New York's Taxi of Tomorrow was revealed in production form today, although you'll likely have to wait until next year to get a ride in it if your last name isn't Bloomberg. This 2014 Nissan NV200 doesn't have the regal name like a Crown Victoria, or the iconic style of a Checker, but it has airbags. Oh so many airbags.
As you'll remember, the Nissan NV was not our favorite pick to replace the loyal Ford. It was our last. We preferred the Turkish Karzan or the American-but-also-actually-Turkish-built Ford Connect. Instead, this front-wheel-drive minivan will do the job of shuffling 600,000 people daily from place-to-place. It's not exciting, but it's what you get.
Starting in late 2013, Nissans will slowly replace the Ford Crown Victorias and hodgepodge of hybrid Ford Escapes and other assorted vehicles bought by taxi firms to terrorize tourists and transport weary bespectacled Brooklynites from their PBR-fueled hookups. Other people use cabs, I'm sure.
Nissan touts the sliding doors, more efficient 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, and driver-and-passenger intercoms. Other upgrades include a USB/12-volt charging center for passengers needing to power-up their iPhones and laptops between stops.
The sliding doors are a nice safety touch and the reason is obvious to anyone who has seen a bike-messenger knocked out by a lady trying to get out of the back of Crown Victoria.
There are also airbags everywhere and we're curious about the g-forces and speed necessary to trigger said devices because we could see some people freaking out if a curtain airbag exploded next to their face.
Expect to be puking in one after a long night of karaoke by 2014.