BLOG: Investing in electric - support for taxi drivers in Oxford

Published: Wednesday, 18th August 2021

With the Zero Emission Zone Pilot due to start later this year, a number of support options are to help the taxi trade to transition to electric vehicles, the support includes:

Support for all taxi drivers

Plug-in Taxi Grants scheme

The Government’s Plug-in Taxi Grant scheme offers a discount on the price of eligible taxis of up to a maximum of £7,500 or £3,000 – depending on the vehicle’s range, emissions and design.

This grant scheme is available for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles.

The grant is available to all taxi drivers and businesses buying or leasing a new purpose-built taxi at the point of purchase from the dealership or manufacturer.
Eligible taxis are allocated into one of two categories based on their carbon emissions and zero-emission range:

  • Category 1 PiTG (up to £7,500) - a zero emission range of 70 miles or more and emissions less than 50g CO2/km.
  • Category 2 PiTG (up to £3,000) –a zero emission range of 10-69 miles and emissions of less than 50gCO2/km

Find out more about the grant scheme here.

Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme

The Government’s Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) provides grant funding of up to 75% towards the cost of installing one electric vehicle chargepoint per vehicle at homes across the UK.

This funding opportunity is also available to electric taxi drivers, with the TX and Nissan Dynamo both eligible vehicles under the scheme.

Find out more about the grant scheme here.

Rapid EV charging bays for taxis

We are working with EB Charging Ltd (Electric Blue) and Oxfordshire County Council to install six new rapid chargers and 12 charging bays for use by electric taxis, both private hire (PH) and hackney carriages (HC), across the city.

The charging point locations will ensure that e-taxi drivers are never more than five miles away from a charging solution, and will be easily accessible from the major artery roads into the city.

The locations of rapid EV charging points for electric taxis are:

  • Manzil Way (2 chargers, 4 bays)
  • Keble Road (1 charger, 2 bays)
  • Blackbird Leys Leisure Centre (1 charger, 2 bays - To go live in Autumn 2021)
  • Headington Car Park (1 charger, 2 bays - To go live in Autumn 2021)
  • Old Greyfriars Street (1 charger, 2 bays -  To go live in Autumn 2021)

Manzil Way, Keble Road, Blackbird Leys and Headington will all feature temporarily a bay that can be used by the general public. Once there are more electric taxis in the fleet this public use will be withdrawn to make the sites e-taxi use only (both HC and PH).

Old Greyfriars Street will not feature a public bay, and remain e-taxi only at all times. 

A further two chargers will be installed in late autumn. Once live, the eight chargers will be able to deliver close to 800 half hour charging sessions a day.

Support available to Hackney Carriage drivers

Try Before You Buy offer

Since 2019, the Council has been running its Try You Before You Buy scheme for Hackney Carriage vehicle drivers.

Through scheme provides support to the first 10 adopters of zero emission capable Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles that are licensed by the City Council.

The scheme allows taxi drivers to test out two electric taxis - an all-electric Nissan Dynamo and an LEVC TX (London Electric Vehicle Company) - in a real world environment for a two or four-week period.

In addition, vehicle licence fees and certificate of compliance test fees incurred up to and ending on 31st March 2024 will be waived as part of the scheme.

The offer, which was previously £150 per week and is currently free - we encourage drivers to take part in the trial while the cost remains subsidised.

To access this support please register your interest, email [email protected]

£5000 support grant

A £5000 grant is available for Oxford city licenced Hackney Carriage drivers to transition to an electric vehicle.

The funding, combined with a contribution grant from LEVC, and the Government Plug-in-Grant, means that taxi drivers can save around £12,200 (22%) when purchasing a new electric Hackney Carriage vehicle.

To be eligible for the grant, proof of purchase is required and the vehicle will need to be licensed with Oxford City Council.

To find out more, email [email protected]

Clipper Automotive

Clipper Automotive is able to upgrade diesel TX4 black cabs to 100% fully electric vehicles.

ODS approved service dealer

ODS is an authorised service dealer for purpose built electric taxi - the TX. ODS is able to service TX black cabs, carry out warranty work, supply parts, respond to any breakdowns and undertake body repairs.

Find out more about ODS’ services here.