The London EV Taxi: Electric Public Transportation 

LEVC electric London taxi

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It Was Love At First Sight With The All-White Lower Emission ‘London Black Cab’! 

For years I used to anguish at the sight of taxi stands in London.  Long queues of ‘London black cabs’ parked with the engines running and spitting out horrendous pollutants, while waiting to serve customers.  In fact, I detested these polluting taxis to such an extent, that I always preferred walking! 

So, the joy on my middle-aged face, will not come as a surprise, when I first spotted an electric taxi in London.  I cannot recall the date or month, another sign of my middle-age, but I vividly recall the ‘white’ black cab silently pass by me.  I was frozen with excitement.  By the time I got my smartphone out to take a photograph, the lower emission ‘angel’ had flown away.  

From then on, the sightings increased rapidly. Today, electric taxis in London are as common as the Toyota Prius traditional hybrid, driven by Uber drivers. Despite the increase in the number of LEVC TX electric taxi’s on London roads, any sighting, always feels like ‘love at first sight’.  I hope other cities in the U.K. adopt lower emission taxis or also know as ultra low emission vehicles (ULEVs).

LEVC TX electric taxi London
LEVC Electric Taxi (credit: LEVC)

But before you use a taxi, I would urge you to consider walking.  If time and weather permitting, you can walk to your destination, it is a far more favourable outcome for you and the environment.  I am proud to say, I walk to most of my destinations in London, irrespective of the weather.  

Now for those, really keen on a taxi, I urge you to use only the electric  black cabs.  The greater the use of electric taxis, the lower the local pollution levels.  It really is quite as simple as that! 

  • London Electric Vehicle Company (LEVC) rebranded its name to London EV Company (LEVC) to demonstrate its commitment and vision to zero-emission road transportation
  • The company is based in Coventry but owned by a giant Chinese automotive company called Geely.  For those unfamiliar with this name, the automotive behemoth also owns Lotus Cars and Volvo.  I trust you get the picture! 
  • LEVC has a vision far more encompassing than just manufacturing emission-free taxis.  The company aims to ‘become the leading European electric commercial vehicle provider’. 
  • The LEVC TX (petrol-powered-range-extender) electric taxi was launched in 2017.  It has a zero-emission range of 64.5 miles on the WLTP cycle (up to 81 miles on NEDC).  The total range, to include the range-extender is 377 miles. Not surprisingly, the petrol engine is sourced from Volvo.  
  • The lithium-ion battery has been tested ‘over millions of miles’ and comes with a 5 year unlimited mileage battery warranty.  The battery capacity is 31 kWh.
  • The battery can be charged at home in just below 4 hours (7kW charger) costing less than £3.  The EV is compatible with rapid charging (50kW) and can be fully charged in 30 minutes for around £7. 
  • The LEVC EV accelerates from 0 to 62 mph in 13.2 seconds with a maximum speed of 80 mph.  
  • The TX has been designed and built ‘ground up’ on a dedicated platform. It comfortably seats 6 passengers and a luggage capacity of 440 L.
  • The passenger cabin feels far more refined with lower noise and more room. 
  • Bottom-line: an incredible achievement in combining the strengths of the tradition black cab, with 21stcentury lower emission technology

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Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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