Tesla Taxi

Tesla Taxi

One industry that REALLY needs EV' is the Taxi industry. Esp. New York, but all cities really. My local politician says Taxis in Toronto are getting KILLED by gas costs. A model S or X with double benches facing each other seating 6 would be amazing. At present, Toronto taxis can only take 4 people in a taxi. Giving a small number to Taxi companies, even without special seating would easily convince our taxi fleets to start the transition or EVs. Another industry that could pay for the vehicle quickly are Limos, most of which are sedans. If they had some to try , im sure both these industries would go electric. They drive enough miles to make the economics work. There is a cool guy in OSLO that runs his Model S as a delivery/shipping service and really makes use of the superchargers and the large internal volume available for "stuff". He has a channel on youtube, "Bjørn's Tesla Model S".

carlgo | 26 marzo 2014

Teslas are very expensive, they can't keep up with the production of a single model, there are constraint issues with batteries...when their are a number of giant battery factories turning out millions of cheap and more effective batteries we will see all sorts of applications.

Electric drive vehicles of every sort will be the norm in time.

grega | 26 marzo 2014

I was speaking to a taxi driver (can't remember what city, somewhere in Australia) and his miles in 12 hours matched the Model S. For this driver, he then didn't use his car for 12 hours. As such he's ALMOST a good candidate for this - though I imagine at the end of his shift he'd be getting a bit concerned at the remaining range. If a taxi used superchargers a few times a day it'd help but eventually damage the battery.

But most taxis here work 24 hours with 2 drivers alternating shifts, since the price to register as a taxi is huge. They mostly use Toyota Prius or Camry hybrids - the MPG is low, and since electricity is 4-5 times more expensive than the US (while petrol is double?) the running price differences are much reduced.

That said - it'll be the maintenance that would make an EV worthwhile. I've heard a lot about how much cheaper it'll be to keep (but no studies of actual costs yet are there?). For charging, if they could charge at the major taxi ranks (e.g.: airport) while staying in the LONG queue for passengers they'd probably become quite viable.

Brian H | 26 marzo 2014

Bjorn in Oslo is a software programmer who does the deliveries on the side, almost as a pass-time. He earns a couple hundred dollars a weekend delivering furniture and pigeons and cats and stuff.

jordanrichard | 26 marzo 2014

The other thing one needs to factor in, when using a Tesla as a strictly town/city car, such as a Taxi, is the increase in tire wear. With a 4700 lbs car riding on tires designed for lesser weight cars, they are not going to last as long.

JPPTM | 27 marzo 2014

jordanrichard--if you get the 19" wheels/tires, don't drive like a maniac, and rotate/balance/align per routine, you should easily get over 20k miles on your tires. This is well in line with most high performance sedans/tires. You can certainly find longer wearing tires but there will be compromises in handling etc. I would venture to guess that town cars/taxis don't sod much better with respect to tire wear due to the drivers/driving conditions.

church70 | 27 marzo 2014

I'm actually going to start this really soon as a part-time thing printed the paperwork today

The insurance for me is 10,000 for the first year after three years drops to 6000

I will be running the business out of Guelph,Ontario

But it will not be a taxi I have no interest in that instead it will be a limo/sedan my focus will be airport runs and Casino only from Guelph to the Toronto airport is $150 in a taxi so that's my competition

ecocabtaxi | 23 aprile 2014

We're already using a Tesla model S as a taxi. Find pics for it on Facebook. Ecocab in Longview WA

Car t man | 23 aprile 2014

Right now it is the obscene bodywork labor and parts cost that is also strongly against such use of the car. The E will likely be more appropriate.

SamO | 23 aprile 2014


I had a puncture of my 19" tire next door to the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD, I was told that the only other car running the 19" tires is the BMW X5, which weighs between 4960 - 5379.

Makes the Tesla look like a slender lady.

