Your next yellow cab ride in New York City might be a little bit greener. New York City has officially approved the Tesla Model 3 for taxi duty.
As Electrek reports, this makes the Tesla Model 3 the very first electric car to be formally certified for taxi duty by the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission. With this approval, the window for electric utility vehicles—such as Nissan e-NV van—may be closing.
While Tesla's compact offering may not offer as much practicality as other small EVs offered both in the States and abroad, it has going for it several other advantages, including range and, quite frankly, the Tesla name.
The TLC has approved the Model 3 for taxi medallions purely on an unrestricted basis, meaning it does not qualify as an accessible vehicle and is not classified as an alternative-fuel vehicle, which includes all of the hybrid vehicles currently certified by the governing body.
Medallion certification puts the Model 3 in somewhat exclusive company. Fewer than 40 vehicles are currently yellow-cab certified, and a dozen of them are variants of common Toyotas—far and away the most prolific automaker on the certification list.
Puzzlingly, Nissan went to great lengths to get its NV series of vans certified for yellow cab duty, but opted not to pursue the certification of its electric e-NV variant, which remains at arm's lengths for U.S. customers.
The next most-likely candidate for similar duty would be DHL's SpeedScooter electric utility vehicles, which are now slated for introduction to the United States. DHL has not yet provided a specific timetable for stateside availability.
With urban markets being key to the proliferation of electrics, it's surprising that it took this long for any EV to be certified for yellow cab duty, and perhaps doubly so that Tesla was the first to do it.
Who do you think should be next? Who else is missing the boat? Feel free to chime in and let us know.