York leads the way in flagship taxi scheme

THE UK’s first low emission taxi incentive is being launched in York.

Designed to reduce air pollution, the flagship scheme aims to increase the numbers of energy-efficient taxis and minicabs in the area by offering drivers £3,000 towards the price of a low Emission taxi and half-price taxi licensing.

Four taxi drivers have so far taken up the offer and the eco-friendly motors will be a regular sight at what is the UK’s first ever ‘green’ taxi rank, reserved purely for hybrid vehicles.

Councillor Dave Merrett, City of York Council’s cabinet member for transport, planning and sustainability, said: “We are determined to address the traffic-related air quality problems we have in York and this incentive is an innovative step forward. We need to move as quickly as possible to introduce different, less polluting vehicle technologies and taxis are key group given their frequency in the city.”

Harrogate headquartered Vantage Motor Group’s York dealership is supporting  the City of York Council and the taxi drivers involved already have purchased hybrid Prius cars from Vantage’s Toyota dealership

Darren Binge, sales manager at Vantage, said: “We are proud to be the first dealership in York and indeed the country to be involved in what is a UK first low-emission taxi scheme.”

Vantage has recently celebrated its 10th anniversary following the acquisition of four dealerships in the West Midlands, as well as developing a new site in Scarborough. The acquisitions will see annual group turnover double to £125m.

To qualify for the grant, drivers must be registered to work in York and choose a hybrid or electric car that emits under 100g/km CO2.