The Quickie Xenon2 is a refreshed version of the very successful Xenon, an ultralight folding wheelchair which has been transforming opinions of folding wheelchairs. Key to the success is the wide variance in its configuration. We took a look at the Xenon2 to see how it benefits both new and longer-term wheelchair users alike.
Quickie Xenon2 specifications
Available in three frame variants – fixed frame, swing away leg rests and a hybrid of the two, the Quickie Xenon2 is a very versatile folding ultra-light wheelchair.
The frame weights vary from 8.8KG (fixed frame) to 10.3KG (Swing Away), with a max user weight of 110KG. This means that in a weight bracket, the Xenon2 already comes close to weight ranges that rigid frame wheelchairs should be achieving.
Seat widths vary from 320mm to 460mm and depths of 340mm to 500mm, with incremental changes of 20mm. This gives a wide range of seating options for users. The backrest heights range from 250 to 475mm and have a degree of back angles of 75 to 103 degrees, with 4 degree increments. Because the angles are not welded, it means that they can be adjusted over time, a key benefit to a user who might have an evolving need.
The Xenon FF comes in two frame styles of 80 and 88 knee bend options too – enabling that more active seating position for the who prefer their feet more in line with their knees.
With three frame styles, there are a range of backrest, footrest and brakes available and, although it’ll be covered under the ride itself, wheel camber availability is 0, 2 and 4 degrees. Lastly, there are 32 colours with caster frame, hub and pushrim accent colours available.
Ride and Drive
The Quickie Xenon2 FF (Fixed Frame) is the most popular wheelchair and it’s easy to understand why. With the lifting bar footrest or the autofold footrest, the FF model gives great stability, especially when moving at walking pace or faster around corners. The Hybrid and Swing Away versions obtain more stability with the additional frame piece.
Coupled with 4 degree camber, the stability of the Xenon means that you don’t have to slow down as much and essentially waste the energy you put in to achieving the pace. This is a huge benefit, especially for those with a muscular or neurological condition.
The seating just further benefits – the Exo Pro seating fabric means that in warm weather your back isn’t feeling abrasive against your clothing and seat. It means a more comfortable ride and gives you confidence to move around at your own exertion.
When driving, your own method and style of pushing will dictate your pushrim of choice. Fortunately, the Xenon2 doesn’t let you down here either – Surge push rims are popular and others can be opted for. It means that you don’t need the most grip to get the most amount of propulsion from your push.
Folding and transport
Where the Quickie Xenon2 comes into its own is when you need to move about. If you rely on a range of vehicles with small boots or need to fit the wheelchair in the rear of a car, the Xenon can be folded to a small size. We’ve demonstrated this quite easily with the demonstration Xenon2 in the boot of a Seat Alhambra with the 7 seats in use – you can see that the boot is a lot smaller, whilst the Xenon sits neatly within.
It’s not just the size either – without the wheels, the weight is manageable for many at under 9kg. This is also benefited further with the locking mechanism under the seat.
So what’s the biggest challenge? You should always be aware when lifting the wheelchair over yourself of the rear axle stems, which can be a reasonable length depending on the height of your seat.
Most popular options
Common options include the Spinergy 12 spoke rear wheels, surge hand rims and carbon side guards. Marathon Plus tyres are also a popular choice, which is not surprising given the puncture resistance and high pressures they cope with.
Another option well worth considering are Frog Legs (personal note: I have some on my own Xenon), Soft Roll casters, fold down handles and Exo Pro backrest fabric are also worth the investment.
Quickie Xenon2 Conclusion
The Xenon is an ultralight wheelchair that copes easily with very active lifestyles. Combined with the folding capabilities that enable the wheelchair to be transported easily and the wide range of options, for a person new to their wheelchair or someone with a demanding and varied lifestyle, the Xenon2 copes with all of it.
Because of the frame being made within a range, it means that the Quickie Xenon2 can also adapt to a user over a period of time, too. This assists in someone’s own journey in their change through their own condition.
Simply put – this will cater for most clinical needs of a wheelchair user.
With a base price of £2,500, it’s a significant investment. It’s a good one.