Slough: First electric taxi franchise opens for business

Enabling the county’s drivers to switch to more environmentally-friendly and cost-effective vehicles is the objective of Berkshire’s first electric taxi franchise, which has opened in Slough.

Operated by Endeavour Automotive, sales and service for the London Electric Vehicle Company (LEVC) is being shared with Endeavour’s Volvo dealership on Bath Road. LEVC believes that drivers of diesel taxis could save over £100 per week in fuel alone by switching to a new generation hybrid-electric taxi, where all four wheels are electrically powered. A small petrol engine acts as a range extending generator for the batteries.

Established seven years ago, Endeavour Automotive expanded into Berkshire earlier this year with the acquisition of Volvo Slough and the company is one of three UK franchisees for LEVC’s plug-in hybrid electric taxi.

Commenting on the launch of its second LEVC outlet, John Caney, CEO, Endeavour Automotive, said: “Endeavour is a people-driven business and we’re constantly looking for new ways to help communities by offering more sustainable and cost-effective transport options. Our latest LEVC franchise in Slough provides a unique opportunity for taxi drivers across Berkshire to look at the financial and environmental merits of switching to zero emission capable taxis, which would bring long lasting benefits to the whole area over time.”

According to data from 2018 published by Public Health England, Slough residents are among the most affected by air pollution in the South East. As a result, Slough Borough Council is looking at proposals for the establishment of a Clean Air Zone (CAZ) to tackle air pollution, as part of its Low Emission Strategy, which is accelerating the uptake of cleaner vehicles and technologies.

Slough has also designated five Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) to reduce levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) which breach the national average, including junctions 5 and 6 of the M4, as well as the town centre.