Nissan's new London taxi

Nissan has shown a modified version of the NV200 van that it plans to offer as a taxi in London

Nissan has unveiled a new taxi version of the NV200 van for London. Set to be priced substantially under its rivals, it’s likely to transform the streetscape of the capital.

London’s stringent ‘Conditions of Fitness’ standards for taxis have long stood as a barrier to manufacturers looking to offer their vehicles as London cabs. The best known of these is the requirement that any licenced black cab must have a turning circle of no more than 25ft to enable it to U-turn on narrow streets. At the moment London’s cab fleet is mostly made up of variants of the ‘classic’ TX taxi, which was introduced in the late 1990s and which is still being produced today.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Subscribe today to have every issue of evo delivered straight to you. You'll SAVE 39% on the shop price, and get evo for its original cover price for a whole year!

Nissan has re-engineered the NV200 to meet the conditions of fitness requirements, with the front track boosted by a massive 200mm over the standard van and an innovative ‘revo-knuckle’ style front strut to give enough wheel articulation to meet the turning circle requirement. It will be offered with the choice of two 1.5-litre diesel engines, Renault-Nissan’s dCi four-cylinder in 89bhp and 109bhp states of tune. But as the automatic gearbox that all London’s cabbies regard as their right will only be available with the more powerful engine, you can anticipate that representing the vast majority of sales. Nissan is also committed to trialing an all-electric version of the cab next year, and potentially putting this on sale in 2014.

Other manufacturers have already tried to break into this highly specialised market, with a taxi-ised version of the Mercedes Vito van already passed for use in London. The Merc using hydraulically activated rear hubs to achieve the turning circle, and it’s fair to say that sales have been modest so far. Nissan is promising to substantially undercut the existing LTI TX4 with the NV200, which will go on sale for under £30,000. There are only 22,000 Hackney cabs in London, but Nissan sees the city’s global prominence as being a good way of promoting its brand – a less modified version of the NV200 has already been approved as the next taxi for New York City.

Most Popular


McLaren 765LT 2020 review – latest Long Tail returns to reset the status quo

McLaren’s latest Long Tail fulfills its brief in once again pushing the supercar to the next level, the 765LT just has to prove its magic on the road …
29 Sep 2020
Lexus LC

Lexus LC500 Convertible 2020 review – eccentric cabriolet is as glamorous as it looks

The eccentric LC500 cabriolet is better than a boulevard cruiser and feels every inch the halo product Lexus intended
29 Sep 2020
Ford Mustang

Ford Mustang Mach-E GT turns up electric SUV to 459bhp

The all-electric Ford Mustang Mach-E SUV has gained a hot GT variant, rivalling Tesla’s Model Y Performance
28 Sep 2020
Porsche Panamera

Porsche Panamera Turbo S 2020 review 

Monster straight-line pace and impressive handling, but the Panamera sweet spot is found elsewhere
26 Sep 2020