The growing popularity of on-demand taxi services like Uber and Lyft is revolutionizing the way people get around in many cities. Early data is starting to show that in the long term, they could lead to a fundamental change in the whole industry. The first steps of this transformation are already being felt on the streets of New York.
In London, cab drivers undergo a grueling testing and memorization regime known ominously as "The Knowledge." Obtaining a license to drive one of the British capital's distinctive black cabs is so difficult that students often use motor scooters to get around and learn some 320 routes on 25,000 roads, a process that takes two to four years. They then need to take a completely random oral test, just to make sure they know their way about the city.
The Dodge Viper may have been around now for over 20 years, but as far as racing achievements go, 2000 was its finest season. That's when it won the Rolex 24 at Daytona, the GTS class trophy at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and its second consecutive title in the American Le Mans Series.
The 24 Hours of Le Mans is still months away, but Audi Sport apparently can't wait to get started. It has just debuted the new livery for its 2014 R18 E-tron Quattro with a public drive through the streets of the town of Le Mans, while simultaneously announcing that it has a new, larger engine.
Sponsors come and sponsors go in Formula One, but they tend to stick around awhile at McLaren. The team ran under Marlboro title sponsorship for 22 years from 1974 to 1996, and Hugo Boss has been with the team for 33 years now since 1981. But it's the team's partnership with Mobil 1 which it will celebrate with the sinister livery pictured here.
One of the most iconic names in racing is returning to the sport's pinnacle series. Martini and its distinctive livery will be teaming with the Williams Formula One team for the 2014 season, marking its return to the sport after an all-to-brief stint with Ferrari from 2006 to 2008. Even in those three short seasons, Martini wasn't a named sponsor, occupying a small place on the Scuderia's cars.
Nissan may be loaning out its small van to General Motors for its Chicago Auto Show debut, but that doesn't mean that Chevrolet is the only one with new NV200-based wares to share. On the heels of launching its Taxi Of Tomorrow for New York City, the Japanese automaker is giving America's Second City a livery of its own.
Uber and authorities in France are heading for a bit of a fight following new laws in the country requiring that car services need to wait a minimum of 15 minutes after receiving a pickup request or reservation before they can actually pick up fares. The point of contention here, though, is that licensed cabs aren't subject to the same set of rules, which is striking some as an arbitrary ruling that favors traditional cab operations over car-sharing services.
There's a great history to purpose-built taxis. London still uses the same type of Black Cab, but while New York's iconic Checker cabs have long since disappeared – replaced by Ford Crown Vics and all manner of other vehicle – they're making a comeback in the form of the Nissan NV200.
The deaths of the Ford Crown Victoria and the Lincoln Town Car have meant overhauls of three high-profile American fleets: police, taxi and livery car. Just as police fleets are more open to considering other options and a Nissan van is the new face of the NYC taxi, livery car companies are looking at replacements for the Town Car beyond The Blue Oval. Ford, via Lincoln, has made an MKT Town Car (pictured), but an article in the Detroit News claims "it has failed to win over most of the big limo
Ford has a new livery for its racing efforts. The automaker has officially chosen an offset black and blue stripe as its family colors. The paint scheme officially debuted on the new 2013 Ford Fusion headed to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, but the automaker says we can expect to see it crop up in every corner of the company's racing program. That includes on the NASCAR Mustang, the NHRA Mustang Funny Car, Grand-Am Focus ST-R, the Rally America Fiesta, the BITD off-road F-150, the CTCC Focus and
Now that we've waved goodbye to the Lincoln Town Car, there's a big ol' hole in the automotive market for new livery vehicles – you know, the blacked-out hire cars frequently seen idling outside of airport terminals and hotels. Cadillac has announced that its XTS flagship will be offered with a factory livery package, and other American automakers like Chrysler and Lincoln have entered this luxury fleet segment as well. But it won't stop there.
The little black cab is to London what the yellow Ford Crown Victoria has been up to New York City. With the departure of Ford's Panther platform, Nissan has stepped in with its all-new NV200, which will soon be spreading like kudzu over NYC streets. It seems that London may also share the Big Apple's fate in adopting Nissan's new minivan as its taxi of choice.