Depending on the features selected, the wheelchairs weigh between 11 and 18 pounds. Compare that to standard manual wheelchairs that typically weigh 35 pounds or more. The light weight has obvious benefits for users: It’s easier to push or self-propel and to lift into a vehicle.
The wheelchair’s primary components – the seat, backrest and wheels – are constructed of CFRP. The seat’s monocoque design provides the primary strength and load support as well as natural shock absorption without the weight and bulk of traditional suspension. Wheels are available in two sizes – 26 inches and 28 inches – and the backrest comes in three sizes, all of which are much smaller than traditional wheelchairs thanks to the support of the CFRP structure. Overall, the Carbon Black wheelchair has a striking, minimalistic look befitting of the company’s motto that promises “more person and less chair.”
“When you compare other wheelchairs with a Carbon Black model, you’ll find the look and feel to be completely different,” says Komoro. He adds that the wheelchairs offer “minimal aesthetic impact, but maximum maneuverability.”
Under development for more than eight years, the first Carbon Black wheelchairs were sold in the United Kingdom less than two years ago. The company would like to market the chairs in the United States, but first needs approval from the Federal Drug Administration. Carbon Black System has displayed its wheelchair at healthcare events in the U.S. and plans to open an office here in the future.