FAQ New

Frequently Asked Questions

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New technology can be intimidating; the fear of the unknown and the sheer volume of misinformation propagated over social media and the wider internet can lead to some pretty extreme beliefs. We put some of the most common questions to our panel of experts to set the record straight.

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TX

Affordability

1. Is it true I can save up to £110 per week by switching to the new electric taxi?

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Yes! We’ve estimated that professional taxi drivers in London can typically save around £110 a week by upgrading to the new TX. But how have we worked out this seemingly far-fetched figure that could save you up to £24,155 over five years.

Let’s say you drive 120 miles per day, five days a week. And let’s also say you’ve found an especially good deal at the pumps and you’re paying 117.7p per litre of diesel. Based on our previous model, the TX4 LE Euro 6, which delivered official fuel economy of 33 mpg (though this tended to be closer to 23mpg in real-world conditions), you can expect a weekly fuel bill of £139.

With the new TX, you’ll be able to recharge the battery overnight and leave fully charged each morning. At the national average electricity price of 12p per kWh, this would cost you about £13.95 per week. And if you’re on an economy 7 tariff, that cost could be even lower.

We’ve also assumed, as is the case for most drivers of electric vehicles, you’ll take advantage of the charging infrastructure whilst you’re out and about, topping up the battery for about 20 minutes each day. If you visit a ‘Fast’ charging point, you can expect an average cost of about 21p per kWh, and you’ll be able to replenish roughly 70% of the battery in that time. Fuel cost wise, that adds around £17 per week, taking us to a total of £37 so far. Topping up on a rapid charger takes less time but can cost a few pence more per kWh.

So, when adjusted for real-world conditions, a full charge will take you approximately 64 miles on pure electrical energy. With a full charge overnight and a partial top-up during the day, you’ll be able to cover over 100 emissions-free miles. And thanks to the flexible eCity drivetrain, the remainder can be covered using the petrol range-extender, without the need to stop again to recharge.

That means you would be able to travel up to 533 miles per week on pure electric energy, leaving only 67 miles of your 600-total to be covered by the petrol range extender. And as the range-extender isn’t powering the drivetrain, not only should you still be able to achieve the officially stated fuel consumption of 36.7 mpg, you’ll spend less than £10 per week based on the stated average costs of petrol.

So, with all the variables considered, we estimate a total weekly fuel bill of £41, compared to £139 in the previous model. And that could save you as much as £98 per week.

2. Is the TX affordable?

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Electricity is considerably cheaper than diesel, so drivers can expect to save up to £100 per week on fuel costs by adopting new, electric eCity technology. The PCP finance deal for the TX ensures an affordable weekly payment, with no separate battery lease, and a comprehensive warranty package provides peace of mind. To see how much you could potentially save on fuel, compare the cost of running your current taxi to the cost of running a TX here.

3. The price of the new TX seems high, how can drivers afford it?

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The on-the-road price of the vehicle, including the battery, is £55,599. However, the PCP finance deal available with the new model provides affordable weekly payments as low as £177 over five years – this compares with £167 per week over four years for the previous vehicle. When you buy a new TX, you also benefit from a comprehensive three-year/120,000-mile warranty and a separate unlimited mileage, five-year warranty for the battery (which is class leading).

Don’t forget the investment cost is offset by reduced running costs.

4. Are there any subsidies available?

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​In London, TfL are implementing a de-commissioning grant for taxis between 10 and 15 years old. Owners of these taxis can receive up to £5,000 off the price of the new electric taxi. This is in addition to the £7,500 plug-in taxi included within the advertised On the Road price. Learn more about the incentives and grants which have been made available to support the TX here.

5. How much is road tax for the new TX?

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Road tax for TX is £140 per year.

Thanks to lobbying from LEVC and the LTDA we were able to bring about a change to the rules around VED. On the 6th March 2018 TX received a boost to go green when a tax exemption for electrically driven taxis came into force. The exemption, worth £1,550 to cabbies, applies to new cabs purchased from April 2018 onwards. Naturally we will be supporting the drivers who miss out on the changes.

6. How much will it cost to maintain?

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The motor which propels TX has very few serviceable parts and the range-extender only operates as necessary. This means there is far less mechanical wear, allowing us to extend the service intervals compared to a traditional diesel engine and therefore reduce the cost.

Our Aftersales partner Unipart will continue to supply spare parts, with 7,000 references provided in an easy to use catalogue. The LEVC approved service network are provided with the necessary training, tools and technical documentation to ensure a professional and efficient service, with a quick turnaround and minimal downtime.​

7. Do the option packs depreciate in value?

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Yes, they do. Just as the vehicle itself does, the packs and the features within them also depreciate in value over time. Our residual value forecasting is supplied by CAP HPI, the market leading data business for the automotive industry.

8. Can I insure TX & how much is the premium?

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Absolutely. There are several Brokers who are ready to arrange cover for the new TX without significant changes to your premium rating, such as Plan Insurance, Quotax, Cabsurance and Patons Insurance. Some Brokers advise that if you already drive a newer TX4 or Vito, you shouldn’t notice too much of a difference and anticipate the difference between insuring TX will be approximately 5-10%. If you currently drive an older model, such as a TX2, there will be a small increase due to the higher vehicle value.

9. Why are some features/items standard and others are optional?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

10. Can I purchase TX from a dealer outside of London & still get it licensed in the capital?

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Yes, you can. All TXs can get licensed in London no matter which UK dealer they have been bought from. However, no diesel taxis are allowed back in to London.

11. Where can I learn more about the new TfL taxi age limits coming into effect 1 Nov 2019?

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​The new TfL age limit regulations come into effect on 1 November 2019. TfL have developed a repository of useful information to help drivers with their questions. Further information can be found on the links below:


Learn more about TFL taxi age


Taxi age limits - additional information

12. When is the first MOT due on a new TX?

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On a brand new TX the first MOT is due after 12 months and then every 6 months thereafter.

13. If I only wanted to operate TX using the range-extender, would this invalidate the warranty?

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No, you're free to operate the vehicle as you wish. Naturally, we wouldn't recommend this; it would completely negate the economic and environmental benefits of driving using electrical energy.

