UK: London’s black cab goes green with electric powertrain image

The traditional black cab that roamed the streets of London and became a city landmark is today envisioned as a vehicle for the future – it’s going to be transformed into the Metrocab – an extended range electric vehicle.

The new version is going to reach series production as of next year, with assistance from a Canadian company. The Metrocab will be London’s first and only zero emissions black taxi in operation, according to a proposal of Frazer-Nash Research Ltd. and Ecotive Ltd., the companies behind the model – which also partnered with Canadian manufacturing company, Multimatic. The latter is also the Toronto based firm that lent a hand to Ford in building the third generation Ford GT thanks to wide range expertise in handling exotic materials, including carbon fiber. Multimatic Niche Vehicles has already manufactured complete models or body/chassis assemblies for such models as the Aston Martin One 77, Zagato and GT12 or the Lagonda Taraf. They will expand and upgrade their current factory in Coventry to handle the production of the six-passenger Metrocab. “Our prototype fleet is already operating very successfully in London, proving that our Range Extended Electric taxis are the solution to delivering on the City’s Ultra Low Emission Zones promises from 2018,” commented Metrocab Chairman Charles Masefield.

London is one of the major proponents around the world for zones that enact tough rules designed to lower both pollution and congestion.The Metrocab is already in use as a small flett operated by Comcab, and is the first zero-emissions-capable vehicle licensed to operate as a London Hackney Carriage.