he city of New York wants to create a new generation of its iconic yellow taxi cab, and has shortlisted designs by three automakers that will vie for the 10-year contract. Ford, Nissan, and Turkish company Karsan have all designed minivan-style cabs, each incorporating features that taxi-users value. The Karsan model would boast a glass roof and WiFi capabilities; the Nissan could potentially be electric; travelers in the Ford model would be able to plug their iPods into the car's stereo system. Which car should bag the "Taxi for Tomorrow" contract? (See the three designs)
Karsan: The Turkish design "stuck out for us," says Dan Amira at New York. Not only does it have wheelchair access, but it also has a "distinctive rear-facing seat" allowing four passengers to sit in the cab's rear. But while this could spare one passenger "lonely exile in the front seat," that person could "throw up on everybody" as a result, especially if he or she were drunk.
"This could be New York's new taxi"
Nissan: The Japanese firm's entry has "generous legroom," says Dave Pinter at PSFK.com, and the capacity for "electric technology" also works in its favor. The only downside is its "traditional large lift gate" at the rear: Split doors would be "smaller, lighter and easier to operate."
"Finalists revealed for the new NYC taxi"
Ford: Although Ford is nominally "representing America" in this three-way battle, says Jaya Saxena at Gothamist, the vehicle itself is actually "made in Turkey." As for the humdrum design, well, it "kind of looks like we're going to be carpooling to the airport." At the risk of being labeled a "turncoat," I have to admit I'm "enjoying the Karsan design — so roomy, so open!"
"Ford represents America in Taxi of Tomorrow competition"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Who are the real gay marriage bigots?
- Sorry Belle Knox, porn still oppresses women
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- Religious liberty should be a liberal value, too
- Watch The Daily Show mock Fox News' confused man-crush on Vladimir Putin
- Why is American internet so slow?
- Why states should stop limiting the alcohol content in your beer
- Don't worry: World War III will almost certainly never happen
- 10 things you need to know today: March 8, 2014
Subscribe to the Week