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GREENER EURO 6 TAXI UPGRADES: Should more be done to promote and support the option?

More can be done to understand and promote the benefits of taxi engine retrofitting technology says one retrofitting firm looking to help the industry deliver a greener fleet.

Retrofitting existing cabs to meet Euro 6 compliance standards is seen as one way to keep the number of licensed taxis high and coverage wide for passengers during a period of huge transition.

Eventually all taxis will be 100% Zero-Emission Capable (ZEC), however the industry must first recover from the devastating financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic in the short-term.

Using a fully approved retrofit conversion could help save money on new Clean Air Zone (CAZ) charges, and quickly provide a fleet less harmful to the environment which carries long-term benefits for everybody.

TaxiPoint spoke to Mark Bowden, Project Manager at Cybrand AEC Ltd, to ask what more could be done to help cabbies shift to retrofit options and what retrofits are currently available.

Should Local Authorities (LA’s) do more to support and promote the option of EURO 6 upgrade retrofitting? What could they offer or do better?

Undoubtedly. As the most cost-effective option for a driver to keep their cab on the road for a longer period without falling foul of the CAZ/ULEZ regulations we thought LA’s would be helping us get the message out as much as possible. For an industry that is on its knees since the pandemic, this is a chance for LA’s to offer the taxi trade a viable option, complete with grant-funding, which will allow them to realise some of the benefits of the economy opening up again, whilst polluting far less! The issue always been getting the end users, the drivers, aware of the options available to them. This is where LA help would be most beneficial.

Why do you think some Local Authorities have been slow to implement this technology as an option?

I think a lot of it comes down to a lack of understanding of both the technology we are talking about and offering and the process itself, whereby the kits are fully type approved and therefore comply with all UK regulations, whichever country, city or borough they are sold and fitted in.

Councils and Local Authorities don’t need to worry about approvals and accreditations, that’s been handled by the Energy Saving Trust and their CVRAS scheme.

What has been the feedback from taxi drivers who have converted?

Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Many of our customers are trying to ensure their current taxi lasts a few years longer, a good few just until their retirement. The combination of grant funding, where available, and our quality kits means this is now achievable for them. We have also had great feedback on the quality of the installs and of the equipment itself which is all stainless steel and comes with a 2-year warranty.

Which taxi vehicles can you currently upgrade to EURO 6? How much does the upgrade cost and how quickly can it be fitted?

Our current offerings cover the Euro 5 models of the following:

  • Mercedes Benz Vito/Viano

  • Ford Transit

  • Peugeot E7

  • LTi TX4

  • Mercedes Sprinter

  • VW T5

Along with several others, mainly vans.

The upgrade itself is in the region of £5,600 plus VAT depending on the vehicle and can be completed in two days at one of our fitment centres.


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