We’ve heard of tight turning circles, but Arctic circles??
Spare a thought for the humble London taxi-cab – as we write this the probably-not-as-much-loved-as-it-used-to-be-thanks-to-Uber distinctive vehicle with the ludicrous turning circle and room in the back for snogging couples is being put through its paces somewhere near the Arctic Circle.
You read that right – the Arctic Circle! It’s all part of London Taxi Company owner Geely’s rigorous programme of testing for the latest model to roll off the production line – an all new electric version, no less.
And if you thought the Arctic Circle was cold (it is – ed) then how about this – the cab is set to be placed in a giant fridge which will cool it to temperatures exceeding -49 centigrade. Even nippier than January in London at Waterloo station, after your Southern Train just got cancelled and you had to find a hotel for the night!
“Our new taxi is being developed with two key engineering principles – quality and endurance, to meet the needs of the demanding taxi duty cycle”, says Quality Director Wolfram Liedtke.
“It will be, without doubt, the highest quality and resilient product in London Taxi’s 98-year history.”
Cripes – the artic temperatures ruse is to ensure that the cab’s heating and ventilation systems can continue to perform to the highest standards, “no matter how bitter or oppressive the temperature outside”, and that grip, drivability and visibility are all up to scratch too, whatever the weather.
The London Taxi Company are splashing out on a new facility which will be opened on 22nd March, paid for thanks to a £300 million-pound investment from Chinese automaker Geely.
According to a recent feature in the BBC, black cabs have been responsible for 15% of the poisonous gases produced by traffic in central London, and that’s just the drivers mouthing off about cyclists!
We jest of course – still, the all new electric versions, which will partly rely on 150 new charging stations by 2018, and 300 by 2020, should put the black cab back on the map – to the delight of London’s tourists, no doubt.
Plus, the BBC, and didn’t we see a black cab featured on Top Gear at the weekend too?
It seems somebody has a PR budget to spend.
Beep beep – watch your backs, Uber!