


      Good evening, Barry

      My outlaws (family joke-in-laws), now unfortunately, both deceased used this company for hand controls - being controls that were fitted to a car they owned already - Pop had a beloved Alvis, which he managed to get fitted with an automatic gearbox and then these hand controls;

      Nanny and Pop used to get on with them very well, but I am not sure I would wish to see that constituted as a recommendation.

      I am part of an pre-internet chat room, which operates like a digital pub where tables are occupied for example by car nuts (ho ho), vegetarians, cat lovers, et cetera and others have private tables - I could ask for other recommendations if you wish?


      ​Diagnosed 03/2015. One sided limb onset (arm) sporadic PMA/MND - now 90% left arm and 90% right arm, plus other bits including both shoulders and also some breathing issues – Campaign contact Winchester and Southampton branch, and trustee of the Association

      "Things turn out the best for people who make the best of the way things turn out"


        Hi Doug

        Sorry I can't advise from experience but I found a couple of websites that might be useful:-

        - There is a search function for 'adaptations installers' on the Motability website:-


        - The RIDC website has information about hand controls:-


        I hope everything goes well with getting your car adapted.



          Hi Dina, Andy, Kayleigh

          Thank you ever so much for all the information and links. I will definitely follow it up.

          I'm most grateful!

          Diagnosed April 2017


            I have been driving with hand controls for about a year, using a Volvo V40 automatic. They have worked really well. I have an accelerator ring attached to the front of the steering wheel and a brake lever to the side. Also a detachable metal plate that stops my feet from touching pedals. I found the setup easy to use.

            I did visit Wessex Driveability to try out different sorts of hand controls, so as to educate myself before making decisions.

            I used Versatile Motors to do the conversion. They are a family business and did a really good job.


              Who paid for your conversion
              ALS diagnosed November 2017, limb onset. For the 4 yrs previously I was losing my balance.

              I'm staying positive and taking each day as it comes.


                Many thanks, John.

                That's really helpful information.

                Clearly I've got a lot of research to do!

                Diagnosed April 2017


                  Hi doug,

                  You can buy second hand ones that already have very advanced hand controls and ones that are also drive from wheelchair.

                  Love Terry
                  TB once said that "The forum is still the best source for friendship and information."

                  It will only remain so if new people post and keep us updated on things that work or don't work and tips.

                  Please post on old threads that are of use so that others see them and feel free to start new subjects and threads.


                    Hi Lynne,
                    I paid myself. I'm too old to be eligible for Motobility.


                      This may be too late but I have only just joined. I used and they were excellent. It took them three hours to install. All the rods are hidden and safe. Push pull accelerator/ brake. Got my first speeding ticket within 30 minutes of having them installed. Couldn’t remember if I should push or pull!

                      What impressed me was in there waiting room they had pictures of other companies conversions they had to replace. Some were very Heath Robinson.

                      Cannot recommend them highly enough. Small family run business.



                        Thanks Richard!

                        That’s very helpful information. From their website, the company looks great.

                        If my licence is renewed next month I’ll certainly visit them. They’re not too far away.

                        Sorry about the ticket! But a small price to pay, eh?

                        Diagnosed April 2017