Battery

1. Has the battery got to be like on empty before you charge it?

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You can charge the battery to full capacity in anyway you choose to, the battery does not need to be depleted to recharge. However, in order to get the most out of your vehicle we recommend you use every drop of energy available in the battery before recharging. For more information view our TX Driving Tips.​


View TX Driving tips

2. Will I need to replace the battery, if so how much would it cost?

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The battery in TX incorporates state of the art cell technology. It is designed to last the life of the vehicle, 15 years+, and the results of our rigorous testing and development programme are exceeding our expectations. The battery is covered by a 5-year warranty to provide drivers with the re-assurance they need over the initial finance period. This level of cover for a commercial EV is industry leading. Small improvements to battery technology will be out-paced by the growing availability of rapid charging infrastructure, so for the mid-term we don’t anticipate developing any significant improvements to the electric range. As with all developing technologies, prices drop over time. For that reason, we can't speculate on what the cost of replacing the battery in TX would be in 5, 10 or even 15 years’ time.

3. Does the battery catch fire in a crash?

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The battery in our electric vehicles is protected against extreme heat by a tough metal casing. In an event of an accident, the automatic safety systems will completely disable all high voltage hazards in under a second of an impact being detected, preventing any electrical fault from creating a risk of fire.

4. Is the high voltage battery safe?

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The high voltage control system monitors the electrical circuits hundreds of times every second to check all of the high voltage components, the electrical connectivity and the connector sealing, are all within safe-working parameters. If any possible fault is detected, such as unintended tampering, the system is shut down to prevent injury.

5. What’s the battery capacity in TX, how much is usable, & why?

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​The drive battery fitted to TX has been developed in conjunction with LG Chem, the world’s largest automotive battery manufacturer. The gross capacity of the battery is 31kWh and around three-quarters of this is what’s known as ‘usable energy’. This means that a full charge, from 100% down to 0% on the battery charge indicator, represents 23 kWh of energy. Our article about the Battery Capacity in TX explains more, click here to learn more.

6. What about the potential for battery theft?

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As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

7. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true and am I safe?

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Electro-magnetic radiation is all around us, generated by electricity cables, radio and television signals, microwave ovens and mobile phones to name just a few. Like any product, all new vehicles have to meet strict regulations around radiation levels in order to be sold in Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) oversee these tests in the UK and our cab passed these with flying colours. 

Because our drivers spend much of their working day in close proximity to the battery, LEVC considered it necessary to gain additional specialist accreditation. The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) have developed stringent guidelines designed to protect against any adverse health effects as a result of frequent long-term exposure to electric and magnetic fields.​

8. How do you manage your battery sourcing and disposal?

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LEVC are committed to building a taxi that meets the highest sustainability standards. All procurement contracts make clear our commitment to ethical procurement and the protection of human rights. Our supplier, LG Chem has a responsible mineral sourcing policy, and have a clear process in place for auditing their supply chain. They are also a member of the OECD’s Responsible Cobalt Initiative which seeks to take collective action to address the social and environmental risks of cobalt sourcing. We have worked to deliver an extremely robust battery which is intended to last the full 15 year lifespan of the vehicle. In addition, we are working with potential partners on a longer term sustainability solution and are hoping to make an announcement in due course.

9. What's the 12 V battery for and how is it used?

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​Just like a conventional vehicle, TX relies on a small 12 V battery to run the ancillary systems when the vehicle is switched off, as well as to 'start' the vehicle (in this case to activate the high voltage systems). On-board systems monitor the level of charge in this battery to protect it from going flat, but it is still possible to drain the charge. This may be caused by, for example, improper fitment of third party equipment or a taxi that is left unused for extended periods. Again however, just like a conventional vehicle, the TX can be connected to a battery charger or jump started using the remote terminals under the bonnet. If the vehicle is completely flat and the remote door locking is inoperable, a manual key is housed within the key fob and can be used in a hidden door lock to open the doors. Once restarted (or connected to a charge point) the charge in the high voltage battery is used to replenish the 12 V battery.

10. Why does TX feature a range-extender, why isn’t it all electric?

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most taxi driver’s daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. However, in a commercial vehicle, bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of our vehicles. TX is backed up by a petrol range-extender to reduce range-anxiety and provide greater usability and flexibility.

11. What happens to old battery packs once they come out of a taxi?

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Recyclability plays an important part in LEVC’s product development strategy, with more than 95% of the materials in TX classified as recyclable or recoverable at the end of the vehicle’s life.

While the usable capacity of all batteries reduces over time, the drive battery developed for TX has been designed to last the life of the vehicle, retaining its performance and range reliably for many years.

Wider industry analysis* shows that batteries removed at the end of a hybrid or electric vehicle’s life typically retain around 80% of their original storage capacity - and this is in line with our own testing. While these batteries are not suitable for immediate re-use in the same application, it is possible to refurbish and recondition the battery. However, these used batteries are also ideally suited to ‘second life’ applications, where the remaining useful storage capacity is unrelated to original automotive requirement. One example of this is the growing market for domestic and commercial energy storage and LEVC is exploring ways to reuse TX drive batteries in this way.

Regardless of the methods ultimately used, motor manufacturers remain responsible for the safe collection, recycling and disposal of all the drive battery components as part of ELV (End of Life) legislation. LEVC is committed to minimising TX’s environmental impact throughout the vehicle’s working life and into retirement.

Charging

1. Is there a list of the 'Taxi only' rapid charge points?

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The interactive map provided by City Hall shows the distribution of electric rapid charge points delivered by Transport for London (TfL) across London:


VIEW INTERACTIVE CHARGING MAP

2. How long will it take to charge the battery?

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Rapid charging points can recharge the TX in just half an hour, meaning your vehicle could be charged in the time it takes to grab a cup of tea or bite of lunch. TfL have committed to installing 150 of these rapid chargers in London by the end of the year – whilst additional rapid chargers are being installed at petrol stations, shopping centres and airports around London.

The TX boasts the most flexible on-board charging system on the market, allowing drivers to fully utilise all home and on street charging charge points. Typical full charge times are as follows:

Full charge in 3h45 (7kW)

Full charge in 1h15 (22kW) - 2h20 (11kW)

Full charge in 30mins (50kW)

3. Is there enough on-street charging infrastructure available?

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There are currently 18,000+ charging points in the UK, with more being installed daily. LEVC are also working with local authorities and government regulators to install dedicated taxi infrastructure. For example, TFL promises to install 300 dedicated charge points by the end of 2019. There are a variety of apps, such as Zap-Map, which allow users to filter charge points by location, connector type and speed.

