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WHAT TO LOOK FOR: London taxi fleet expert warns of pitfalls when buying second-hand taxis

Updated: Sep 24, 2023

In an insightful piece featured in TAXI Newspaper, an industry trade expert columnist provided essential advice to potential buyers of second-hand taxis in London.

The columnist’s ‘Words of Warning’ emphasises the timeless importance of buyer vigilance and thorough inspections before making any taxi purchase.

The secret columnist who wishes to remain unknown to the readers, said: “I should title this piece, 'Words of Warning. These aren't new

words, in fact it’s the same old advice to anyone buying any vehicle, but they are particularly relevant if you are buying a second-hand taxi.

“So here they are, Caveat Emptor, which means, let the buyer beware. I am sure that some ancient Roman chariot driver was the bloke who coined the phrase, but it's just as relevant today as it ever was. Before you buy a cab privately, get it checked out!

“It it's a TXE and it's not currently plated in London, contact TfL and check that it is capable of being licensed as a cab in London. There are a few non-London compliant TXEs out there. If you happen to buy one, you will be stuck with an expensive ornament, because it will never be a taxi in our great metropolis.

“Equally, as with any car, run an HPI check before you part with your hard earned. Only recently, I have been asked to get involved where a driver bought a very cheap TXE, not knowing it was an insurance salvaged taxi.

“Unfortunately, yet unsurprisingly, without any paperwork relating to the damage, no engineer's report or anything that confirmed the cab's history, Tfl. have refused to plate it.

“This is the second case of this type, this year, that I am aware of and although the driver in the other case managed to get the necessary documents, engineer's report, and tests on the cab, it wasn't cheap. It was also a lot of stress and aggravation for the owner before it eventually got passed at NSL.

“Even after going through all of that, it's unlikely the owner will ever be able to sell or trade the cab, as most of the garages and dealers will always swerve this type of vehicle. Always, that's always, get it checked.”


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