The London Taxi Company (LTC) has opened a new plant to produce what it says is the world’s first purpose-built, mass-market plug-in taxi. LTC, a subsidiary of Chinese automaker Geely, has invested £300 million ($374 million) in the next-generation London taxi, which will be produced at the plant in Ansty, Coventry, and exported around the world.
The site has the capacity to build more than 20,000 vehicles per year. The new taxi uses Volvo electric powertrain components, and retains the classic black cab design recognized around the world.
The new cab will go on sale in London in the fourth quarter of 2017, then globally in early 2018.
The second vehicle model to come off the new line will be a plug-in light commercial van (LCV), based on the same platform as the taxi. LTC expects to bring the new LCV to market with an additional investment of around £30 million ($37 million).
“The manufacturing of this all new light commercial van is a transformative step for the company, as we will [become] a multi-product, multi-market organization,” said Carl-Peter Forster, Chairman of the London Taxi Company.
“The light commercial van sector in cities across the globe holds enormous potential and urban leaders are embracing zero emissions at an incredibly rapid pace,” said Zhou Jianqan, head of Geely’s Commercial Vehicle Division. “This vehicle is a result of the new R&D team based at Ansty.”
Source: London Taxi Company via Green Car Congress