There are several things that are synonymous with Great Britain. Big Ben, The Queen, red telephone boxes, bowler hats, and bacon sandwiches. Something else that is just as iconic is the way we get around London. The famous red bus and London Underground have had their turn at being modernised, now the black cab takes centre stage. The men and women who pass the infamous “knowledge” test will soon be offered a car befitting of the technological age we live in. But will it retain enough tradition to be accepted?
Currently the fleet of black cabs run on diesel fuel and their canal boat sound effects can be heard all over the city. The new London Taxi Company TX5 is powered by a four cylinder petrol engine as well as a battery. Improved efficiency and cleaner emissions are key to the design. Visually it is still that recognisable silhouette, but it now features more fluid character lines which all together makes for a more premium design. Seating six, the new black cab will give occupants access to Wi-Fi, charging ports for smartphones, and a view out of a glass panoramic roof.
There is still more testing to be done, obviously these cabs will be worked hard and so reliability needs to be bulletproof. Expect to see the new black cab on the streets of London by 2017.