Toyota expects its LPG-powered cab will be around for decades.Toyota will travel to the biennial Tokyo Auto Show to introduce a taxi developed specifically for the Japanese market. The model is appropriately called JPN Taxi.The JPN Taxi embodies Japanese hospitality, according to Toyota. It takes the form of a tall, boxy vehicle that is instantly recognizable as a cab. Large sliding doors on both sides and a low, flat floor facilitate the task of entering the cabin for passengers in a wheelchair, while designers ensured the meter is placed in a spot where it's easy for customers to keep track of their fare.
The front-end styling is a tribute to the Comfort, a four-door sedan widely used as a taxi throughout Japan. Toyota explains it asked its designers to pen lines that will transcend trends and look fresh for decades to come.
Upscale trim levels get premium features like rear heated seats, and rear air vents connected from the main HVAC system. Sound-proof glass and a generous amount of sound-deadening material come standard regardless of which trim level is chosen.
Technical details are vague at best. All we know at this point is that power comes from a brand-new hybrid system built around a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine that runs on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Every cab comes with six airbags, and Toyota's Safety Sense C suite of electronic driving aids.
As of writing, it sounds like the JPN Taxi will exclusively be sold on the local market. The London Taxi Company has announced plans to export the comparable TX5 to a number of global markets, which could convince Toyota to go on the offensive.