The London Cab Drivers Club ask’s for LTPH to phase out Vitos and Vianos from the Private Hire sector as the look like London Taxis !
Can the public really tell the difference between the Vito Taxi and the Vito or Viano that’s licensed as a Private Hire Vehicle from the side ?
We have been told by they those in authority in (TFL) that their legal team have looked at the legislation and it does not apply because the taxi vito as a For Hire light on the top and a plate on the back.
When asked if I took my plate off the back of my TX II and the light off the top would you then licence it as a Private Hire Vehicle the answer was no because it’s a taxi,well sorry I think you just made us right THANKS.
Seems the clubs questionnaire is still making waves the following article was taken from the Sept issue of Private Hire & Courier.
PHC hopes the a lack of response from Transport Of London (TFL) about possible restrictions on vehicles used by private hire drivers is simply a delay in communication and not a stalling tactic because of bad news it wants to leave to the last minute. The magazine sent an email to TfL on August 16 requesting that it confirm or deny a rumour that taxi drivers are trying to ʻpersuade ʼ the regulator to stop the private hire trade using Mercedes Viano or similar lookalike vehicles. But at the time of going to press, no such reply had been received.
There may well be an innocent reason for the lack of response, as emails can go astray for many reasons, but the London private hire trade needs to to know if TfL is thinking of stopping drivers using some MPV-style vehicles.
The issue first came to light last month when the London Cab Drivers Club sent out an email questionnaire to trade-related companies.
One question in particular appeared to want support for a point of view that would lead to TfL banning private hire from using vehicles that were also used by the London taxi trade – eg: the Mercedes Viano. This would be an outrage and a complete restraint of trade.
The Viano is popular with the black cabs but that is not a reason to stop private hire drivers using them, especially as they were licensed for the private hire industry first. PHC must stress that all of this is just a rumour but it is already starting to spook private hire drivers in the industry.
Les rang PHC on his way to buy a new Viano and was worried that his vehicle might be banned at some point in the future. “The Viano is the first vehicle on my list but if this all goes pear-shaped then Iʼm only left with the VW Caravelle. “Itʼs a bit of a con though, as private hire were using the vehicle long before they had even thought of doing a taxi version.”
PHC will let you know as soon as TfL replies. Hopefully it will see sense and refuse to bow to black cab pressure to stop the trade using Vianos or any other MPV-style vehicles