London’s electric black cab has, we think it’s fair to say, been a long time coming.
Well today the company that makes the vehicles has confirmed that six of them are currently driving around the capital as they go through the final and perhaps most gruelling test environment: London’s traffic.
The six vehicles and their drivers will be collecting data that records not only the emissions coming from the vehicle but also looks to asses the state of London’s charging network.
Each car is driven by an electric motor which can then be charged via a 1.3 litre petrol-powered generator.
The car has a fully-electric range of around 70-miles but if you turn on the petrol generator that range increases to some 400-miles.
While it’s certainly not going to compete with the range of say a Tesla, these vehicles have been designed to at the very least comply with the “zero emission capable” requirement for all London taxis from January 2018.
Compared to the previous petrol-powered black cabs, the new TX5 has a larger cabin that contains six seats, WiFi, USB-charging and the ability to process contactless payments.
The driver meanwhile will have access to a full-touchscreen that provides them with a SatNav specifically designed to show congestion while also showing every available charging location in London.
In addition the screen will also feature integrated ride-hailing services including Gett, myTaxi and Kabbee.
The cabs are expected to get a full roll out on London’s streets later this year.