Photo by myself on Sixth Avenue in Midtown.
A 'taxi of tomorrow' coasted down Sixth Avenue, the other day. It was out for a test drive and was not available for hire.
I frankly cannot keep up with the different taxi models! For the longest time, taxis all looked alike. They were the sedan-type models, with a plastic sheet separating the front row seats from the back seats. There was a little hinged thing where you passed money to the driver.
Now, there are minivan type cabs with a couple rows of seats and doors that slide open. There are hybrid green cabs (though still painted the familiar orangey-yellow). There are cabs with the plastic sheets encasing just the driver, so you can sit in the passenger's seat.
These new taxis are designed to be wheelchair accessible; the bottom of the sliding door is about curb-height. They have charging stations in the back seat for recharging cell phones. But they aren't hybrids, which can run twice as far for each gallon of gas.
I've talked at length with cabbies about their hybrid cabs. The trouble is the parts are so expensive, when they break down, any cost savings they get from good gas mileage goes down the tube.
The new cabs are due out in a few months' time.
For more about the taxis of tomorrow, click here.
Related posts: Fixing Flats, in the Streets, Colorful Cab, in Midtown, and Evening, on Sixth Avenue.