Spring is in the air, and if your plans include a little travel with your new scooter, why not treat yourself to a new vehicle lift to match?
That being said, figuring all that out is not as hard as it may seem if you take it one step at a time.
What kind of car you drive is all important when it comes to fitting a vehicle lift. If you drive a sporty sub-compact, carrying a mobility scooter may be out of the question. Since outside lifts hook on to a trailer hitch, your car has to be able to be fitted with a hitch that is rated for an appropriate tongue weight. Tongue weight is a measurement of the weight a trailer hitch can hold unsupported (there are no wheels underneath for support on a vehicle lift). This is usually 10% of the vehicles towing weight. So for example if your car has a towing weight of 5,000 lbs., the tongue weight would be 500 lbs, and easily accommodate a lift and scooter. On the other end of the spectrum if your car has a towing weight of 1500 lbs., the tongue weight would be only 150 lbs. and not enough for a lift and scooter at all.
Trailer hitches come in different sizes as well. Class 1 and Class 2 hitches have a 1.25 inch square receiver that extends out from the back of the vehicle. Even though they are the same size, the Class 1 hitch will not have the ability to bear as much weight as the Class 2. There is normally a sticker on the side of a hitch that says the class and how much weight it is rated for. Very few vehicle lifts can be used on a Class 1 hitch, they are just not strong enough. Class 2 hitches can sometimes carry 250 or even 300 lbs., so a lift will work on them as long as the scooter weight added to the weight of the lift itself does not meet or exceed the tongue weight. A Class 3 and above hitch will measure an inside diameter of 2 inches square. They are heavy duty, and will be rated to carry the heaviest scooters. Most trucks and SUV’s will be able to handle a class 3 hitch ( or even a Class 4 or 5), which means your vehicle will be compatible with most vehicle lifts.