Plant production capacity, cost and number of new staff - plus an overview of the new, low emission, taxi's features.
Ansty Plant opens in Coventry
The London Taxi Company is to produce a new, eco-friendly, low emission, cab at its Ansty Plant, Coventry, that opened March 2017. This £300 million investment has created 1,000 jobs, the Plant can produce 20,000 cars per-annum for the worldwide market, and it is the first dedicated electric vehicle production facility in the UK.
Company ownership and new taxi specification
The London Taxi Company is owned by Geely Commercial Vehicles; a Chinese firm that purchased after it entered administration in 2012. The TX5 – the world's first purpose-built, mass-market, electric taxi - is the forthcoming vehicle. It is a plug-in hybrid that has a 3-cylinder petrol engine and battery-powered motors.
It can, therefore, travel on electric power only while emitting no pollution. Maximum range is 70 miles. The petrol engine provides further range and further power, as required. The battery can be charged on the move via the engine or via a socket when stationary.
The TX5 looks familiar as it inherits styling cues from its predecessor; the Euro 6 TX4. However, it has the capacity for 6 passengers rather than 5. This hybrid also incorporates a wi-fi hot-spot, mobile phone charger, wheelchair accessibility and a panoramic roof that helps tourists enjoy the skyline and landmarks.
Rebirth of company
Chris Gubbey, Chief Executive of the London Taxi Company, explained: “Today marks the rebirth of the London Taxi Company. A company that has a singular vision: to design and build dedicated urban commercial vehicles that can operate without emissions in cities around the world, and bring down running costs for drivers.”
TX5 tested in extreme conditions
TX5 test vehicles: “Will go through the most stringent testing regime in the company’s history” to ensure that “no city is off-limits” for this globally available product, The London Taxi Company explained. It has been spotted in the Arctic Circle, for example. Each test car is likely to cover about 500,000 kilometres.
Zhou Jianqan, General Manager at Geely Commercial Vehicles, revealed: “This dedicated electric vehicle plant gives LTC (London Taxi Company) and Geely the chance to lead the way in advanced British manufacturing, as we look to solve the pollution challenges facing the world’s major cities.”
“Urbanization continues at such a pace with more than a billion new city dwellers expected by 2030. This move to cities will only be sustainable if all vehicles, including taxis, go electric.”
Zhou Jianqan concluded: “Our vision is to help solve the pollution crisis - not as an add-on - but as a company dedicated to meeting the needs of commercial drivers and their passengers.”