This probably isn't Mr. T's idea of a DC cab, but we'll forgo the not-so-classic 1983 flick and celebrate.
A Washington, DC-area taxicab operator is planning to have an all-electric fleet of cabs by ordering about 40 Nissan Leaf vehicles, Zeenews reports.
Electric Vehicle Taxicab Company, which operates out of Arlington, VA, says it'll have the largest all-electric fleet of taxis and will complement them with 56 DC fast-charging stations in the company's service area. Company founder Malik Khattak says the cabs will serve the dual purpose of cutting elimination while reducing repair costs, in part because of their lack of oil changes.
Cabs have great potential to cut fleetwide pollution because of the relatively high number of miles driven and, until recently, the fact that they are usually gas guzzlers. New York will replace many of its older cabs with more fuel-efficient Nissan NV 200 utility vehicles starting late next year, while Nissan promoted the Leaf this past June by giving out free cab rides in the London area. Leafs have also been tested as taxis in New York (pictured) and Mexico City.
In the past, Nissan has said that frequent fast charging will limit battery life and that it doesn't expect Leaf owners to fast-charge every day, but cab operator Khattak doesn't appear to be worried about this. Nissan has said that the Leaf's batteries should retain about 80 percent of their capacity after five years, less with lots of fast charging. At the very least, this will be a good, real-world test for the car and its batteries.