The evolution of all-electric taxi fleets in different parts of the world continues. We recently noted a fleet of Nissan Leaf electric taxis becoming what’s said to be among the first here in the United States, and now Chinese automaker BYD has partnered with London green minicab company greentomatocars to unveil what will among that city in the United Kingdom’s first as well.
The terms of the agreement between BYD and greentomatocars means that by mid next year the latter will be making use of 50 of BYD’s all-electric e6 cars as part of its environmentally friendly fleet of 300 vehicles. This will be a trial of sorts, is and also being supported by London & Partners, which is the mayor of that city’s official promotional agency.
The two companies noted the BYD e6 is a crossover electric vehicle driven by a 75 kW motor. It is powered by BYD’s own Fe battery (Iron Phosphate battery) and has a range of up to 186 miles. It can get up to a top speed of 87 MPH. As for its uses as a passenger taxi, it is noted for having a “spacious interior” that offers decent leg and headroom for those within as well as good luggage capacity.
BYD said its e6 is already in ample use as electric taxis around the world, having driven over 14 million miles in other markets. This includes the Chinese city of Shenzhen, where plans had called for 300 of these zero-emissions vehicles to be in service since August of last year.
“It is my aim that London’s minicabs and taxis will be zero-emission by 2020,” said Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, in a statement, “which will have a major impact on air quality. Every year the fleet is getting cleaner, making our city an even more attractive place to live, work and visit. Encouraging many more electric vehicles is a key part of this transformation, so it is great news that greentomatocars has committed to operating 50 of these super clean machines from next year.”
The greentomatocars electric taxis will join other cleaner technology vehicles being used for passenger shuttling in London, including some black cabs being powered by fuel cells.