• 9
Photo by Mister-E. Licensed under Creative Commons license 2.0.

What's worse, suffering under $4 gallons of gas or having to buy a new, more efficient (but also very expensive) vehicle? For the drivers of the 6,700 taxis in Chicago, this question is being forced upon them by the City government. Two Aldermen are trying to pass a rule that will mandate that all of the city's taxicabs go green (in this case, this means a "gas-electric hybrid or powered by innovative fuels, including compressed natural gas, biodiesel, propane and hydrogen," according to CBS2 Chicago) soon. Since cabs in the city need to be replaced every four years, and the proposed rules would mandate that each new cab meet those green parameters, the Windy City's entire fleet would be cleaned up by 2014 if the rule kicks in next year as hoped. Currently, there are only 50 hybrid taxis in Chicago.

This all sounds good, but cabbies are pretty peeved. They just raised prices by $1 a ride to try and recover some of the increased fuel prices, but they're still not making money like they used to. Their biggest complain is that the hybrid premium is just too much to ask drivers and companies to swallow (although their claim that hybrids can cost $10,000 more than the standard vehicle they're replacing is a bit of a scare tactic).

[Source: CBS2 Chicago]




I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 9 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      I*m with Mike. USA and Canada used to be free countries! Besides, . . .

      Heady handed, half-informed aldermen could cause an EV / Hybrid backlash!

      Since cabs in the city need to be replaced every four years, and the proposed rules would mandate that each new cab meet those green parameters. The Windy City's entire fleet would be cleaned up by 2014 if the rule kicks in next year as hoped.

      Currently, there are only 50 hybrid taxis in
      Chicago.**

      http://cbs2chicago.com/topstories/hybrid.taxis.aldermen.2.746761.html
      ===================

      As you know, I am all for electric vehicles, so what*s wrong with this picture?

      Plenty! Pushy aldermen get Chicago cabbies to go Hybrid, but if a gas boycott happens, [ Iran / US skirmish in Hormuz], Hybrid cabs can not move a block without gasoline.

      Hybrids do save gas, but are dead in the driveway without gas. No gas? [remember 1973 or -77?]

      That could cause an awful setback for the move to EVs. Chicago cabbies know how to make their outrage known. = TG

      PS: Same page for 10 Smartest / dumbest dog breeds.
      • 7 Years Ago
      "I am sorry a crown vic costs around 25 grand, Same price as a prius, civic hybrid and maybe 3 grand less than a Camry hybrid."

      A fleet version of the CV costs a lot less than $25K. A Prius or Civic is just too small. Camry maybe. The Escape is the most likely choice. None of them are as tough or as easy to work on as a Crown Vic.

      The second part of your statement, I agree with. I doubt the initial purchase price of the vehicle is the most significant expense. I'd expect maintenance and upkeep would matter more. Again, the Crown Vic wins.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Sorry! I meant to say: "Here's an idea: Why doesn't CHICAGO offer the cabbies interest-free loans to install Poulsen Hybrid conversions? Sometimes, the carrot works better than the stick!"

      http://www.poulsenhybrid.com
      • 7 Years Ago
      Here's an idea: Why doesn't NYC offer the cabbies interest-free loans to install Poulsen Hybrid conversions? Sometimes, the carrot works better than the stick!

      http://www.poulsenhybrid.com
      • 7 Years Ago
      Here's a radical idea ... why doesn't the state bud out and let cab drivers decide when to switch to hybrids. I personally think they're monetarily foolish for not switching now; but I respect their right to be foolish.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I am sorry a crown vic costs around 25 grand, Same price as a prius, civic hybrid and maybe 3 grand less than a Camry hybrid.

      Plus it saves them a ton of money, I was talking to a cabby who said the gas savings makes him alot more money
        • 4 Years Ago
        They don't get the crowne Vic's new. They're bought at police auctions for $1500-3000
      td284
      • 7 Years Ago
      NYC Escape cabs have proved efficient, reliable and save tons on gas and pollution. The only problem? Try to buy one--they are in very short supply.

      As for the "free country" comment, car services are a business and should remain heavily regulated. If they drive around all day spewing fumes into an urban core, the city (that's all of us, not some huge unknown entity) has the right to require them to be less polluting, just like they must have seatbelts, insurance, etc. A hybrid is ideal for city conditions and they'll save a ton on gas, which should more than make up for any extra initial costs.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Owner/drivers would probably switch to Camry Hybrids they are relatively off the hook.
      The problem is with the other group of plateowners who rent cabs out to their drivers. In some areas these people have been accustomed to pick up off-lease Crown Vics at half price. Fuel economy is not in the equation for them. It's their drivers who foot that bill. Now along comes the Commission demanding they buy Prius etc instead. Well right now a pre-owned Prius comes with a much higher residual and that is what is causing plateowners to balk.
      T2