Nissan unveils taxi convenient for disabled persons

Nissan NV200Hong Kong/Tokyo, Dec 26 : Taxis are convenient daily transportation for the citizens in Hong Kong.

About 18,000 taxis operating in the city are sedan type vehicles having limited trunk space.

This makes it difficult for wheelchair users.

Nissan Motor recently unveiled a new generation taxi for Hong Kong.

It offers an innovative functional cabin that unites comfort with hospitality.

Shiro Nagai, a senior manager (Communications) with Nissan Global Co., Ltd., said, "This NV200 will make an important contribution to Hong Kong society, and providing mobility to all people in Hong Kong."

The new taxi offers barrier-free access to users realized by a universal design layout.

Wheelchair users may benefit from the new concept who can easily roll on and off the taxi through the back door using an attached slope.

The new taxi is based on the Nissan NV200, a multi-purpose commercial vehicle, that is sold throughout the world.

More than 750 units are already operating in Japan, recently launched in New York City and EV model in Barcelona as the next-generation taxi.

The NV200 taxi is powered by both gasoline and LPG.

This bi-fuel system is common in Europe and comes to Hong Kong for the first time.

The new bi-fuel system is economical and reduces approximately 80 percent of NOx from the emission compared to conventional mono-fuel LPG models.

The new taxi launch was celebrated with several groups, including Direction Association for the Handicapped, which provides assistance to the elderly and rehabilitation services for people with disabilities and chronic illnesses.

Lee Yuen Tai, the chairman of the Direction Association for the Handicapped, said, "This barrier-free new design of taxi offers a lot of more choices to the wheel chair persons to get to the places that they want to go without difficulty."

Yim Chor Pik, vice-chairman of the Direction Association for the Handicapped, said, "Until now, it was very difficult to ride the taxi, This universal designed taxi saves me a lot, it makes very easily to ride the taxi without removing off the wheelchair."

Nagai said, "Nissan would like to offer a new value for the daily transportation to the rapidly aging Hong Kong society, by utilizing our experiences gained in Japan, and this new universal design taxi approved by our customer."

Approximately 15 percent of people in Hong Kong are over 65-years-old of their age and the number is expected to be doubled by 2040.

Nissan taxis will be a boon for aging population in Hong Kong.

Also, to make the driving safe this small device is spreading all over Japan.

The service is to send a variety of driving data such as speed, location, time and fuel from the small device in the car.

Masashi Takemura, the general manager of the Risk Consulting Department at Orix Auto Corporation, said, "The service is called "Telematics". It's invented word, combination of "telecommunication" and "informatics."

User can easily check the statistical data on telematics web site.

For example, you can see the data of "abrupt acceleration" for a month. Those pins are the locations.

By getting close up to the pin, one can check the car number, driver's name and time.

One can also see other data such as long drive, over speed, idling time, fuel consumption and so on.

The data is not only of each driver, but also company-wide.

This graph shows the change of the number of abrupt slowdown in one company for three years.

Takemura further stated, "When the company use cars on business they necessarily have to take corporate social responsibility (CSR). They need to visualize how their cars are used for the compliance of driving rules, eco- friendly driving and above all for safety driving. Telematics service started to meet those needs."

The service used by about 1,500 companies including big nationwide companies.

Yuuji Iida, Director, General Affairs Department, KAO customer marketing Co., Ltd., said, "The number of "over speeding" on expressway decreased to almost zero. Sudden braking decreased to 1/3. Abrupt acceleration decreased 80 per cent. Which means fuel efficiency is improved."

The device also plays a role of communication tool.

Manager who check the data and employee (Each driver) have more communication and corporate culture improved. (ANI)

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