Red Sage ca us | 23 aprile 2014

I believe that Taxi services are often Bonded, like other contractor services. A good Bond might also be paired with an insured driver. With good, careful drivers, accidents on the road should not be an issue in California. Parking would be in either reserved Taxi spaces or in reserved EV spaces, so the cars should be mostly ding-less. The question is whether or not Tesla Motors would allow an extended mileage lease for a vehicle used in such a manner for business.

Aspen | 23 aprile 2014

There is somthing like ten tesla S taxi's in Norway.

Brian H | 23 aprile 2014


Nice article, even after mashing by Google Translate.

Mr. Peabody | 24 aprile 2014

"We're already using a Tesla model S as a taxi. Find pics for it on Facebook. Ecocab in Longview WA"

I didn't find it on Facebook, but I found the website. Says nothing about a Tesla. I'm sure it just hasn't been updated.

My personal feeling is that claiming a Chevy Volt as an event is stretching the truth a bit, though.

Mr. Peabody | 24 aprile 2014

EV not event.

ZsoZso | 24 aprile 2014

New York's Mayor wants to push for 1/3 of taxis in NYC to be electric by 2020:

The problems I see for model S to be Taxi:

1. Back seat head-room and leg-room less than typical full size sedan
2. Cost of car maybe too high for a cab driver (may not make business sense)

Model X would not have the first problem and the 7 seating capacity would be rather handy as well as the easy / convenient get-in get-out from the back due to the falcon doors.

carlgo | 24 aprile 2014

Have to think the E will come out in an SUV form, equivalent to the X3 maybe. Would make a fine taxi. I think a huge seller overall. Not sure about the station wagon mentioned, at least in the US.

In regard to the cost of bodywork on aluminum cars, that is my work background and the costs are hideous, and not the fault of the shop. I was shocked at some of my own estimates. MB, BMW and Jaguar require the use of certified shops which means the shop must buy frame machines, various aluminum welding equipment (extremely expensive) and a special aluminum welding room to prevent contamination from other stuff in a shop. This can all cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. A modern shop today would cost at least a million dollars to set up today

Not sure Tesla certifies shops yet, may simply refer people to the high-end shops already certified by others, the shops you should be going to anyway, BTW. I could tell you stories about expensive cars in bogus shops...

There are all sorts of steps to take in terms of prep, various chemical treatments and sealants. The person working on the car must be sent to a two-week class, one that is of course far away, to be certified. And there are numerous other certifications that are costly to obtain.

Manufacturers make no provision for body repairs at all, and in fact seem to go out of their way to make it hard at times. I looked at the bare Tesla floor assembly they display at showrooms and there seems to be no easy way to fix that extravagant (but safe) front frame system. I suspect that insurance companies will total these out most of the time, hoping for a high salvage bid (likely) to cut their losses.

Manufacturers could easily do a lot to make body repairs a lot more affordable and that would be a good thing for all of us who pay for car insurance, but there is no pressure to do so.

You would think insurance companies would want to hold down costs, but you would be wrong. Having also worked in that industry, my contrarian view is that insurance companies of all kinds, including health insurance, embrace rising costs as they profit from a percentage of the premium. They can raise the premiums to match the costs. Twice the costs equals twice the premiums equals twice the profit. Their only concern is to keep costs from rising too quickly to where they can't cover them fast enough.

Red Sage ca us | 24 aprile 2014

FACEBOOK: EcoCab Taxi, Longview WA & EcoCab Hawaii

I think the sheer novelty of the Model X will have people clamoring to take a ride in it as a shuttle from airports to hotels. The Taxi drivers that frequent the most lucrative routes would likely switch to Tesla even quicker than they switched to Prius from Lincoln Town Cars.

The biggest issue that might effect using electric cars as cabs is that in certain cities, the cars are almost always on duty, around the clock. There would be two or three shifts with different drivers. The car would refuel between shifts. So there isn't the 4-8 hour downtime that most regular EV owners would have overnight. Assuming charging stations were set up at or near the taxi parking spaces, the problem could be partly mitigated during slow periods between fares. It could still work in Los Angeles though, because it isn't a city that 'never sleeps'. Here, during the week, they pretty much roll up the streets at 9:00 pm, just like country farm towns.

