The new TX4 is so named as a tribute to LTI (London Taxis International) first purpose built Hackney Carriage, the FX4, launched in 1959, and also the fact that the new vehicle has a Euro IV compliant 2.5-litre turbodiesel engine. The new TX4 range of taxis replace the TXII models introduced in 2002.
The new TX4 is an evolution of past generations of LTIs iconic London style black cabs gained over almost 60 years of experience.
The new TX4 has an efficient Euro IV compliant diesel engine from Italian VM Motori, new transmissions, the addition of anti-lock braking, a smooth and more comfortable ride, improved user friendly interior specification, equipment and facilities for the able and disabled, all complimented by a redesigned, stylish exterior which retains the iconic British built taxi appearance. Of course, it still has the famous 25 feet turning circle required by the Public Carriage Office.
The TX4 has an entirely redesigned front end that hints back at a bygone era – retro styling with a modern touch. At the front are a totally new bonnet and a stylish new mesh radiator grille. The rear of the vehicle has also been updated with new light clusters, a high rear brake light and improved parcel shelf and plinth.
Just as its predecessors, the new TX4 is distinctively styled, it cannot be mistaken by users as anything other than a purpose built taxi and it cannot be confused with mass produced Private Hire Vehicles. "The new vehicle has a wealth of advancements, all tried and tested, and then tested again, making it the best and most advanced taxi in the world."
Peter Shillcock, Managing Director of LTI Vehicles said today, "We have invested three years of development and over £5 million in bringing the TX4 to market. We are committed to continually improving our taxis and the development of the TX4 has undergone more component and road testing than anything we have ever built. Over one million kilometres of testing, equivalent to 30 times around the world, has taken place. This includes 5,000 kilometres of chassis and suspension durability testing over Pave cobbled road surfaces. The TX4 has been tested in real-life extreme hot and cold climates and simulated conditions using the wind tunnel at MIRA."
Among the features of the cabin are individual head restraints for every passenger, a child harness and loads of lighting. The passenger compartment controls are now positioned on the doors so they are within reach of all passengers. With wide opening doors, a low sill height and a step if needed, the TX4 is easy to get in and out of. The wide swing doors also help those with limited mobility, as does the intermediate step and swivel seat.
The passenger compartment is spacious and designed to accommodate wheelchair users easily. Once in place, the wheelchair and passenger are secured using special harnesses and extendable seat belts.
To protect the driver from external attacks, the vehicle has a tough Piexiglas Resist 65 high-resistant screen between the driver’s compartment and the passenger cabin.
The new TX4 is available with four levels of specification; Driver, Bronze, Silver and Gold with prices starting at £26,995 (£2,000 price increase over the outgoing models).
LTI annually produce nearly 3,000 purpose built taxis at their Coventry manufacturing facility.
About LTI Vehicles
1948 LTI FX3
The British built Hackney Carriage, or London style taxi, manufactured by LTI Vehicles from Coventry is the most recognisable passenger car in the world, there is no other vehicle like this iconic taxi. It is designed and built to meet the rigorous demands and regulations set by the UK’s Public Carriage Office for purpose built taxis.
It is not unusual for a Hackney Carriage to cover over 1,000,000 miles in a 10 year period so in addition to the need for them to be distinctive and easily recognised as a Hackney Carriage, they have to be durable, reliable and fit for purpose. A design and build process of evolution rather than revolution has given us the London style taxi known all around the world today.
Carbodies Ltd, which became London Taxis International in 1984, was established in 1919 in Coventry as a coach-building operation. The company grew and moved to the current LTI Vehicles site in Holyhead Road in Coventry in 1928.
1989 LTI Fairway
In 1948 the company built its first taxi, the FX3, based on an Austin vehicle and since that time over 100,000 taxis have been built.
In 1959 the company produced its own first purpose built taxi – the FX4. In 1973 Carbodies was bought by Manganese Bronze Holdings plc and in 1984 they formed London Taxis International also known as LTI Vehicles, to manufacture and sell taxis.
Today, LTI Vehicles is the largest remaining British owned passenger car manufacturer in the UK, employing over 400 people.
The outgoing model – the TXII – is exported to 35 different countries around the world including USA, China, Spain, Pakistan, South Africa and Japan.
LTI London Taxis models history:
- FX series
- FX3 in 1948
- FX4 in 1958
- Fairway series
- Fairway in 1989
- Fairway Driver in 1992
- Fairway Driver-Plus in 1993
- Fairway 95 in 1994
- TX series
- TX1 in 1997
- TXII in 2002 – 2006
Additional information can be found on www.lti.co.uk.
(Source: LTI Vehicles)