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Wed Aug 21, 2013, 11:49 PM

Powering the Future: New York City's taxi of the future (includes video)

NEW YORK Shrewd New Yorkers may have spotted some sleek silver and yellow cabs racing around the city's streets.

They're the newest taxis being tested out in a pilot program to see how electric cabs can survive in one of the busiest places in the world, where roads look like "ploughed fields," according to one veteran New York City taxi driver.

The city-run program is to see if New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's plan of having one-third of the taxi fleet be electric by 2020 is actually feasible.

"That's absolutely do-able. What we need to do is put chargers throughout the city so taxis can charge up. The technology is there ... now we've got to find the space and get the installations done. That's real work, but it's absolutely do-able," said David Yassky, New York City's Taxi and Limousine Commissioner, in an interview with CBSNews.com.

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-35040_162-57598914/powering-the-future-new-york-citys-taxi-of-the-future/



New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg arrives in an electric taxicab for a press conference on April 22, 2013 in New York.
/ AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Original post)

Wed Aug 21, 2013, 11:59 PM

1. Very cool, but unlikely that they'd need "chargers throughout the city:...

The average cabby drive up to 180 miles in a 12 hour shift, about double what the Nissan Leaf (in the photo) can do on a single charge.

Even if they install fast Level II chargers, it'll take hours to recharge so a more practical solution would be to swap out cabs.

This favors the bigger companies, but it makes more sense than required lots of chargers to be shared by cabs.

OTOH, lots of chargers, if open to the public, would be very cool.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:13 AM

3. Between the bicycles and now electric cabs, Bloomberg really is determined!

I think you're absolutely right and he'd probably appreciate the suggestion.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:21 AM

8. An even more practical solution is to design a version of the Leaf that will hold three batteries

The Nissan website claims the fast charge port on a Leaf will allow it to be recharged in 30 minutes of sitting there not making money. That's what, about 30 days to a cabbie?

Assigning one driver two cars means putting an electric cab on the road will cost $60,000 rather than $30,000.

Now...if they were to put enough battery capacity in a car to let it run 200 miles on a charge, their problems would be solved.

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Response to jmowreader (Reply #8)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:29 AM

9. Of course, fast charging cars w more batteries would be better, but then they'll do the 180 miles...

So, again, we wouldn't need the chargers throughout the city for drivers to do their 12 hour shifts.

The Leaf and iMiev and Ford Focus EV all have ranges <100 miles but that will be fixed in a few years, I think.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Original post)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:03 AM

2. I hope they have leg room.

I hate no leg room.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #2)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:16 AM

4. When I first moved to NYC, most of the cabs were Checkers.

Gawd, what a car!

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #4)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:18 AM

5. They still had them in the 80's when i was a kid.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #2)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:19 AM

6. They don't look very big, do they?

I've taken cabs in England and, from what I remember, they have lots of leg room, but they're not as environmentally friendly.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #6)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:20 AM

7. I was in them when I went to the UK and yes they have leg room.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #7)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:32 AM

10. I think I was only in a New York cab once.

I went to a riding camp on Lake Champlain as a kid and we had a reunion every year in New York when they had the National Horse Show.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #10)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:38 AM

11. I get car sick so I take trains.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #11)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:43 AM

12. That's how we'd get to New York for the horse show!

My friend lived in NJ and we'd take the trains in - at 14, or so. Either that, or we'd stay with a friend who lived on Park Avenue. She'd chaperon us all on the subway.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #12)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 12:48 AM

13. NY has a ton of trains all over the state.

But we could always use more.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #13)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 01:06 AM

14. My NJ aunt would write down directions and I'd also take the trains to see my friend

I can't believe we'd ride back and forth alone at that age. I remember one time, late at night and on an almost empty train, we were serenaded with "Thank Heavens for Little Girls" by an elderly drunk.

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Response to Rhiannon12866 (Reply #14)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 01:08 AM

15. Well the trains are safe for the most part at night.

I never had a problem.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #15)

Thu Aug 22, 2013, 01:13 AM

16. My aunt didn't seem worried about it and neither did my friend's mother

And, being from the sticks, I was too na´ve to know...

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