4. How much will it cost to charge TX?

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Whether you’re charging from home overnight, or using an on-street charging point, the cost will of course depend on the service provider. However, typically, a full recharge overnight at home shouldn’t cost you anymore than £3. And depending on the charge point and its location within London, you can expect to pay between £5 and £7.50 for a full charge.

There are of course, many factors that can affect fuel consumption, including driving style and even the weather. You can find our full list of driving tips and a video on how to optimise your fuel below.

At Home (7kW) - Costing around £3

Fast On-Street (11kW) Costing around £5

Rapid On-Street (50kW) - Costing around £7

5. How do I charge overnight?

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LEVC have a partnered with Chargemaster to provide a onestop solution for home-charging.

For those who do not have access to off-street parking, the On-street Residential Charge Point Scheme helps local authorities to support drivers with no access to off-street home charging.

6. I’ve seen other electric vehicles plugged in to lamp posts. Can the TX be recharged this way too?

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Absolutely, TX is compatible with Type 2 charging which is the standard used on most residential lamp post charge points – which gives drivers access to an even larger potential charging infrastructure. What’s more, drivers are also able to speak to their local council to request a free of charge residential charge point closer to their home - though the exact policy varies from Borough to Borough.

7. How can I get a Home charge unit installed on my driveway?

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We have partnered with ChargeMaster, the leading suppliers of home charge units in the UK, to offer a one-stop solution for installation of your very own 7kW home charge unit; capable of charging the TX in just 3 hours and 45 minutes overnight. More information, as well as an instructional video is available here.

8. Can TX charge using the Tesla 120 kW charge points?

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The Tesla Superchargers are exclusive to Tesla vehicles, however TX can maximise use of the available on-street charging infrastructure because of its market-leading charging capabilities - with access to slow (<7kW), fast (<22kW) & rapid (50kW) charging via different sockets.

9. Is the charging lead that comes with TX fitted with a normal 3-pin plug?

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TX comes with Type 2 / CCS (the most common variety of charger). Although both electric vehicles can be charged using a domestic 3-pin socket we prefer drivers use a traditional wall box or charge post for a several reasons. Not only is the rate of charge much slower (typically 2.5kW), there is the risk of overloading circuits that are not designed for this type of use.

However for those drivers who wish to purchase a 3-pin plug your local dealer will be able to supply one for £320 ex. VAT.

10. If I charge at home how would I work out the yearly charging costs of running the taxi for my tax returns?

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We’ve partnered with Chargemaster - the UK's leading supplier of home chargers - who can offer a Smart Charger which makes tax returns simpler by generating reports to show the energy used specifically for vehicle charging. Please contact your local dealer to learn more or contact Chargemaster.

11. What is the difference between the Type 2 / CCS & CHADdeMO socket on the vehicle, when do I use each one?

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The Type 2 plug (also known as ‘Mennekes’) is the most common variety of socket. A separate cable is usually attached to the charge point at one end and to the top portion of the CCS (Combined Charging System) socket on the TX.

Type 2 connectors provide ‘slow’ and ‘fast’ charging using mains power (AC). At home, a wall box can provide power up to 7kW. On-street this increases to between 7kW and 22kW, depending on the individual charge point. Thanks to its sophisticated on-board charging system, TX is capable of charging at the maximum power provided by these posts. The charge point and taxi communicate with each other using a system known as ‘Mode 3’, to optimise the charging cycle.

To recharge in the shortest time possible, on-street rapid chargers provide direct current (DC) at a rate of 50kW. For these chargers, the cables are tethered to the charge point – just like at a traditional petrol station. The European standard connector for rapid-charging is the CCS (Combined Charging System) plug, which uses the same socket as the Type 2 fast charger as well as the two lower pins.

The other on-street charge socket available is known as CHAdeMO. This Japanese tethered connector provides up to 50kW DC rapid-charging, just like the CCS, via a dedicated socket. While this connector type is becoming less common for new infrastructure installations, there remains a wide network of existing charging points that use this format, in fact as of August 2017 50% of all rapid-charge points currently utilise a CHAdeMO connector (source: Zap-Map).

12. Is it safe to leave my TX plugged in charging overnight, even when the battery is fully charged?

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Yes it's perfectly safe. Home charging using a dedicated 7kW wall box is the most common and recommended method for charging an electric vehicle. Not only is it the easiest way - simply plug in at night and wake up to a fully charged vehicle, but it's also the cheapest with a full charge costing around £3.

The battery in TX is monitored and managed by sophisticated on-board systems which, among their many other functions, continually speak to the charge point when it's plugged in to ensure the rate of charging and discharging is carefully controlled - so basically, when the battery is full, it stops receiving charge. For this reason, it's also perfectly safe to leave your EV plugged in charging if you go on holiday. In fact, we recommend you do so, that way the 12V battery is also fully charged upon return.

13. Is there any reason why the petrol range-extender can’t be used to charge the battery?

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Charging the battery from the range-extender would lead to more cabs idling in the city. This not only increases emissions but is inefficient; it costs far more to convert petrol into electricity than it does to plug-in, so it’s better to use petrol only as much as is necessary and to recharge the battery by plugging in when possible. The different drive modes allow you to deploy your electric power as suits your working day.

This is made possible because the battery and charging system allow for better electric-only range and faster, more flexible re-charging. The range-extender provides additional peace of mind with a total electrically driven range of 316 miles before the need to recharge or refill.

14. Where can I view the ever growing list of 'Taxi only' charge points, either using the Zap-Map App or online?

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We've partnered with Zap-Map, the UK’s leading electric vehicle charging platform, on activities related to EV charging services. Their comprehensive map is used to support TX drivers assess the availability of charging facilities in their region; first in London, and then across other UK cities.

Zap-Map have filters which allow you to select 'Taxi Only' charge points, in addition, TfL have a published list on their web site, see link below.


VISIT TFL

15. What should I do if an on-street charge point isn't working?

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We encourage drivers to notify the network operators directly in these situations using the contact information on the charge point, in many cases they can resolve issues quickly remotely. Please feel free to make LEVC aware and we will also notify the network operator.

16. Can I charge at the older CHAdeMO charge points?

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TX is equipped with a fast, flexible charging system which incorporates AC ‘fast’ charging at up to 22kW and DC ‘rapid’ charging at up to 50kW, with the European-standard CCS (Combined Charging System) socket type fitted as standard. To provide 100% coverage of the UK charging network, we also offer an additional rapid charge socket, compatible with the Japanese CHAdeMO standard. While the majority of rapid charge posts are fitted with both types of lead and they provide the same function, some older posts may feature only the CHAdeMO connector. For drivers living or operating close to one of these locations, the additional compatibility allows them to take full advantage of the local charge point.

