Addison Lee, a London-headquartered private hire taxi and courier company, and the UK’s largest private vehicle hire firm, today announced that its entire fleet will become fully electric by 2023. Its current fleet currently stands at around 4,000 cars.

More electric taxis for London

The company says it will spend £160 million ($219 million) to switch to EVs two years ahead of all other large private hire vehicle operators in London, including Uber.

Addison Lee is partnering with Volkswagen to buy ID.4s. It will be the largest purchase of EVs by a private hire provider in the UK. 

From November, the taxi firm will put 200 Volkswagen ID.4s on London’s roads on a monthly basis.

Liam Griffin, Addison Lee’s CEO, said of charging infrastructure for their soon-to-be-huge fleet:

With only just over 300 rapid chargers in London, the charging infrastructure to support this switch isn’t yet in place. That’s why we have been busy looking for EV charging partners to provide innovative solutions to meet our drivers’ needs, and we hope to be able to share information about those soon.

Earlier this year, Addison Lee purchased London taxi fleet operator Comcab, which is made up of 650 electrified black cabs. 

Electrek’s Take

I’m thinking the VW sales person who negotiated this huge deal is in line for a very nice fruit basket.

Charging companies: This is a heck of an opportunity. Write your proposals now.

Anyone who has spent any substantial time in London knows how ubiquitous Addison Lee cars are. Heck, if I added it all up, I’ve probably spent close to two years of my own life being ferried around by Addison Lee cars late at night after working long newsroom shifts.

This is going to make a dent in the UK’s capital’s emissions. Or as Addison Lee puts it, “20,000 zero emissions journeys each day in London.”

The company was always reliable and efficient, in my book. Now, they’re going to be environmentally responsible. It’s a great announcement on Zero Emissions Day, and welcome news ahead of COP26.

Read more: London mayor commits to all-electric buses moving forward, 100% zero emissions by 2034

Photo: Volkswagen

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