Japan’s Nissan has won a 10-year contract to be the exclusive supplier of New York’s iconic yellow taxis. It beat Ford and the Turkish manufacturer Karsan Otomotiv.
Nissan said it expected to provide up to 26,000 vehicles over the lifetime of the contract starting in 2013.
The custom-designed cabs are based on its NV200 people carrier and will replace the 16 models from nine different manufacturers now on New York’s streets.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said: “It’s going to be the safest, most comfortable, and most convenient cab the City has ever had.”
“We started this process to leverage our taxi industry’s purchasing power to get the highest quality taxi,” he noted.
Nissan will be able to convert the NV200 to run on electric-only engines beginning in 2017.
The NV200 is the first cab to pass US government crash tests with a partition and other taxi equipment installed.
Nissan said it expects a marketing boost for the brand from television and film exposure. Yellow cabs feature in just about every feature film or TV series based in New York.