17. Which charge card should I get to recharge on-street?

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We've secured a number of exclusive offers for TX owners in London which include preferential tariffs and free memberships. We suggest you sign up to:

- ESBusing the taxi package (free membership and 25p per kWh charging)

- POLAR Taxi is credit/debit card only and 22p per kWh (POLAR Plus is not available for taxi drivers at the moment)

- Source London (free membership & 30% discount on charging sessions)

For drivers outside of London, POLAR and Charge Your Car are among the UK’s largest public charging networks so we recommend joining them to access their on-street charging facilities.

Published: 28/06/2018

18. Can TX use the 350 kW chargers?

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Although a few sites are able to offer higher public charging rates, the current standard for DC rapid charging across the UK and Europe is 50kW and we have optimised TX to re-charge from these posts. This means both vehicles are able to regulate the energy available from the charge post to ensure the maximum level of charge possible during the charge cycle.

19. Can I charge my electric vehicle in the rain?

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Yes, the charging plugs feature several layers of in built protection which means it's perfectly safe to plug your EV in when it's raining. As a general tip, avoid pointing the connector up towards the downfall.

20. What should I do if an EV is plugged in to a charge point, they’re done charging but don’t move along?

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If drivers feel a charge point has been used for an excessive period of time we recommend notifying the charge point operator, local authority, or local transport body responsible for that particular charging network – particularly dedicated taxi charge points. Contact details are generally displayed on either signage, the charge point itself or online. We encourage drivers where possible to provide relevant supporting evidence that the same EV has overstayed the allowed period.

LEVC regularly meets with legislators, local authorities and network operators across the UK and have highlighted the need for enforcement of charge points. This is something that is being reviewed locally and some areas are introducing enforcement policies.

21. I’ve booked a test drive in TX. Can I use on-street charger with a debit card only, or do I have to register with the different operators?

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The TfL taxi only charge points are credit/debit card capable. With other networks it will pay to check with the network operator, alternatively please refer to ZapMap which will advise how to access different chargers.

Signing up to a network will mean an RFID (Radio-frequency identification) card is issued, this can take up to five days, so not suitable for a test drive situation.​

22. What changes regarding the OLEV grant for the supply & installation of ‘Home Charge Points’ are coming July 1st 2019?

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As of Monday July 1st the £500 Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) grant to subsidise the supply and installation of ‘Home Charge Points’ will only apply to ‘Smart’ Home Charge Points that meet the technical specifications and have been approved OLEV.

‘Smart’ Home Chargers provide drivers with many benefits including:


The ability to schedule home charging eventsThis can help drivers save money by encouraging off-peak charging when tariffs are lower
The ability to separate EV charging from home energy consumptionMaking it easier for the reporting of energy as business expense

23. If I've already received the OLEV Home Charge Grant, can I apply again for a new 'Smart' Home Charger grant?

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​Customers are only able to claim the OLEV Home Charge Grant once, therefore a second application cannot be made to upgrade their existing charge point. In many cases the existing home charge points are ‘plug and go’, there is nothing wrong with them and customers can continue to use them. LEVC is also exploring alternative technology coming to market that will allow customers to use their existing charge point with the opportunity to access cheaper off-peak tariffs – we will share details if this is a compatible technology. 

24. How much will a 'Smart' Charger cost and what are the benefits of having one?

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BP Chargemaster are LEVC’s existing home charging partner and the commercial offering for a ‘Smart’ Home Charger as of July 1st 2019 will be £359 (incl. VAT).

EO Charging are LEVC's home charging partner in Scotland, and with the additional grant available to Scottish drivers this will mean a standard installation will be £59.

'Smart’ charging technology is more expensive than a simple ‘plug and go’, however, with their innovative features will help reduce TX home charging costs for drivers in the long-term.

‘Smart’ Home Chargers provide drivers with many benefits including:

The ability to schedule home charging eventsThis can help drivers save money by encouraging off-peak charging when tariffs are lower
The ability to separate EV charging from home energy consumptionMaking it easier for the reporting of energy as business expense

25. Which 'Smart' home chargers can I use?

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LEVC spoke with a range of suppliers that had successfully gone through the OLEV approval process and had also tested their products against TX to ensure charging compatibility.

LEVC selected suppliers based on the quality of product, their experience in the market, ability, transparency of offer, and customer service. We have also factored in the added value the suppliers offer such as access to public and taxi dedicated charging networks and future propositions.

BP Chargemaster and EO Charging are LEVC's designated home charging partners. 

26. How can I get an on-street charger installed near my house?

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There are several options we recommend to drivers.

You can register your interest with Ubitricity who retrofit existing street lights with EV charging facilities, or submit a recommendation on PowerMyStreet, who offer Londoners the chance to nominate their preferred location for new on-street charge points. Alternatively, you can speak to your local council to see what provisions they have for residents who are interested in getting an on-street charger.

Please note, every local authority has its own legislations in terms of procurement and installation of on-street EV charge points in residential areas. Thus, LEVC is unable to guarantee any possible installation options or timelines.

27. What is self-charging and is TX a self-charging electric vehicle?

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The term ‘self-charging’ is a marketing phrase used to describe a conventional parallel hybrid drivetrain – i.e. one which cannot be plugged in to charge. TX is a range-extended electric vehicle which combine the environmental and economic advantages of a plug-in battery electric vehicle, with the flexibility of a conventional or hybrid one.

Recharging an electric vehicle using mains electricity is far more efficient, more environmentally-friendly (particularly when that energy is generated sustainable) and much more cost effective. By contrast, converting expensive (and heavily-taxed) petrol into electricity results in far higher fuel costs.

The range-extender, fitted as standard, can maintain the charge in the battery as required to provide complete operational flexibility. It allows the driver to preserve electric range for use later in the shift, or to continue operating the vehicle once the charge is depleted until it is possible or convenient to stop and plug-in.

Range

1. Would it save much battery if you turned the lights and radio off during the day?

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The saving would be so minimal it would be unnoticeable. Just as in a conventional petrol or diesel vehicle, by having the lights on you wouldn't notice a change in fuel mpg, the same is true here with TX and battery range.

