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May 30, 2007

New York City to Shift Taxi Fleet to Hybrids by 2012

Closeup photo of the side of a vehicle painted taxicab yellow and bearing a taxi fare chart and a hybrid badge.

Still a rare sight on the streets of New York City, hybrid taxis will be the only option within five years.
Credit: Ford Motor Company

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced on May 22nd that the city's fleet of 13,000 taxicabs will shift entirely to hybrid vehicles by 2012. The New York Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) will phase in new emissions and mileage standards over the next four years that will force a shift to hybrid vehicles. According to the mayor, the shift will reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from the city's taxicab and for-hire vehicle fleet by 50 percent within the next decade. It will also benefit the cabbies, cutting fuel costs by $10,000 per year for the average taxicab.

The TLC first approved eight hybrid models for use in the city back in October 2005, but there are currently only 375 hybrid vehicles in the city's fleet. According to Ford Motor Company, 288 of those vehicles are Ford Escape Hybrids. See the press releases from Mayor Bloomberg and Ford.