Pretty neat idea, have people tweet for a taxi and get a cheap ride. I see one issue with this idea, you're preaching to taxi-riders who very often cab it because they don't have a car and do not intend to get one. London isn't exactly known as a city where it's easy to keep a car, forget one that needs charging, which then assumes you have a home of the sort where there's a garage.
Cheap taxi rides though, yeay!
London recently witnessed a taxi rank with a difference. Celebrating the fact that the Nissan LEAF is six times cheaper to run than petrol, ten 100% electric cars ferried people around London for a few pence. Scores of delighted passengers – both Londoners and visitors to the capital – were treated to incredibly cheap ‘taxi’ rides in the zero-emission Nissan LEAF over a June weekend.
Journey requests came in for destinations all over London, from Covent Garden to Croydon, with professional taxi drivers from Battersea-based Climate Cars driving the 100% electric fleet. Successful tweeters picked up their ride at a special ‘taxi rank’ at the Truman Brewery, near Liverpool St Station.
To qualify for a ride, passengers were required to Tweet their destination, followed by the hashtag #6XCHEAPER. Nissan then responded to the individual tweets with the journey cost in both electric and petrol.
Digital messaging is an integral part of Nissan’s ambitious campaign, ‘The Big Turn On’, which is spreading the EV message via social media channels aimed to get one million consumers switched on to electric driving in just 100 days. The 1 million ‘turn ons’ target was achieved on 21 June, 18 days ahead of the original target.
As each mile in a Nissan LEAF costs only 1.75p* in electricity consumed, the journeys were often less than 10p. A trip to Oxford for instance – at approximately 60 miles, well within the car’s range – would cost the Nissan LEAF driver less than £1 in fuel, but would cost the driver of a conventional car almost £6.
In partnership with Nissan, AKQA concepted the idea and delivered the project. The agency has developed a wrap up film that can be viewed here.
The activity is also being used to gather consumer feedback on a potential taxi of the future, with Nissan already confirmed as the exclusive supplier of the next New York yellow cab.
London isn’t the only city in Europe to benefit from cheap taxi trips courtesy Nissan: a fleet of Nissan LEAF EVs was offering rides in Amsterdam last weekend.
“Every passenger got out of the Nissan LEAF taxi with a smile on their face. They loved the near silence and general refinement of the car… and were blown away when they discovered how cheap it is to fuel. Using off-peak electricity – such as when recharging overnight – means it really costs just a few pence in fuel to go anywhere by Nissan LEAF,” said Jim Wright, Managing Director of Nissan GB.
Duan Evans, Executive Creative Director at AKQA, commented: “The world’s cheapest taxi rank truly reflects Nissan’s position as leader of the EV market and shows how economic the Nissan LEAF is. The work also signifies the beginnings of research for the taxi of the future.”
ASTERIX *Based on a national average of British Gas Economy 7 rates as at 12 January 2012, assuming 7 hours of charging overnight at the night rate and 1 hour in the daytime charged at the Tier-2 daytime rate. A 109 mile charge range, 95% charging efficiency. You know, that's still pretty darn good and since even the car itself has bits made by recycled bottles, it's all good.