It’s definitive: The fabled New York Yellow Cab will either be replaced by a minivan made in Japan, or by a something made in Turkey. After a long “Taxi of Tomorrow” competition, the NYC’s Taxi has now announced the final contestants:
- Nissan’s entry is based on Nissan’s NV200 model, made in Japan.
- Then there is the futuristic V1 by Turkish automaker Karsan Otomotiv. It has a wheelchair ramp, and a glass ceiling for admirers of the Manhattan Skyline.
- Lastly, there is the bland entry by Ford, based on their Transit Connect ute.
Which one would the “Buy American” crowd prefer? The answer is easy: None. The Ford Transit Connect is also made in Turkey, made by the Otosan joint venture in Izmit.
Both Turkish entries are somehow connected. Karsan was once ruled by the Turkish Koç Group before it relinquished control to the Kıraça Group. Koç didn’t exit the business, and is now Ford’s partner in the Otosan joint venture.
Died-in-the-wool Manhattanites will remain characteristically aloof, even if their future cabs come from Turkey, which has 2:1 odds. According to Manhattan lore, taxi drivers all come from Turkey anyway, and points further east.
According to Reuters, the winner will be announced in early 2011, new vehicles are expected no later than 2014. The winning model will replace the ambling Crown Vics and Ford Escape hybrids. Gobble-gobble!