From 1 January 2018, all new black cabs will have to be battery-powered electric models by law as part of TfL’s effort to reduce toxic pollution from diesel engines. Transport for London is spending £18m on upgrading the capital’s power grids to charge the first generation of battery-powered black cabs.
The funds will pay for network reinforcements to enable British Gas owner Centrica and other energy companies to install 300 rapid electric-car charging stations by 2020. The charging point can top up a car’s battery within minutes, rather than the hours it takes for the city’s thousands of conventional electric vehicles.
An initial 75 fast chargers are due to be operational by the end of the year. While some of the sites will be exclusively for black cabs, the network will also be open to the increasing number of owners of Teslas, Nissan Leafs and electric BMWs in London.