A new ruling by the Taxi & Limousine Commission requires all taxis purchased after October 1, 2008 to achieve at least 25MPG. For comparison, the taxi staple, the Ford Crown Victoria gets 14MPG. After all of 2009, that number increases to 30MPG. Being that taxi fleet owners have to replace cabs every 3-5 years, this could mean that by October 1, 2013 all cabs may be hybrid, pretty much right in line with Mayor Bloomberg’s goal of an all hybrid taxi fleet by 2012. Of the 13,000 taxis in NYC, only 630 are currently hybrids.
Why the big push, you might wonder? According to TLC Chairman Matthew Daus, the fuel efficiency vote was “a giant leap for the environment.” He added, “This regulation, the first of its kind anywhere, lays the groundwork for the cleanest, greenest large city taxicab fleet in the world,” he said in a statement.
Ford sells about 3,000 Crown Victorias as taxis in NYC each year. Ford spokesman Jim Cain did say that Ford is committed to the taxi industry and that the company is working on some fuel efficiency initiatives in addition to the Escape hybrid it currently has.
Dropping the Escape hybrids powertrain into a Fusion would be a good start. A large sized hybrid Taurus would be the ultimate though. After all, it already gets 20MPG city with its beefy 263-hp V6.
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