Ways to increase the energy efficiency of taxis
How to increase the energy efficiency in terms of using a taxi or using a car in general? In reference to the last article about efficient taxis, there are two main ways. Either you substitute the current used technology by a more efficient one, or you use the current technology in a more efficient way. The first option is linked with more or less high investments, which, however, are cost efficienty in most of the cases. In the second way, the investments are way lower, yet the barrier for the realization could be far more complex, as already mentioned in the last article.
By EU regulations, the discussions about alternative drives and the constantly rising fuel prices, the OEMs where and still are forced to increase the efficiency of their conventional cars. Therefore the substituation of older cars by new models could cause a lowered fuel consumption. Yet, it’s hard and expensive to tease out the last couple of percentage points in terms of fuel efficiency of an conventional engine. Furthermore, in most of the cases, the better efficiency is compensated by an extra weight because of additional comfort services.
Whitin city traffic, which is the most frequent field of operation for taxis, Hybrid-taxis offer a high potential for a reduced fuel consumption. The combined use of an electric and conventional engine allows an optimzed operation grade and therefore a higher efficiency. For this reason there are already a numerous taxi companies, which use hybrid taxis in their fleet. A great example is the munich taxi operator “Taxi Center Ostbahnhof”, which was already awarded a multitude of prices as a recognition of the positive ecological impact.
At these days, electric cars are the most appropriate alternative in terms of efficiency as well as emissions. In addition, the relatively low energy costs in combination with the high mileage of taxis allows a cost-effective operation of electric cars, despite of the higher investment costs. By the use of an adequate pre-analysis of the taxi operation the optimal configuration of the system (e.g. positions for charging points, required charging power, suitable electric cars respectively suitable battery capacity) can be calculated/simulated, wherefore the limited range of an electric taxi is no issue anymore.
Improved mode of operation
Chaging the habits is far more difficult, yet could have a real sustainable effect. For this reason a lot of fleet and taxi operators offer special driver trainings for their staff. Such trainings are a good methode for giving the drivers the feeling of a more efficient way of driving. Yet, in a lot of cases the transfer of those results into the everyday work life isn’t successfull, because of the missing incentive for the drivers.
For this reason G&E is currently enganged in a project for improving the energy efficiency of the taxi operation in a cheap and easy way. Just stay tuned and get more information about the methode and the effects in a couple of weeks.