2. Is it the case that if the range-extender is turned on inside the Low Emission Zone that your vehicle will attract a charge?

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Not necessarily. Typically a Low Emission Zone will consist of a charge for any vehicle which does not reach a minimum standard for emissions to enter this zone. As TX meets the required emission standards in London, it is exempt from the scheme or is subject to a 100% discount if a charge in inadvertently applied.

3. How was the official electric range calculated? Was it on a straight run, with or without traffic, lights and heating on?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test is the official standard all European car manufacturers are obliged to follow when publishing range, fuel economy and emissions data. The tests are intended to provide repeatable, consistent figures for comparison and are therefore generally performed on a dynamometer.

However, it is widely recognised that these can be difficult to achieve in ‘real-world’ driving. As a result of this, we state the official electric-only range of TX is 62 miles.

4. An WLTP official published range of over 60 miles? But the Tesla can do 200+ miles.

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most commercial vehicle operator's daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. Bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of the electric taxi. There are no plans to change the batteries used in TX.

5. I travel 60-70 miles per day - will the TX be able to cope?

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Absolutely, a recent feasibility study carried out by our Manchester dealership showed that over 70% of taxi drivers within the region travelled approximately 70 miles on their average working day. That means that for most of Manchester’s taxi drivers, an overnight charge would enable them to carry out almost all their working day on pure electric power, if they chose to do so. With the backup of the petrol generator adding almost 300 miles, nobody travelling this distance needs suffer from range-anxiety.

6. Does the petrol range-extender connect to the electric motor or does it charge the batteries to operate the electric motor?

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TX is powered by an electric motor that drives the rear wheels, the range-extender supports the electric motor to remove any range-anxiety. There is no mechanical connection between the range-extender & the wheels, it is there to maintain the charge in the battery pack if & when required.

7. Why does the electric range differ if I use an on-street rapid charger and my 7kW home charger?

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This is because the range forecast is based on the temperature of the battery and a warmer battery operates more efficiently. When charging on-street the battery is warmer, because the vehicle has been in use. When charging at home, set the pre-conditioning to help everything warm up before you hit the road to maximise your range. Please see our Pre Conditioning Guide available here.

8. Is the Pure Electric range of TX effected by cold weather conditions?

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The published electric range figures are determined by the official test procedures and, as with official fuel economy data, LEVC are legally required to communicate these figures. The tests are conducted in laboratory conditions and are designed primarily to provide a consistent comparison between different vehicle models. Efficiency will vary during real-world driving due to the huge number of variables involved; such as driver behaviour, ambient temperature, traffic conditions, equipment used, number of passengers on-board and so on. 

A new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption and range was introduced for all vehicle manufacturers in September 2018, which means you will see different figures shown for the same vehicle. The WLTP test (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) replaces the NEDC standard that has been used since 1992 and is designed to produce figures more representative of real-world driving. If you’d like to know more about the new WLTP test, more information can be found at www.wltpfacts.eu.

Because we recognise that the official range can be difficult to achieve, we have always used real-world data to calculate the fuel savings possible and instead we use this number in all of our Marketing material. The real-world average range of 62 miles has been determined by monitoring the performance of several drivers over many months. In the summer months it is possible to achieve better than this figure and conversely in the winter the figure will be lower. Temperature affects the efficiency of all vehicles, but affects electric vehicles in particular as both the batteries and occupants prefer to be at a comfortable temperature and there is no ‘free’ heat source as in an internal combustion vehicle. There are ways of reducing energy consumption, particularly during cold weather; why not watch our Driving Tips Video Guide to learn more - www.levc.com/driving-tips.

While the electric-only range is important for many reasons, it is not the best measure of overall efficiency. TX features a range-extender, so not only can it operate as a pure electric vehicle, it provides the flexibility and peace of mind of a conventional powertrain, but with greater efficiency. If the battery is depleted and it is not convenient to recharge, operating on the range-extender returns fuel economy more than 25% better than our previous TX4 Euro 6 model, with significantly lower tailpipe emissions. Through a combination of re-charging the battery when convenient and operating on petrol power when it is not, we would still expect drivers to achieve significant fuel savings over their previous diesel cab.

9. I see a new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption & range has been introduced, how does this effect TX?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test replaces the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) for all vehicle manufacturers. The test is designed to provide official figures closer to what drivers could achieve in the real-world, but the main purpose is still to enable comparisons between different vehicles.

Technology

1. If operating in Pure EV mode, when the range reaches zero will TX automatically switch to a different drive mode to engage the range-extender?

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When operating in Smart mode your electric vehicle will automatically activate the range-extender before the range reaches zero. In Pure EV it will not, instead the vehicle will prompt the driver to change drive mode before the range reaches zero and then limit the power delivery. If these prompts are ignored the vehicle will ultimately stop. When the range reaches zero, in order to get the taxi started again the driver will need to select a different drive mode.

2. Is it possible to download or add 3rd party “apps” - such as the Zap Map charge point locator - to the touch screen console in TX?

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To protect the interface we control what can be installed, as untested apps can interfere with the existing functions. At this moment in time 3rd party apps from the App Store or Google Store aren't compatible with the touch screen console. However there is ample space on the accessory bar, and complimentary on-board Wi-Fi, which allows drivers to attach a tablet and/or mobile phone which could run 3rd party apps such as Zap-Map or Android Auto.

3. What card payment readers are approved to use in TX?

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We're constantly working with providers to give drive the greatest choice possible. For a list of card payment providers approved by TfL for use in the electric taxi please click below.


VIEW APPROVED CARD READERS

4. Has TX got air conditioning in the driver and passenger compartments as standard?

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Yes both compartments have independent climate control with powerful, automatic digital air conditioning and heating.

5. Why is the petrol range-extender fitted with a turbo?

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The turbo helps improve the efficiency and durability of the engine.

6. Is it true the petrol range-extender is governed by a sensor that if you went in to certain places in London they will be able to stop it from working until you're out of that area?

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Unlike other European cities we're working with, there is currently no geo-fencing requirement in London. However if TfL were to introduce this requirement, we have a supplier in place who we'll work with to fit the necessary on-board software.

7. I sometimes hear the fan on when the engine is off or whilst on charge, is this normal?

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Just as in diesel or petrol vehicles with traditional combustion engines, it's normal for the fan to run for a short while after the vehicle has shut down. Since the engine has stopped running it no longer circulates coolant to cool it down, therefore the fan kicks in to cool the necessary components - you'd definitely expect to hear in during the warmer summer months. It's also worth noting that TX will also run the fans as required while plugged in to charge, for the same reason.

