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Fuel-Cell Hybrid Taxi Unveiled in London

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A Fuel-Cell Hybrid prototype of the iconic black cab has been unveiled on Monday at London's City Hall.

The Fuel-Cell Hybrid London taxi is powered by a hydrogen fuel-cell system hybridized with lithium polymer batteries; allowing the vehicle to operate for a full day without the need for refuelling.

Capable of achieving a top speed of over 80 mph, it has a range of more than 250 miles on a full tank of hydrogen, refuels in about 5 minutes and produces no emissions other than water vapour.

The vehicle, which is the result of the collaboration between Intelligent Energy, Lotus Engineering, LTI Vehicles and TRW Conekt, is the first step in a plan to turn
London’s taxis into a zero emissions vehicles by 2020. A fleet of hydrogen fuel-cell powered black cabs will be on London's roads by 2012.

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For the Fuel-Cell Black Cab, Lotus Engineering has packaged the full propulsion system including the fuel cell engine and has designed control systems to optimise performance of both the fuel cells and electric drive systems. TRW Conekt led the safety analysis program, including braking and steering systems, and LTI has provided donor vehicles to assist with the structural modifications to the chassis of the taxis.
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London’s Deputy Mayor for Policing and Chair of the London Hydrogen Partnership, Kit Malthouse, who unveiled the zero emissions fuel cell hybrid taxi at London’s City Hall, said, "The black cab is a much loved London icon, but it is also a significant source of pollution especially in the centre of the city. This prototype Fuel Cell Black Cab, which emits only water from its tailpipe, is an exciting glimpse of how hydrogen technology could soon play a vital role in cleaning up air quality for urban dwellers.”

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