• Nov 16th 2010 at 1:01PM
  • 65
Ford Transit Connect NYC Taxi Cab – Click above for high-res image gallery

New York City is one step closer to choosing its next official taxi cab. With the Ford Crown Victoria getting on in years, the city is looking for a more efficient and functional way to move its citizens around. So far, the designs have been whittled down to three choices, and no matter who comes out on top, you can bet that the world will be seeing a lot more minivans in the Big Apple. Nissan, Ford and a Turkish company by the name of Karsan all have designs in the final round, and each eschews the traditional sedan taxi form in favor of something with a taller roof line.

Right now, New York City uses a fleet of 13,200 cabs built by a variety of manufacturers, but none of the vehicles are purpose-built people movers. For the next generation, NYC wanted a vehicle that was specifically designed to handle the average 70,000 miles of stop-and-go abuse per year that the city's taxi fleet endures.

Ford has thrown a version of its Transit Connect into the fracas, while Nissan's effort looks to be an industrial minivan that the company says could be fully electric in just a few years. Meanwhile, the Karsan design is spacious and wheel-chair accessible.

The winning design is set to be selected next year, with the new cabs hitting the street by the Fall of 2014. Thanks to all for the tips!

[Sources: NPR, WNYC]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Doesn't that remind you of the cabs in "Total Recall"?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Isn't that Nissan minivan one of their JDM cars? So I am not sure why some of you guys are saying that Ford has the only vehicle that is actually being built.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Like I always say, the easiest ways to get criticized by AOL readers is to either disagree with obama/liberals, or defend America.

      I say the Ford option should win.
      • 4 Years Ago
      It is beyond belief that anything other than a
      USA manufactured taxi would even be under
      • 4 Years Ago
      The NISSAN van has been built in Smyrma, TN for atleast the past 5 years. And what car manuf. has a totally battery driven vehicle in the U.S. - TODAY ? NISSAN - - Leaf! Even in 2012, when these Taxis are supposed to be on the NYC roads - FORD still will NOT have an Electric vehicle anywhere in the U.S. or a U.S. plant making Taxis .
      • 4 Years Ago
      I see the Blade Runner/Total Recall future is imminent. I can totally picture some kind of robot piloting that Turkish one.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm conflicted. I support Ford as the Transit Connect is a proven vehicle here already and it will generate enough extra sales to further justify bringing the traditional RWD Transit over here. On the other hand, I support Karsan as its vehicle is wheelchair-accessible (and I am wheelchair-bound). HELP!
      • 4 Years Ago
      All of this is probably irrelevant because I'm guessing the fleet owners will want to retain the right to buy what cars they desrire. It'll be broken in court like the hybrid thing they did a few years back. One of the major point here is the ability to buy used cars, I'm betting we'll start to see lots more rental fleet Impalas in the steets.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The Nissan in the picture is a Nissan NV200.
      Sold here in Europe as a van and a minivan.

      Been driving around in a VAN version of the NV200 for almost a year now.
      Good car, bigger in size then the Transit Connect.. but not too big to be annoying in a urban environment.

        • 4 Years Ago
        The NV200 is International Van of the Year

        It is a much more modern vehicle with more interior room, better gas mileage and more suspension travel (important for pot holes) than the Ford while offering more options in a similar footprint.

        The Transit Connect is based on the first-generation Focus. It is essentially a 16 year old car now and will be a 27 year old car by the end of the contract.

        Brand allegiances and politics aside, the NV200 is a better vehicle.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'll put my money down on Ford & Nissan splitting the fleet, with additional financial incentives for both manufacturers to continually update and develop the vehicles.

      A hybrid setup will be great for cabs in NYC, which in addition to the obvious fuel cost savings, will greatly reduce the maintenance costs on the brake & transmission components for the vehicles that'll have to endure crawl & stop traffic.

      • 4 Years Ago
      Thing is, the Ford is the only one that actually exists...
        • 4 Years Ago
        As mentioned elsewhere in the comments, the Nissan NV200 is not only a production vehicle, it is International Van of the Year and beats the Ford in EU comparison tests. It makes 33% better fuel economy and has 17% more interior room... it is a better vehicle.

        If NYC picks the Ford it will be because of politics.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Tiny wheels on NY roads worry me. They should be larger and have more rubber.
      And yes, the Ford looks dated.
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