8. Does the odometer on the display show a total distance travelled on electric & petrol, if so can they be shown separately?

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Currently the odometer shows a combination of the distance travelled on electric and petrol. We aim to be very transparent with our new vehicle and we're continually looking for ways to share more information with drivers, which is why we're looking at how to separate this data in the future.

9. If the card payment system in the rear stays on overnight, won’t this drain the vehicle battery?

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We've worked closely with all of the approved card payment providers and supplied installation instructions which allow their units to automatically turn off an hour after the vehicle has stopped. All card payment systems can also be wired so the reader in the passenger compartment always stays on. Systems such as Verifone use their own battery which does not interfere with the electrics of the cab; there have been no instances where it has been confirmed that the unit drains the vehicle battery.

10. If I left my TX unused for a week will it still start?

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Yes, that isn't a problem, just like any other vehicle TX relies on a 12V battery to start the system.

11. Is TX classed as a Zero Emission Capable vehicle?

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TfL classify a zero emissions capable taxi as one with an official combined CO2 output of less than 50g, which can travel at least 30 miles on electric only. Both TX and VN5 comfortably exceeds these requirements with remarkably low CO2 emissions.

12. Are there any guides for operating TX?

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There most certainly are. We understand that diving any new vehicle is exciting, but it also has the potential to be intimidating. To help improve customer confidence for those living with TX or driving during unaccompanied test drives, the TX Quick-Start Guide provides a handy point of reference on the most basic vehicle functions. These functions should always be explained to the driver before they get behind the wheel, and our free download can act as a physical reminder to provide reassurance and ensure a more enjoyable driving experience. Alternatively, you can always refer to our free TX Operator App, available in Google Play and Apple App Store.


DOWNLOAD TX QUICK-START GUIDE

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13. Does the fuel cut off switch at the boot disable the vehicle completely?

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No the fuel cut off switch simply stops the petrol range-extender from working, you can still operate in Pure EV mode. The switch is part of TfL Conditions of Fitness but isn't really necessary on newer vehicles with more sophisticated engine safety precautions.

14. Why does TX turn off automatically if left idling for a period of time?

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The TX electrical system requires various circuits to remain active while the meter is running. To preserve the charge of the 12v battery and ensure sufficient energy to restart the vehicle, power to the meter is switched off after one hour of inactivity. It is possible to extend the waiting time by another hour by cycling the ignition.

15. What type of electric vehicle is TX?

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TX is a range-extended electric vehicle. This means that it is always driven electrically by a motor and powered by a battery. 

Because the nature of a commercial vehicle operator's work is varied and unpredictable by its nature, both also have a small petrol range-extender fitted. This is not connected to the wheels and cannot drive the vehicle as an engine, it acts as a generator to send electrical energy to the battery and ensures drivers are able to complete their fare before needing to stop to recharge. It is this technology which overcomes the range anxiety faced by many operators and gives the confidence to consider an ultra-low emissions cab. 

As well as emitting none of the harmful particulates associated with a diesel engine, the combined CO2 emissions on the official WLTP drive cycle, which includes use of the range-extender, is between 19 and 21 g/km respectively. 

16. How do I pre-warm/pre-cool my TX using mains electricity rather than taking energy from the drive battery?

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In an electric vehicle, the cabin temperature is maintained electrically using energy from the drive battery.

When charging your TX, whether overnight at home or on-street, you can set a ‘Parking Climate’ timer to prewarm or pre-cool the cabin using the mains electricity. This feature automatically activates the climate control system to restore the last set temperature and fan speed. This means energy isn’t taken from the battery to do the same job after you’ve driven away, helping to preserve your electric range…plus, you get to climb into a cab that’s just the way you like it.

17. Some drivers have described a feeling of ‘surging forward’ while slowing down. Does this indicate a fault with the vehicle?

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This sensation is a characteristic of the way the braking system operates, it does not affect the braking performance of the vehicle, or indicate a fault with the vehicle. 

Antilock Braking Systems (ABS) use sensors to identify if a wheel is beginning to rotate more slowly than expected during braking, indicating a loss of grip that will lead to the wheel ‘locking up’. Hydraulic valves reduce the braking effort on the affected wheels, preventing them from skidding and allowing the driver to maintain control.

TX features regenerative braking, recovering energy that would usually be lost while slowing down to recharge the drive battery. The regeneration generates drag on the rear wheels as the vehicle gradually slows while coasting and up to around 10% of brake pedal effort.

When wheel slip is identified, the system must react by deactivating the regeneration to reduce the drag on the rear wheels. This could be the result of a heavy braking event, slippery conditions or a change of road surface (such as ironworks). Disengaging the regenerative braking has the effect of reducing the rate of deceleration; this can give the feeling of vehicle surging forward and drivers typically react to this sensation by applying the brake pedal harder. In many cases, the affected wheel has already begun to rotate normally, and the vehicle reacts to the new input by slowing more rapidly.

This sensation only occurs at low speeds and under light braking, where the vehicle is being slowed by the regeneration. In emergency braking events, most of the braking effort is already being achieved using the hydraulic wheel brakes and so the sensation of the ABS working in the conventional way is more familiar.

Working in conjunction with the ABS system, Autonomous Emergency Braking monitors the road ahead, ready to react if an imminent collision is detected. The system operates more quickly and effectively than most humans can and while antilock braking systems normally decrease stopping distances, on very slippery surfaces, such as gravel or snow, ABS may actually increase the overall braking distance, but allow the driver to maintain steering control.

The very latest safety technology, fitted as standard, is just one reason the new TX is our safest taxi ever.

18. Does the TX have a catalytic converter?

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Yes it does – it’s just one of the emissions-reducing technologies utilised by our highly-efficient range-extender, which contributes to its combined CO2 emissions (on the WLTP cycle) of just 19 and 21g/km respectively, which assumes some use of the petrol range-extender.

19. How does the air-conditioner system work in TX?

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The heating and air-conditioning system in TX is dual-zone, so as long as the system is switched on, the driver and passengers can set their own independent temperature and fan speed. The driver also has the ability to control or turn off the rear cabin from the central touchscreen.

20. Can I adjust the volume of the road traffic announcements?

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Yes. All sounds can be adjusted in the settings of your vehicle.