The next issue would be in those towns where minor accidents, causing dings, scrapes, and dents, are rather common among taxis. The aluminum construction of the Tesla Model S or Model X might not be conducive to repeated repair in an economical fashion.

Brian H | 24 aprile 2014

Yabbut, it might inspire taxi drivers to try to avoid dinging other cars, instead of the reverse. A Good Thing, methinks!

Car t man | 25 aprile 2014


yes, that would indeed be a novel evolutionary step, forced by costs..

Red Sage ca us | 25 aprile 2014

Oops! Sorry... I wrote Lincoln Town Cars above, but I was actually thinking about the Ford Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis. The Model S and Model X should be able to replace them all sufficiently in taxi fleets that require hauling multiple people and their luggage with regularity. An ultra high end Tesla Model L could compete for limousine conveyance duties, perhaps.

vgarbutt | 5 maggio 2014

@red sage - A taxi or fleet car company would probably have superchargers, and maybe even a battery swapping bay, and that can keep the fleet moving.

vgarbutt | 5 maggio 2014

@red sage - A taxi or fleet car company would probably have superchargers, and maybe even a battery swapping bay, and that can keep the fleet moving.

Al1 | 24 aprile 2015

Looks like Tesla is starting to take off as a taxi. Especially limo services.

R.EV.olution.Qc | 25 aprile 2015
R.EV.olution.Qc | 25 aprile 2015

In Montreal, a promoter wants to electrify the taxi fleet:

Al1 | 25 aprile 2015

I was curious if used Teslas make a good fit for Taxi? Still Tesla, still no gas but somewhat lower price. And mileage? Taxis will pick it up in no time, even brain new ones.

Boukman | 25 aprile 2015
Brian H | 25 aprile 2015

brain new ones = brand new ones?

Brian H | 25 aprile 2015

Interesting, Drivr provides Spotify.

mailto.freeman | 24 ottobre 2015

The Proposed Model Y Should be a Tesla Taxi

Tesla’s up-coming Model III (the mid-size $35,000 sedan) might well be offered in a second body style, specifically designed to appeal to the inner-city taxi market. Styled on an updated version of the famous London cab, passengers would again be able to enter and exit with some shred of dignity. Hundreds of millions of beleaguered city dwellers worldwide would be exposed to an elegant ride in a Tesla, expanding the middle-market brand and delivering them silently and pollution free to their destination.

Now there’s an environmental statement where it’s most needed. Beijing has 60,000 licensed cabs and desperately needs twice that number, but doesn’t know how to approach the issue. Uber is opening globally in a city a day. Tesla will either follow that market with the Model III (as other mid-size electric sedans) or lead it brilliantly with a tailored product.

Taking a clue from the famous ‘London Cab,’ Tesla might elegantly update the London’s ‘walk in, walk out’ design for six adults and generous luggage capacity combined with a famously maneuverable 25 foot turning circle. Smaller motors and a 65mph top speed would significantly increase driving range—it is, after all, a city cab built on the model III platform. Inner-city charging stations would blossom.

Electric taxis will come to the world’s cities with a variety of carmakers offering their sedans as taxis. Cities will accept that as the best they can get and we, the world’s weary cab-hailers will continue to fold ourselves like origami trying to enter and exit with what’s left of that long-lost dignity.

Tesla can break that code, broaden their brand recognition, contribute to airing-out our choking cities and electrify the public conscience—all with one terrific new body style, specifically for use as a taxi. Millions of additional sales (or leases to facilitate entry-level acquisition) return to Tesla as a plus on the cash-flow side.

Now wouldn’t that be a win-win move for both Tesla and the environment?

ttsishaq | 30 gennaio 2019

curiously waiting for Teslas make a good fit for Taxi.

ttsishaq | 30 gennaio 2019

In india it can be used as she cabs for women safety