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NYC's Newest Taxis: Minivans With Phone Chargers

Redesigned cabs unveiled this week will hit the streets in 2013.

The city’s redesigned taxi fleet will have more legroom, non-stick, anti-bacterial seats, a sunroof and outlets for cell phone charging, according to New York City’s website.

Made by Nissan, the cars will also have independent passenger climate controls and passenger reading lights and two USB ports for laptop charging.

The “Taxis of Tomorrow,” for New York City was unveiled Tuesday at the New York International Auto Show, Bloomberg News reported.

The cabs look like minivans, but are slightly smaller than the Crown Victoria models of today. They are expected to get about 25 miles per gallon, according to NPR

The taxis, which cost $29,700 a piece, will begin appearing on New York’s streets in the fall of 2013, according to NPR and will replace the city’s entire 13,000-car fleet by 2018, Bloomberg reported.

The Nissan NV200 beat out proposals by Turkish automaker KarsanUSA, which offered an automated wheelchair ramp, and Ford, which came out with a wider and roomier version of the Crown Victoria, with better mileage, .

Jean Ryan of the Taxis for All Campaign criticized the choice for not being wheelchair accessible. According to Nissan, the cab can be modified to fit a wheelchair, but that might add upwards of $12,000 to the price, NPR reported.

"Nobody with a disability can ride it. And we call that segregation and discrimination," Ryan told NPR.

Currently, about 230 city cabs—about 2 percent of the fleet—are accessible. Around 60,000 wheelchair users live in the city, according to the Disability Network of New York City’s website.

Steve Crowell April 06, 2012 at 10:16 AM
It's a socialist vision. It is not legal from what I know about the law. The USDOT doesn't say you must use Bendix brakes, they don't even specify disc vs shoe brakes. The USDOT specifies performance standards only. The car has to be able to stop fast enough. The NYC TLC has way overstepped here. They have been looking for some car maker to 'get in bed with them' for decades. If I owned medallions I'd challenge any rejection of... say my Infinti, BMW or Benz Crossover NYC taxi at cab inspection time - in court. The TLC has a lot to learn about regulating, if they want to get in compliance with federal standards. I keep reading about how this is the first NYC taxi with a partition to ever get crash tested. If the results were good... I'm sure we'd be hearing about it. Why the sudden interest in federal crashworthiness? These NYC cabs, with their illegal partitions, have been crash testing with real live subjects for 43 years now. The results have been disastrous according to Dr.'s G. Sbordone, G. Doughlin, G. Husk, J. Sherman, A. Konisar, S. Blaugrund, M. Camins, P. Lorenc, K. Sturmann, M. Melrose... all Boston or NYC trauma surgeons, plastic surgeons, chiropracters, and neurosurgeons who have treated taxi partition impact victims for years. I have been ringing the alarm about the lack of compliance in NYC and Boston taxi partition design for decades.
Sara April 13, 2012 at 05:24 PM
I voted on these! Don't remember which I voted for now, lol, but this looks pretty cool. A real shame about it not being handicapped accessible..

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