Just caught this in traffic; no, its not in Asia somewhere (obviously). We have a pretty eclectic mix of cabs here, but this one surprised me.
Wow, I thought we used random cars for cabs in Detroit. That Suzuki fails the basic cab test of being able to carry a lot of people AND a lot of stuff. The Metropolitan cab company near me is great. While most of the cars are retired police Panthers, they have a lot of random minivans and will use just about any midsized sedan made in the last 20 years. I couldn’t find any pictures online, but all their cars are painted purple. Trim, badges and all.
I always liked the looks of the Esteem, but talk about a basic, plain car. The interior is designed well enough, but the plastics are all hard as a rock.
Hyundai diesels and prius are popular here
That is one car I’d never identify without badges. It’s almost as bland as the first rehash of the Malibu/Cutlass.
I’ve, luckily, only had to Cab it when I go downtown. So far the Chebbie minivans and Xb have been the best experience.
Most taxis out here are Falcons running on LPG, sedans and wagons, along with Toyota vans for large groups or wheelchairs. In other cities the Prius are popular.
A discussion on a forum a few days ago had someone spot a Falcon taxi that had done 1.3 million km (800k miles), on the original engine but a couple of transmissions & diffs. That is about as high as you would see, as the cars have to be turned over after 5 years.
Those detuned Cabs go forever on LPG on petrol not so far
Wow… talk about random cars!
If anyone has visited NYC in the past 5 years you will have seen Nissan Altimas (of all things) taxis toiling the roads. Having worked in Manhattan off/on for the past 2 decades I have seen Square Caprices’, Rounded Caprices’, Panthers, Honda/Toyota minivans and the aforementioned Altimas, what’s next…..Toyota Corollas????
As notable as NYC’s taxi fleet downsize is it has a long way to go to compare to say, Bogota Colombia where Geo Prizms (not our sedans but the smaller 2 dr hatches) perform the yeoman work.
NYC has a weird relationship with Altimas. When I lived there the NYPD unmarked car of choice was the Altima. It was a trip to see the undercovers doing drug busts in my neighborhood in them (which was often). Nothing about an Altima says “tough street cop.” I guess that’s kind of the point.
You got give the NYPD credit then because who would suspect cops in an Altima? I suspect they now use the the OTT testosterone Chargers which screams undercover cop car to me.
I had to look that up because I thought it must be a bigger sibling, but no I’d correctly identified the blandness.
We got the same model badged as the Suzuki Baleno & they’d be too small as cabs here in Europe never mind over there in the land of the Supersize!
Got it as the Baleno here too, but only with the 1600cc G16B engine.
Speaking of small taxis, I was in Barcelona this past summer with my family and I was surprised at how much stuff you can fit in a compact minivan (more specifically, a high-roof hatch).
The taxi we took was a Seat Altea XL. It swallowed up four large pieces of luggage, four carry-ons, a laptop bag, two adults and two kids, plus the driver. Of course, I was eating my knees the whole way to the hotel, but whatever. Those cab drivers sure know how to pack the stuff in.
Much different than the Panthers, minivans, and mid-sized cars used in our small corner of Canada. Basically, the rule here is that all cabs can be no more than seven model years old and are inspected regularly. Anything goes.
We’ve got 2001-2005 Civics and 2003-current Corollas serving in cab duty here in greater Seattle. Eastside for Hire tends to be the big user of them, and I imagine their fuel efficiency makes way more sense than a fuel-gorging Panther. Plus, they’re much cheaper to purchase than a Prius – even used.
here’s an example of a Bogotan Cab…… or rickshaw.
Although most Costa Rican cabs are smaller than this, there are a few that are this size. It’s the wrong color though – all taxis in CR are red. It must be a requirement.
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