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Old 11th February 2007, 13:37   #1
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Default 25,000 more new Esteem Easycabs

15 years ago in the Nepean-Kanata suburb of Ottawa, Canada, I used to get taxi tickets from my company, Bell-Northern Research Ltd. These tickets were valid for a fixed distance (much like our pre-paid Airport cab vouchers). But you could also swipe your credit card in a machine in the taxi for cashless payment.

Now Carzonrent India (representing Hertz) has launched radio taxi services with taxi tickets, and cashless card payment facility for Delhi.

To end all speculation that the humble Esteem's days are numbered, she will now be seen across Delhi painted as a Hertz Easycab. Maruti and Hertz have signed a deal to launch at least 25,000 Esteems across India.

They have 250 Maruti Esteems called "Easycabs" fitted with GPRS tech., digital fare meters, ICICI bank credit-card swipe machines and thermal receipt printers.

These are white Esteems with yellow doors and a yellow light on the roof marked, "Radio Taxi".

Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai will get 500 cars each, and Pune and Jaipur will get 250 cabs each in the near future. Mumbai and Delhi will grow to 10,000 Easycabs each by 2010.

The cab company will also issue prepaid vouchers.

The drivers have to clear police-check, bank-check and two personal verifications.

250 more cabs will be added in Delhi by 31st Mar. 2007 and grow to 5000 cabs before Commonwealth Games 2010.

Don't I selfishly wish, they had picked the Baleno instead?

Ram
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Old 11th February 2007, 13:50   #2
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I believe Versa (if it is still in production) would have been a better option.
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Old 11th February 2007, 15:15   #3
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Well it's about time we have an honest network of cabs in Delhi since the current crop of Autos & Taxis are nothing but crooks. This should really improve the things albeit slowly I guess.

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Don't I selfishly wish, they had picked the Baleno instead?
Agreed Ram but even taking the Fleet discount into account the cost of the Baleno would be substantially higher, not to mention that the car is no longer in production whereas the Esteem still is.

Last edited by iraghava : 11th February 2007 at 15:16.
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Old 11th February 2007, 15:21   #4
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Mumbai will get 500 cars. Mumbai and Delhi will grow to 10,000 Easycabs each by 2010.
Can't comment on other cities but expect the Mumbai taxi unions to oppose this move. A taxi strike is probably being planned as I type this!
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Old 11th February 2007, 16:04   #5
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Delhi already has Radio Taxis which I found to be quite good. I tihnk theyre called MetroCab or somtihng like that. Will these cabs from Hertz charge the same as the radio cabs?.I also found a few radio taxis in Mumbai this time.
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Old 11th February 2007, 16:24   #6
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Are radio taxis called "Call taxi" in chennai??
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Old 11th February 2007, 16:26   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amit View Post
Can't comment on other cities but expect the Mumbai taxi unions to oppose this move. A taxi strike is probably being planned as I type this!

Amit, the new cabs that were recently launched in Mumbai (cant remember the service name, but the indigo's and esteems that are painted yellow/.......) have already been the subject of grief amongst the Mumbai taxi union with their union head , Mr. Q, going on record saying that they oppose the introduction of these new modern cabs.....
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Old 11th February 2007, 16:35   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satish_appasani View Post
I believe Versa (if it is still in production) would have been a better option.
Here's a thought...

Versa and Pajero wouldn't suit a lot of refined people (Europeans in particular).

A van or SUV is too blue-jeans informal and working-class to ferry an aristocrat in a tuxedo and his princess in a formal evening gown.

People can be finicky. They expect a car-based taxi (even the London cab) or limousine in which to arrive at an upper-class event.



Now you know why Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Jaguar and Daimler don't make vans and SUVs.
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Old 11th February 2007, 17:09   #9
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Ram, I doubt what your saying is true in the Indian Context. I'm talking about regular 'black and yellow' taxi's here, not rental cars.

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Here's a thought...

Versa and Pajero wouldn't suit a lot of refined people (Europeans in particular).
Compared to our current Fiats, Omni's and Amby's, the Versa certainly isnt any less refined. Don't know where the Pajero came into the picture, it would be too expensive to be a regular taxi anyway

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A van or SUV is too blue-jeans informal and working-class to ferry an aristocrat in a tuxedo and his princess in a formal evening gown.
Generally, in India, people going out in Tuxedo's and formal evening gowns would have their own chauffer driven cars to ferry them to wherever they want to be going

Quote:
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People can be finicky. They expect a car-based taxi (even the London cab) or limousine in which to arrive at an upper-class event.
Again, people going to upper class event in India usually have their own cars, mostly with a chauffer.