Find the setting on your touch screen by clicking: Settings > Sound > System Volumes.

All the information regarding the different features of TX and more instructions are available on the TX Operator App, which can be downloaded for free.

Safety & Security

1. How strong is the body structure?

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Pound for pound, Aluminium absorbs twice as much energy as mild-steel, effectively dissipating the forces experienced in a crash. We use hot-cured adhesive to bond our body structure together, a process more than twice as strong as welding that allows long, consistent contact across the entire joint. Similar technology has been used successfully in aerospace and sports cars for over 20 years. Is the panoramic roof safe? The panoramic roof creates a light and breezy atmosphere in the passenger compartment and gives passengers a new perspective on the city.

The thick, laminated glass is similar to that used for the windscreen. It contains a special tinting layer that block 95% of emitted light energy entering the cabin, helping to keep the interior at a comfortable temperature. Due to its location, it is also far less susceptible to damage than a windscreen - and if the worse should happen it is far quicker and easier to replace than a traditional roof panel, minimising repair costs.

2. What about the potential for battery theft?

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As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

3. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true?

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All vehicles manufactured in the UK have to meet strict regulations around electromagnetic radiation levels in order to be sold around Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency oversee these tests in the UK, and our cab passed these with flying colours. In addition, our battery technology has been used in other Geely group vehicles including Volvo Cars, with owners covering millions upon millions of miles.

4. Have TfL approved any dashboard cameras for use in TX?

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Yes, at time of publish the Vision Track VT1000 has been approved by TfL for use in the TX Vista model taxi. LEVC are not involved in the approval process, however to facilitate fitment of aftermarket accessories - such as dash cams - TX comes with a dedicated wiring harness which is compatible with most versions.

5. What is Private Locking and how it keeps my valuables safe in TX?

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Private Locking is a standard feature fitted to all TX taxis and it is there to help you protect your valuables when you are away from the taxi. The Private Locking function works a bit like the safe in your hotel room; simply enter a passcode to securely lock the boot compartment. Once activated, it is impossible to access the boot compartment, even if the vehicle key is present.

The function provides additional peace of mind when leaving valuable in the vehicle, particularly if it has been left in the care of the third party, such as at a car wash or car parking service. For instructions on how to activate this feature please download our complimentary TX Operator App, or download our Private Locking user guide below.


DOWNLOAD USER GUIDE


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - IOS


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - ANDROID


6. Does TX have Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS)?

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One of the many advantages of electric propulsion is the removal of engine noise. However, we have become accustomed to using the sound of an engine as warning of an approaching vehicle; this is particularly true of vulnerable road users and service animals.

There is currently no legislation in force requiring electric vehicles to generate an artificial noise. Noise generating systems that operate at different vehicle speeds, volumes or with differing types of sound are potentially confusing to other road users. It is also argued that such a noise could negate the noise pollution benefits of an electric vehicle. To resolve these challenges, a common standard is currently being developed. New legislation requiring a pedestrian warning sound, known as AVAS, comes into force on 1st July 2019 for newly type-approved vehicles (i.e. the launch of an all-new vehicle). From 1st July 2021 the legislation extends to all newly registered vehicles. We are therefore developing an AVAS system in-line with this legislation and aim to introduce it at the earliest opportunity.

TX is fitted with a sophisticated active safety system called Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). This system monitors the road ahead using cameras and radar sensors and if a vulnerable road user is at risk, the vehicle will apply the brakes automatically to avoid a collision. A range of additional driver aids, such as parking sensors and a rear camera, are also available to help drivers take extra care when manoeuvring in busy congested areas.

7. How protected am I in the driver cabin of TX?

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​Very. Drivers’ safety is one of our priorities. That’s why we have designed a resistant partition screen for the purposes of improving the safety of drivers and reducing threat of attack from passengers. At the same time, it remains as unobtrusive as possible, so both driver and passengers can have their own private space.

8. Is there a way to turn off the Automatic Emergency Breaking (AEB)?

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The AEB is an active safety feature designed to protect drivers and other road users; it has been proven to help improve road safety and reduce accident rates - which will further reduce insurance costs. For these reasons it can't be turned off. Drivers can however adjust the volume of the audio warning. For instructions on how to do this, refer to our free TX Operator App, which can be downloaded here:


DOWNLOAD USER GUIDE


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - IOS


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - ANDROID

9. How are occupants protected from Air Pollution?

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Working on busy streets for long hours means commercial vehicle operators are one of the most at-risk groups for exposure to poor air-quality and the resulting long-term health impacts. While cities move towards more sustainable transport, helped by LEVC's eCity electric drivetrain, today’s drivers spend much of their day behind the tailpipe of the car ahead.

The cabin air filter fitted to TX features an extra-large surface area, ensuring excellent airflow while capturing pollen, fine particles and impurities to prevent contaminants from entering the vehicle’s interior. The electronic air pollution sensor even monitors the quality of the air flowing to the interior vents and automatically closes the intake if high levels of pollution are detected; protecting you and your passengers from the harmful effects of Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Oxide and ground level Ozone, so you can breathe-easy.

When air pollution is detected and all doors and windows are closed, the exterior intake is closed and the ‘Cleanzone’ indicator on the touchscreen changes from white to blue. Re-circulation turns off automatically after 20 minutes to prevent Carbon Dioxide build up inside the cabin.

Quality

1. What quality assurances take place?

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Our Customer Acceptance Team Area work from a dedicated Quality Centre within our Ansty factory. Here they verify that every vehicle has been built to process and is fault free before leaving the facility. They have access to the very latest testing facilities such as a wheel and headlight alignment rig, rolling-road, ‘squeak and rattle’ test track, ‘monsoon’ water test, sophisticated electrical test equipment, vehicle lifts and high-intensity lighting.

2. How has the vehicle been tested?

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Our team of development engineers are based at Horiba MIRA, one of the most comprehensive vehicle test facilities in the UK. More than 80 prototype vehicles over the last three years, adapting industry best practise to the specific requirements of a taxi. The TX has also been subject to road tests in some of the most extreme environments in the world, from the deserts of Arizona to the Arctic Circle. The next stage of this test programme is to hand the vehicle over to London taxi drivers for real-world feedback from drivers and passengers.  

3. How can you guarantee the quality of the vehicle?

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TX has been designed and built from the ground up, using the latest technology by a hugely-experienced team of experts recruited from across the automotive industry and with the benefit of our unrivalled experience in the taxi trade.

