When you think of the New York City taxis, you might be reminded of the iconic Ford Crown Victoria. But times are changing, and the city needed to select a new vehicle to shuttle people down its busy streets. That’s where the Nissan NV200 comes in. Fox News reports, “Nissan has won a 10-year, $1 billion contract to supply New York City with the ‘Taxi of Tomorrow,’ the vehicle that will replace the Ford Crown Victoria as the standard yellow cab for the Big Apple’s taxi operators starting in 2013”.
But Nissan wasn’t the only manufacturer making a play for New York City’s business. “Ford got an early jump on New York City’s ‘Taxi of Tomorrow’ competition – having launched a taxi version of its Transit Connect in early 2010,” writes Left Lane News. In addition to Ford and Nissan, five other companies competed for the New York Taxi and Limousine Commissions’ business, which transports more than 600,000 passengers every day.
Like the Ford Transit Connect, the NV200 is also a van initially designed for commercial use. “The Nissan NV200 taxi will be a modified version of the compact commercial vehicle currently available in global markets including Japan, Europe and China,” says Nissan in a press release. “Total manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP) of the vehicle, with all planned standard features, will be around $29,000.”
The NV200 will be built in Mexico and is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. The new taxi is designed with fuel efficiency in mind, but should also provide increased passenger comfort. “The boxy new taxi will feature a transparent roof, passenger air bags, more legroom, charging stations for mobile devices, high fuel-efficiency ratings and built-in GPS navigation systems, and enough trunk space to handle the luggage of four people,” reports the Detroit News. Additionally, Nissan is also providing New York City with six Nissan Leaf EVs. The plan is to study the use of electric vehicles as taxis, and should begin in 2012.
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