Minicab giant snaps up low-emission rival

Europe's largest minicab firm Addison Lee has ramped up its environmental credentials with the acquisition of London-based eco-friendly car service Climate Cars.

The deal sees Climate Cars’ entire fleet of 115 hybrid cars join Addison Lee’s existing portfolio of 4,800 vehicles, which transport more than 10 million passengers a year in London.

Addison Lee’s chief executive Liam Griffin said: “This deal will boost our Add Lee Eco offering, providing more variety for our passengers but with the same best-in-class experience they expect.

“This comes in addition to the upgrades we’ve made to our App, the 4G Wi-Fi we’ve implemented into our vehicles and the new customer loyalty scheme we’ve just launched. All of which are designed to enhance the Addison Lee passenger service even further.”

This announcement following the launch of Addison Lee Eco in February, which saw an additional 350 hybrid vehicles incorporated into the Addison Lee fleet.

Mainstream adoption

Green taxi company Climate Cars, which was established in 2007, uses a fleet of Toyota Prius hybrids that run on a combination of petrol and electricity, resulting in significantly reduced emissions.

Climate Cars founder Nicko Williamson said: “We are delighted with the deal with Addison Lee. Their AddLee Eco service is in line with our original goal for Climate Cars, to push for mainstream adoption of hybrid & electric cars in the private hire sector.”

The deal comes at a time when London Mayor Boris Johnson is proactively seeking to drive down emissions in the capital, with a number of big investment and infrastructure announcements over the past year.

The world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is being developed in central London for 2020, requiring vehicles travelling through the Congestion Charge Zone to meet new emissions standards or pay a daily charge. Johnson also recently announced that an extra £25m from Government will be used to provide grants to help taxi drivers cover the cost of upgrading to a greener vehicle, in addition to £40m already committed to retire the oldest, most polluting taxis.

Luke Nicholls

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