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‘Matters relating to electric taxi repairs have not been raised’ reveals Government minister

Amid rising repair costs for taxi drivers shifting to electric black cabs, the Government revealed no discussions around repair capacity have been had with either trade representatives or manufacturers.

In a recent query to the Department for Transport (DfT), Anneliese Dodds, MP and Chair of the Labour Party, raised the point regarding the current state and discussions around the repair capabilities for London Electric Vehicle Company (LEVC) black cabs and other electric taxis.

Responding to the inquiry, Guy Opperman, Minister at the DfT, clarified that while there have been ongoing discussions with LEVC and the broader industry, these primarily focused on manufacturing trends and incentives like the Plug In Taxi Grant. Interestingly, specific dialogues about the repair mechanisms for electric taxis have yet to occur.

Guy Opperman, a Minister at the Department for Transport (DfT), said: “The Department has regular engagement with LEVC and the wider industry on a range of topics, most recently including manufacturing trends and the extension to the Plug In Taxi Grant. However, matters relating to electric taxi repairs have not been raised.

“The Government recognises there will be a transitional period for the repair sector as the UK moves to zero emission road transport. Although not specifically on electric taxis, the Government funded research by Thatcham to understand the impact of the electric vehicle transition on the repair sector, which was published in 2023. The number of EV qualified technicians has risen rapidly. Data from the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) suggests there are 52,000 qualified electric vehicle technicians in the UK, which is 22% of all UK technicians. This is relative to 3.8% of all vehicles in the UK being a plug-in electric vehicle.”

Recently a prominent taxi firm debated abandoning extended black taxi extended warranties amid the soaring costs.

Paul Byron, owner of black cab rental firm HP Taxis, announced the significant change in his company's approach to handling LEVC TX taxi warranties, due to the steep increase in warranty costs and excess charges. 

This decision reflects broader financial concerns affecting the taxi industry, particularly those involving the iconic LEVC TX taxi.

In a detailed video posted on social media, Byron, collaborating with Dean Warrington, owner of Wizann London knowledge school, shared insights about the escalating costs and the implications for drivers and buyers of the LEVC TX taxi. He explained that since the start of the new year, warranty prices for the LEVC TX have surged dramatically. In 2023, a three-year warranty for 5-year-old TX models was priced around £3,600. This figure has now skyrocketed to an eye-watering £5,800, accompanied by the introduction of a £250 excess charge for warranty-related work.

The LEVC TX is known for its high repair costs, especially if issues arise with the ERAD (Electric Rear Axle Drive) or heating systems. A replacement ERAD can cost around £5,000, a significant expense for taxi fleets and individual owners.


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