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Now you know why Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Jaguar and Daimler don't make vans and SUVs.
When it comes to Taxi's , I think cost of running and ease of manuevering in our crowded cities plays a more important role over the image of the car itself..

Last edited by swale84 : 11th February 2007 at 17:11.
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Old 11th February 2007, 18:40   #10
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Slowly but surely we are moving to become a developed country.
I earned my first driving license in 1975. Now I see the era of bullock carts and Premier Padminis is over.

If you read the papers, top corporate CEOs are even considering buying personal jets.
A Rs. 15-lakh car is no longer as extravagant a car anymore as once thought.
Just as a Rs. 1 crore flat is no longer as unaffordable as once thought.

People travel to our cities from the other metropolises of the world from London and New York to Tokyo and Beijing to do business with us. They routinely use rental cars and taxis and Pajeros are too plain for them.

Boeing is investing $100,000,000 in Nagpur. Our top corporates are out with their deep pockets to acquire global companies. Look at the interest shown this year by all the worlds aviation majors in exhibiting the latest aircraft at Aero India 2007.
Ten years ago, would an American combat aircraft major have invited a 69 year old Indian CEO to fly their warbird?

The era of cheap drivers is coming to a close. In our metropolises, chauffeur's annual salaries are reaching 10% the purchase price of the new car. I see more and more families that once employed drivers, now driving the cars themselves, albeit owning more cars per family.

The archaic concept of local gentry having chauffeurs to drive their cars is, to that extent, somewhat out of context, just as it is already out of context, in any world capital.

Bombay is tragically losing its significance as a centre of value-generation, relegating that status to Bangalore and Hyderabad and Chennai and Pune.

There have to be strategies to uncrowd our cities, before they dry up.
So in final analysis, I don't believe that the future will see smaller and smaller tallboys as taxis.

I fancy, the drift will slowly but surely be towards something like a Toyota Cressida/Camry and then on to a Mercedes E-klasse taxicab, as it is in any world metro.

Ram

Last edited by Ram : 11th February 2007 at 18:46.
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Old 11th February 2007, 18:45   #11
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Talking Pics/info/Games related to Mumbai Taxi

Just for info, the new taxis in Mumbai are known as Mumbai GoldCab which are run by Fulora foundation. There are around 30 of them in Mumbai running on a trial basis. Currently, the commonly observed are Maruti Esteems and Tata Indigo / Marina and Maruti Versa. But Mistubishi Lancer, Tata Indica, Honda City, Toyota Corolla etc. are also a part of the plan.

Here is a pic of the Versa Taxi....


Amul's take on the taxi related dispute in Mumbai in their famous ads....


Off topic: This is a Mumbai Taxi Parking Game. It's a timepass flash game which I just found while surfing on the net....
Indiatimes Games
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Old 11th February 2007, 19:28   #12
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None of these radio Esteems for Bangalore?
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Old 11th February 2007, 20:07   #13
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Great concept but I think its a wrong choice of car. There is barely any room in it and its a low boy (lower than avg). Maruti has selfishly offered the Esteem to keep this old warhorse in production....or maybe they just dont have any other sedan to offer in this price bracket.

Regarding sedans vs vans, keep in mind that sedans typically have a plush ride quality compared to these box vans.

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Originally Posted by amit View Post
Can't comment on other cities but expect the Mumbai taxi unions to oppose this move. A taxi strike is probably being planned as I type this!
Can anybody explain how the Govt is involved in Taxi and auto business?? I know they negotiate and set the per/km fare and limit the number of taxi licenses
If I wanted to run a fleet of 100 black and yellow (or any other color) Indigos in Mumbai and charge 10% higher than the Padminis, will I be allowed to do this?

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What is that contraption on top of the already tall car?

Last edited by Mpower : 11th February 2007 at 20:14.
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Old 11th February 2007, 20:10   #14
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Quote:
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Are radio taxis called "Call taxi" in chennai??
certainly not nitrous. this is a totally different concept aimed at a different class of people.
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Old 11th February 2007, 21:43   #15
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Quote:
What is that contraption on top of the already tall car?
Most likely a self detonator for the ugly looking thing under it
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