News : London Taxis head down under… and turn white

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Keith Adams

London Taxi

The London Taxi is heading down under, thanks to a deal struck with the authorities in Perth, Western Australia. A test sample of 98 used white factory demonstrator ‘hot-climate’ TX4s have been shipped to Australia as part of a trial to test the iconic vehicle there with a view to a further 200 being shipped out in 2014.

The cabs, which form the first large export order for the recently renamed London Taxi Company, will be taking to the streets in Perth within the next few weeks. The fleet will perform vital hot weather testing for the Coventry-based company, which is now fully-owned by the Chinese car company Geely and which saw production restart recently, as well as alleviate the current shortage of cabs in Perth.

One Perth operator who purchased a fleet of the 50 bright, white used TX4s has already had a stampede of drivers who want to be the first ones to buy a cab and partake in the trial

The Chief Executive of The London Taxi Company (Aust.) Limited, Evan Simeon has confirmed that there is much interest in the vehicles. ‘We couldn’t have asked for a better welcome.’ he said. ‘One Perth operator who purchased a fleet of the 50 bright, used white TX4s has already had a stampede of drivers who want to be the first ones to buy a cab and partake in the trial.’

With the additional Australian order for 200 new vehicles Evan also confirmed that the State of Victoria may well be the next destination to welcome the global icon in 2014.

‘When you have a look at the majority of current existing taxis, they are converted sedans which were not built to be cabs and therefore they are simply not fit for the purpose. The beauty of the London Taxi TX4 is that it is the only global vehicle built to be as a cab, so we anticipate that they will be a lot of demand for it across Australia,’ Evan added.

Western Australian Government Transport Minister, Troy Buswell, said the trial was part of his Taxi Action Plan, which aimed to improve the security, standards and availability of Perth taxis, and that the purpose-built taxis were designed and manufactured specifically to improve safety, comfort and accessibility.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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23 Comments

  1. Hopefully will lead to some ‘new’ orders for LTi.

    Good publicity nonetheless.

    A bit more character than a Nissan van…

  2. This is good news – I really hope the London Taxi Company and Coventry production and operations thrive under Geely.

  3. Well done. Takes a lot to keep the Tommy down. First class. Carry on.
    …..but seriously, great news following on from all the doom and gloom a few months ago.

  4. why couldn’t the original owners do more to export their products? I sometimes despair at the incompetence of British management.

  5. What we really need down here is your standard of taxi drivers. Ours have a lamentable lack of “the knowledge”.

  6. Good timing. With the current domestically-produced Oz taxi (the Ford Falcon) due to be killed off in a couple of years, there’s a void to be filled.

  7. Re 11: In this case, it’s got nothing to do with “… the incompetence of British management.” LTI simply couldn’t afford to homolagate their products to sell in many markets – it costs a huge amount to do so.

  8. Funny how the Merc Vito pollutes more than the TX4,but when you have bent MP’s on the board of the fleet firm supplying them what do you expect?

  9. Sorry, not making sense to me. Nearly 100 of these white second-hand vehicles were just knocking about the factory? Operators in Australia, which I understand to be a predominantly hot country, are buying these vehicles so that LTC can hot-weather test them? Wouldn’t the operators be better off buying a new vehicle that had been properly hot-weather tested (like a ubiquitous Avensis or Mercedes) and simply bolting a For Hire box on the top?

  10. @18: I suspect they may have a surplus of vehicles at the factory and offered the Australian taxi firms a more than excellent deal that makes them cheaper than the suggested alternatives.

    Still, it is good to see that they are getting orders for the cab. Maybe not so good that the cars are coming from China rather than Holyhead Road though.

  11. More imports. Great. Just what Australia needs. I’m no frod
    lover- I depise ’em in fact. But at least the Falcon was
    made here & kept some jobs in this country.

    And I’m cynical about the “hot climate package” too.
    Too many British & European designs (tanks, planes, cars) are too short legged & under cooled for Australian conditions

  12. we had a batch of Metro cabs here in the 80s but they were under powered and had to be reworked to accept Holden Commodore 3.5 litre V6 engines and auto trans together with the commodore rear axle and front disc brakes.
    They finally died due to the Falcon taxi users rubbishing them.

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