Turkey Day Edition: NYC Picks A Taxi

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
turkey day edition nyc picks a taxi

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!

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6 of 44 comments
  • Hank Hank on Nov 17, 2010

    The Transit Connect WILL likely be built stateside by the time NY gets around to actually doing anything this data collected (target 2012 for US built Connects).

    • See 1 previous
    • Chicago Dude Chicago Dude on Nov 17, 2010

      Chances are good that Nissan would find some spare capacity in a US factory if their design was chosen. (snark). But in all seriousness, this taxi vehicle is likely to be low-volume and low-margin. Even a tiny currency shock would force Karsan to say "It's not worth it". Big multinationals like Ford and Nissan aren't going to flinch - they have been dealing with this stuff for decades.

  • AaronH AaronH on Nov 17, 2010

    I would think that customers would pick a taxi...Oh...Americans are now too stupid and infantile to be free and need their "Dear Leaders" to do everything for them. When public school Americans start refering to the politicians as "Leaders", then you know the world is in for another Dark Age.

  • Tallnikita Tallnikita on Nov 17, 2010

    Aren't these supposed to be some hybrids? I vaguely remember that Blumberg was pushing for some high number of hybrids in NYC taxi fleet.

  • Mach1 Mach1 on Nov 18, 2010

    The Transit Connect is by far the best platform for a NYC Taxi. I have experienced a similar taxi in England (Fiat Scudo based?) and they are roomy and easy to get in and out of via the tall sliding doors. with the, They can accommodate a wheel chair and have plenty of room for luggage or packages. The TC will soon be available as a plug in battery electric which would be good for use in the urban environment.