What’s being heralded as one of the nation’s first all-electric fleets of taxi cabs could soon be hitting the streets in Arlington, Virginia. The fleet would consist of Nissan Leaf electric cars and would include a supporting infrastructure capable of keeping this fleet going around the clock.
EV Taxicabs, according to the Washington Examiner, needs to first gain approval of the Arlington county board of supervisors before it can begin operation. It looks likely it will happen, given that the county manager there has already recommended the company be granted approval for 40 cabs out of a total of 65 new vehicles being added to the county’s existing 765 cabs.
The start up electric cab company said it had formed an alliance with Nissan USA to operate its fleet of Leaf electric cars. EV Taxicabs is going all high tech in looking to distinguish itself from other cab companies, having a “cloud-based” dispatch system, smart phone/Internet reservation system, on-board 4G wireless Internet connectivity and iPads available for passenger usage to enjoy shows and also pay with a credit card when the ride is over.
With a range of 73 miles and a combined fuel economy at 99 miles per gallon gasoline equivalent, the 40 electric cabs will need a good supporting EV charging infrastructure if they truly plan to be operated 24/7. To this end, the cab company will pony up to install fifty Level II chargers and six Level III DC fast chargers “strategically deployed around the county” should it win approval to begin operations. The chargers will come courtesy of Aerovironment, which is a distributor of the Level III chargers for Nissan, and they will be available for public use as well.
EV Taxicabs will join a handful of other companies, such as EcoCab out of Washington State, in attempting to have a taxi fleet that is all zero emissions.