Today on behalf of the Club, I attended the ” Future Taxi Design Story” presentation from GEELY about their new zero emission TX5;
It was very interesting to see the presentation from the design team who told us the big problem they faced was how to make a modern taxi that still looked like the old traditional taxi that was world famous?
The design team was lead by British designers Peter Horbury and David Ancona, supported by 200 strong team based in the UK.
Mr Horbury said ” We wanted to retain those aspects that make the London taxi what it is and what it stands for”.
They showed us several slides of drawings and clay models that over time got nearer and nearer to the TX5 that we were shown today.
GEELY went on to explain about the investment they have made into the taxi trade and GEELY have already earmarked another £50m for investment to make the new factory in Ansty, their UK R&D Headquarters.
The factory size is 50% bigger then planned and is now the size of four football pitches, an amazing 31,000 square meters.
In many ways, it was a bitter sweet event, we had an old Fairway next to a TX4, then the new amazing TX5 with fantastic world beating technology in every aspect of the Cab. But the downside to today was that I made my point to everyone I spoke to and it was this; without the support of Government and more importantly a Regulator who is afraid to regulate, by the time these taxis are ready for the streets of the Capital, will with have a job left to use them?