A group of taxi owners says the city’s plan of having just one taxi design is risky in case something happens to the company that could interrupt the supply of vehicles or parts.
An influential group of taxi-fleet owners is pushing back against the city’s “Taxi of Tomorrow” plan of having just one type of yellow cab in the Big Apple.
Relying on a sole manufacturer could lead to disruptions if the company fails to provide a steady flow of vehicles and parts because of money trouble or other difficulties, fleet owners say.
“I think it’s too risky,” said Ron Sherman, president of the Metropolitan Taxicab Board of Trade, representing 31 fleets with about 3,500 yellow cabs combined.
Taxi and Limousine Commission Chairman David Yassky said he believes such fears are unfounded because the city could structure a deal with a manufacturer for all contingencies.
“The Taxi of Tomorrow” is the city’s quest for a new “iconic” cab design. Starting in 2013 or 2014, cab owners will start replacing their cabs with the winning model, officials have said. At least four companies have submitted bids: Ford, Nissan, General Motors and Karsan, a Turkish company.
There are currently 16 different types of vehicles approved as cabs by the TLC. The most dominant by far is the roomy Ford Crown Victoria, which Ford has decided to discontinue producing.