Determined to own a London Taxi
September 1, 2006 6:00 PM   Subscribe

I've fallen in love with London Taxis, but I live in the US where they're almost nonexistent. Any ideas?

Last week I saw a London taxi for sale in Seattle and took it for a test drive out of curiosity. The thing was rusted to hell because it'd been sitting for two years so I didn't buy it, but the test drive hooked me, and now I'm determined to own one. The only problem is, these cabs are next to impossible to find in the US or Canada. Do any of you other MeFites know of one for sale somewhere in N. America or the UK?
posted by azuresunday to Travel & Transportation around London, England (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I don't have a link handy, but I do remember reading that a company was importing them to the US to start a taxicab service. If you could track them down, you might be able to find out how they imported theirs.

In the meantime, perhaps this would be a good place to start. Good luck!
posted by Joh at 6:09 PM on September 1, 2006

London taxis of North America

It has to be said that the trad taxi is no longer made, but these guys do distribute the London Taxi as she is now built (to modern standards, they tell us).
posted by dash_slot- at 6:14 PM on September 1, 2006

posted by Yorrick at 6:16 PM on September 1, 2006

Response by poster: Thanks for the answers! More specifically, I'd like to find one with the older body style, like the one in this picture
posted by azuresunday at 6:22 PM on September 1, 2006

posted by TedW at 6:49 PM on September 1, 2006

There are also London Taxis listed at Hemmings under the make of their various manufacturers as listed in this article.
posted by TedW at 6:56 PM on September 1, 2006

They must be available somewhere as a previous neighbor of mine had the exact one in your picture. Even had the Hack light at the top (that's what that orange light says when it's lit up).

Also, I don't know if they had it modified or if this was the reason they bought it but the back seat had LOTS of legroom. So much that the guy's wife could sit in with her folded up wheelchair in the seat well next to her. So... perhaps that's a clue. Contact some organization with connections to the disabled and see?
posted by dobbs at 8:00 PM on September 1, 2006

Oh, and I'm in Toronto, Canada.
posted by dobbs at 8:00 PM on September 1, 2006

Everytime I use Luxor Cab here in San Francisco, I always seem to get one of their London cabs.
posted by vacapinta at 8:30 PM on September 1, 2006

Looks like they got them from the link posted above by dash-slot, which nobody else seems to be noticing either :)
posted by vacapinta at 8:35 PM on September 1, 2006

I've a couple of friends who are taxi drivers, and both used to drive the FX4 (the model in your link) before changing to the TX1.

They said the main problem they had with the FX4 is that it has a low windshield. My friends are both around the 5'9 or 5'10 mark, and they said that the FX4 gave them a 'line' across their vision where the windshield ended and the roof began. After a few hours driving, this gave them headaches.

The TX1 has a deeper windshield and when it was being designed, the manufacturers talked to a lot of cabbies to find out what they didn't like about the FX4.

You can actually see in the picture in my link a FX4 model behind the TX1 and the difference in windscreen height is noticeable.

Obviously, a used taxi is going to have a very high mileage, and you might find spares or servicing expensive or hard to come by.
posted by essexjan at 2:25 AM on September 2, 2006

I saw two of these for sale in Kenton, Ohio this summer while visiting family. Both were similar to what you describe, and probably about 40 years old. One was badly rotted, but the other looked like it had only recently stopped driving, albeit in pretty shabby shape. It had recent registration, etc.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 5:13 PM on September 4, 2006

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