The iconic Ford Crown Victoria New York yellow cabs are on their way out, to be replaced a Nissan van beginning in late 2013. The 2014 Nissan NV200 Taxi recently made its global debut at a special event in SoHo. The Taxi of Tomorrow then made its way to the New York International Auto Show, which is still ongoing at the Jacob Javits Center.

If you remember, Nissan won NYC’s Taxi of Tomorrow competition, which gives it exclusive rights to provide the replacement for the over 13,000 yellow cabs that criss cross the Big Apple.

It was a rigorous, two-year selection process by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum and the Design Trust for Public Space and Smart Design also engaged with Nissan/TLC in the cab’s design.

“The Nissan NV200 unveiled today will be the safest, most comfortable and most convenient taxi the City has ever had. New York City cabs have always been iconic, and now they will set a new standard. The 600,000 passengers who use taxis to get around every day deserve the cutting-edge technology and top-of-the-line safety features that this model delivers,” said New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

The 2.0-litre four-cylinder powered NV200 Taxi has ample room for four passengers and their luggage, and is obviously a big improvement over the Crown Vic. Access is via sliding doors, aided by an entry step and grab handles. The rear air con is independently controlled and the headliner is infused with active carbon to neutralise odour. The leather-like seat fabric is breathable, antimicrobial, durable and easy-to-clean.

New Yorkers will also enjoy overhead reading lights and floor lighting to help locate belongings. A mobile charging station for passengers, including a 12-volt electrical outlet and two USB ports will be extremely useful for the exec on the go. Safety is not forgotten with front and rear-seat occupant curtain airbags.

But the part that interests me most as a potential tourist will be the NV200’s transparent roof panel, especially nice in a skyscraper dominated city like New York. One day, one day…

The Nissan NV200 is available solely as a panel van in Malaysia. Click here for our previous post on it.