First fleet of electric minicabs starts work on London’s streets

Tim Wallace
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A FLEET of electric minicabs will start operating in London today, two months after the capital got its first fully electric buses.

Chinese firm BYD manufactured the 20 vehicles which have been bought by chauffer service Thriev.

The new cars ­– the e6 model – come four years ahead of mayor Boris Johnson’s deadline for emission-free vehicles.

From 1 January 2018 Johnson wants all new minicabs in London to create no emissions, the mayor said late last year.

The incoming rules are part of a wider range of green initiatives implemented by the mayor.

As part of the roll-out of e6 cars in London, Thriev will be installing charging points at its Edgware Road facility.

The fleet of 20 is expected to be joined by another group of 50 vehicles.

Minicab firm Green Tomato Cars signed a memorandum of understanding with BYD in October 2013 to take the larger order, expected to come in the second quarter of this year.

In December the first all-electric buses came to London’s streets as two of the transports started on two different routes in the capital.

Manufacturer BYD is 9.9 per cent owned by investment titan Warren Buffett. The company is a major rechargeable battery producer, also operating in mobile phones and keypads.