In response to feedback from the London Mayor’s office, Transport for London and other key organisations, Nissan has redesigned its NV200 London taxi to better reflect the iconic nature of the traditional black cab.
The vehicle now sports circular headlamps, new front bumper panels and a large V-shaped front grille with vertical slats, while LEDs improve the visibility of the taxi sign on the roof. No Nissan grille badge, though.
Developed in London, for London, by Nissan Design Europe in Paddington, the Nissan NV200 Taxi for London is set to launch in December 2014. A 115 hp/158 Nm 1.6 litre petrol engine will drive the front wheels through an auto gearbox. CO2 emissions should duck under 180 grams, but a zero-emissions electric version, the e-NV200 taxi, is set to be launched in 2015.
Among the taxi’s planned features are a driver/passenger partition, second-row tip seats with integrated seat backs, a three-passenger 60:40-split bench seat, a panoramic glass roof, a rear heater and rear controls, Bluetooth and a reverse camera for the driver, provisions for wheelchair access and position, plus 12V and USB chargers for passengers. The floor and seats are vinyl.
“The Mayor’s office and taxi drivers were very keen that we maintain the character of the Hackney Carriage, making it something that people in the city can be proud of,” said Nissan Design Europe design excellence manager Darryl Scriven.
“The main challenges were concerned with making sure customers can easily recognise it as a taxi. Being in London, we were able to go out and talk to cabbies about what was important to them as well as look at the vehicle from a customer’s viewpoint.”
Nissan isn’t new to the black cab world – its 2.7 litre TD27 diesel engine powered the FX4 ‘Fairway’ and TX1 cabs during the 1980s and 1990s, gaining a reputation for reliability and durability.