UK Boosts Wireless BEV Taxi Charging

The UK’s government is trying to break the stalemate over BEV taxi cabs by pushing plans for wireless charging.

Many Black Cab drivers in London have reported issues over earning time lost charging BEV cabs against drivers using the vehicles in ICE mode and not benefiting from savings on fuel. Now a government backed six-month of wireless charging solutions is set to begin in the north midland’s city of Nottingham.

Here the government has put $4.1M towards five wireless charging plates or modules installed at the taxi rank outside the city’s main rail station. This trial will feature 10 BEV Black Cab LEVC TX and Nissan ENV200 electric cabs fitted with wireless charging technology in the expectation that a successful outcome will see the technology rolled out further in the city and to other cities.

The vehicles are owned by the city council and supplied rent-free to drivers selected for the trial. No date has yet been set for the scheme to begin but spokespeople for the council have said it would be later this year.

Meanwhile a further $4.4M of government money has been allocated to a British EV propulsion technology company Sprint Power to develop wireless charging modules for taxis. It has been tasked with demonstrating the suitability of wireless charging technology in a fleet of the UK’s most popular electrified taxis, including the iconic Black Cab LEVC TX.

Founder and CEO of Sprint Power, Richie Frost, said: “Many taxi operators, businesses and councils are keen to make the transition to electric vehicles. Our view is that wireless charging will significantly ease this transition. As part of the project, we will work through the technical and commercial challenges, creating a framework to demonstrate the viability of inductive charging as a true long-term solution to a wireless, zero-emission future.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_



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