Maker of London taxis getting global interest

By Angus McNeice in London | China Daily UK | Updated: 2017-07-12 16:57

Maker of London taxis getting global interest

The new TX London taxi will be powered by a hybrid engine.[Photo provided to China Daily]

The London Taxi Company, which is owned by Chinese automaker Geely, has announced it has rebranded as the London EV Company (also known as LEVC) at an unveiling ceremony for its TX electric taxi on Tuesday.

Chris Gubbey, CEO of LEVC, also announced the company had landed a contract with Dutch firm RMC for 225 of the vehicles for Amsterdam. Gubbey said the company's ambition is to move beyond the London market.

"Today's announcement …demonstrates the need for EV urban commercial vehicles across Europe and the world," he said, noting that LEVC is in talks to deliver cars to several other European cities.

Geely is constructing a factory in China that will produce the TX and plans to roll out the vehicles in Chinese cities.

Geely acquired The London Taxi Company in 2013 for 11 million pounds ($14.2 million) and has invested 325 million pounds in the business, including a 300-million-pound factory in Coventry to build the TX.

Gubby said: "Four years ago, people didn't anticipate this. The company was just out of receivership and going through tough times. But, early on, the message from Geely was clear; the company was going to invest in the product."

The TX maintains the iconic look of a London black cab but combines an electric powertrain and battery with a small petrol generator, giving the car

a range of around 110 kilometers on pure electric and a combined range of more than 640 kilometers. It is a "series hybrid", with all four wheels always powered by electricity and the petrol engine charging the battery when needed.

"One of the things that people worry about, even with a private car, is range anxiety," he said. "With a commercial vehicle that becomes a critical part of the business."

The TX order book opens on Aug 1 and will start with taxi drivers who can buy the new hybrid vehicle through a payment plan. Each driver should save around 100 pounds a week on their fuel bill.

British legislation stipulates that all new London black cabs must be battery-powered from Jan 1, 2018. London's transport authority, Transport for London,expects that 9,000 taxis will be zero-emission vehicles by the end of 2020.


Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349