Earlier this summer we wrote about Taxelco, a Montreal-based startup which bought the second largest taxi company in Montreal (500 cars and 1,000 drivers) with the intention to transition the whole fleet to electric. The company is getting ready to launch its pilot program in November with 50 new electric cars, including a dozen Tesla Model S’s recently acquired. The project is the brainchild of investor Alexandre Taillefer, managing partner at XPND Capital. He said the company will launch its taxi service under a new brand which will aim at delivering a Uber-like user experience through an app, but with a business model closer to traditional taxi companies – meaning the drivers will be paid employees with taxi permits.
Alongside the Teslas, the company will also introduce Kia Soul EVs and Nissan LEAFs in the initial fleet of 50 taxis.
Taillefer released two previews of the company’s fleet on Twitter:
[tweet https://twitter.com/ataillefer/status/655034276086349824 align=’center’]
[tweet https://twitter.com/ataillefer/status/657203605410324480 align=’center’]
The executive will release all the details on the project during a presentation to Montreal’s Chamber of Commerce on November 18.
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That may sound like something special, but here in The Netherlands you practically trip over these Tesla cars. Yes, including taxis. And that’s just in the small city I live in, with only 460,000 residents.
How are the TESLA cars perceived there? Anything Canada can learn from Dutch experience?
Perceived? I’d say “well”. Probably due to the tax break the government is giving the owners. Not exclusively applies to Tesla, but electric cars in general.
Forgot to add, the latest software update that can make the Tesla navigate by itself is not allowed here in NL, BE, DE and likely all other European countries. While the authorities welcome the advances in technology they haven’t altered the current law: keep your hands on the wheel at all times, don’t start reading a newspaper because the car can steer fine on the highway, et cetera.
The flaws in the latest update have also been pointed out: Tesla latest software for auto pilot mode can’t see beyond the first vehicle ahead, can’t see the next exit in time, and so on.
Well, the update is allowed (in Germany at least). However, you’re supposed to be “always in control of your car”, so it’s probably not allowed to take the hands off the steering wheel. We probably need a court (or the parliament to make the wording of the law more explicit) to take a final decision…