Hybrid Taxi-ing It Around More Eco-Friendly?

I spent this weekend in Paris as I often do (some would say I’m lucky) and I noticed something new – hybrid taxis. Now, ordinarily, my disdain for the “hybrid solution” is pretty well documented but if mass use of these cars could be useful anywhere it could be the centres of cities.toyota prius

Let’s face it, for all its charm and romantic-connotations, Paris is a pretty filthy city. Not just in terms of general dirt but pollution too. There’s no congestion-zone charge there and the traffic around the centre is usually packed. It made a pleasant change to see the clean-looking Toyota Prius (albeit one with loud livery) moving through traffic. Plus, if governments are as serious in moving green as they pay lip-service too then I’m sure some sort of incentive or funding scheme can be set up. Come on, if France in all their nuclear-reliance can make this a reality (and there may well be others I’m not aware of) this could be done elsewhere. 

The same could easily be said for other cities across the world, be it London, New York or…. Delhi. In larger, capital cities, there’s a huge amount of taxis on the road and if public transport could shift toward hybrid vehicles it could be of huge benefit. 

 Surely this is better than individuals using hybrids? From an objective point of view, far too many people are unlikely to even consider buying a hybrid. Yes, there’s some that do and their voices are loud – but there’s not enough structure in place (certainly not here in the UK) in terms of places to top up and the stigma attached to them is pretty powerful. Not to mention that nobodies really created one that looks halfway decent. 

However, from a passenger point of view it doesn’t really matter if you’re arriving at your destination in the back of a Prius or the back of an Audi. All that really governs it is the price of your transit and, if they’re as good on the juice as advertised, hybrid cars should make for cheaper taxis…

if more taxi companies shifted to hybrid vehicles (whether it be Insight or Prius it doesn’t really matter) is it likely to have more of an impact on inner city pollution than congestion-zone charges or the odd celebrity smug-fest promoting the virtues of going green?

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