Our brand new, purpose-built facility in Ansty has been constructed with the same approach, with the best equipment, processes and systems dedicated to ensuring unrivalled quality.

The electric powertrain in both vehicles has undergone the most extensive testing and development we’ve ever undertaken; in fact, the new TX has completed more test mileage than all of our previous models put together.

4. Why are TX tyres rated 'H' (130mph), when the taxi has a maximum speed of 80mph?​

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130mph is the typical tyre speed rating within the automotive industry as it is cost effective and efficient. The rating indicates how durable the tyre is at that speed before deteriorating. Having a higher tyre speed rating has no detrimental effect, indeed we deliberately use a tyre which exceeds the speed limit because of the extra safety assurance it offers occupants. It’s also worth noting that using a tyre with a speed rating lower than the recommended rating may have an adverse effect on insurance.


5. How can I get extra protection for my TX?

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Our warranty demonstrates our confidence in the durability of this vehicle and is comparable with the best in the industry. We recognise that some customers require even greater peace of mind, so we're able to offer an extended warranty at an affordable price.

Design & Development

1. The taxi is enormous, how can it perform on London’s roads?

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The beauty of the new vehicle, beyond just its looks, is that it retains the unique turning circle and manoeuvrability of its predecessor. This means it is incredibly agile and able to run across the streets of any city in the world. Although the vehicle looks bigger it is only marginally longer but the width is the same as its predecessor.

2. Are there any plans to change the 'Taxi' light on TX?

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Following feedback from drivers and licensing authorities about the prototype design we made the roof light text bolder. We continue to listen to feedback we receive from drivers and passengers alike, and we're always looking for ways to improve the vehicle to ensure it matches as closely as possible the needs of our customers; it’s for this reason the taxi hire light is an update we’re considering for future model years. At this stage no details have been confirmed therefore we can't give an update on potential changes or when they would be implements. This is because we're very keen that any changes are properly tested. In addition, any such changes will be subject to approval from TfL which could also add time to this process. As TfL, and many other local authorities around the country, have approved TX for licence with no objections, this is the light design we’ll be continuing with for the foreseeable future. As soon as more information is available, we'll be certain to share it with drivers immediately.

3. What accessories are available for TX, can I retrofit accessories from my old taxi?

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We've launched a range of accessories for TX so drivers can tailor their vehicle to their lifestyle and working habits. All products are available from every LEVC TX retailer and can be purchased as point of sale items or stand-alone aftermarket products.


Browse TX Accessories range

4. Is there a leather passenger seat option?

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We refer to this material as vinyl we don't proclaim it's leather as some OEMs do. This is not currently planned however we are monitoring customer interest so we can consider it for future product development. The Taxi cloth used has been developed as a more breathable material with excellent durability characteristic, it is harder wearing and easier to clean than real leather making it more suitable for a taxi.

5. Why is the wheelchair position now forward-facing? TX4 used to be backward-facing.

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Thanks to generous internal dimensions, clever packaging and a retracting centre seat, there is now sufficient room in the passenger compartment to rotate a wheelchair user into a more comfortable forward-facing seating position.

While previous legislation required taxis to have a backward-facing wheelchair position, we’ve worked with authorities to update their legislation to reflect the latest safety standards - to which TX has been designed and built.

Unfortunately, it always takes time for such updates to propagate from authorities to all relevant 3rd parties. While this process takes place, if there are 3rd parties who aren't aware of the change in legislation, please let us know and we'll be happy to pursue them on behalf of drivers.

6. How do I lock / unlock the different compartments on TX?

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TX is equipped with taxi locking; this function allows the driver to control the passenger door locks using the brake pedal. The taxi-locking system fitted to TX activates door locks independently from one another, separating the driver from the passenger compartment and entry from exit. The logic ensures passengers and driver are kept safe based on ignition setting, gear selection, handbrake activation, vehicle speed and user inputs (lock/unlock buttons and interior door release handles). In practise the system is simple and intuitive to use, but for more information please download our handy 'Taxi Locking Overview' guide or the free TX operator app.


DOWNLOAD TAXI LOCKING GUIDE

DOWNLOAD ON THE APP STORE


DOWNLOAD ON GOOGLE PLAY


7. Why are certain features optional and not standard?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

8. How do I lock / unlock the different compartments on TX?

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TX is equipped with taxi locking; this function allows the driver to control the passenger door locks using the brake pedal. The taxi-locking system fitted to TX activates door locks independently from one another, separating the driver from the passenger compartment and entry from exit. The logic ensures passengers and driver are kept safe based on ignition setting, gear selection, handbrake activation, vehicle speed and user inputs (lock/unlock buttons and interior door release handles). In practise the system is simple and intuitive to use, but for more information please download our handy 'Taxi Locking Overview' guide or the free TX operator app.


DOWNLOAD USER GUIDE


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - IOS


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - ANDROID

9. What is TX made of? Does it contain cadmium metal?

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TX features an aluminium chassis bonded with incredibly strong adhesives, and is fully anodised, enhancing the vehicle’s structural strength whilst also improving efficiency and extending its range. The use of aluminium, a material 30% lighter than conventional steel, is inspired by the lightweight chassis structures of British sports cars and makes the new TX’s body stronger and lighter than any previous model. The use of aluminium, which is 100% recyclable, boosts the TX’s green credentials even further.

Just as with our previous models, the TX’s body panels have been designed for easy removal and repair, making maintenance quicker and easier. The composite materials used - which contain no cadmium metal - also mean that they already have corrosion resistance built-in. So not only will the new TX go further than the competition, it will outlast it too.

10. Do the upcoming emission regulations on Beech street, London, affect me as a TX driver?

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No. The City of London launched the UK’s first 24/7 zero emission street in spring 2020, banning all petrol and diesel vehicles for 18 months.

Access to Beech Street, which runs underneath the Brutalist designed Barbican Estate in Central London will be restricted so that only electric or hybrid vehicles, pedestrians and cyclist will be able to use it. As TX fully complies with the upcoming emission regulations, all vehicles will be able to access the street.

Requirements for Beech Street:

  • Maximum 75 g CO2/km
  • Minimum 20 mile zero emission range
  • Euro 6 equivalent NOx emission standard​


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Comfort and Convenience

1. Are there different material options for the driver seat, and if so when will they be available?

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Yes, we call it vinyl, we don't pretend it's leather like Merc do! It's not currently planned but we are monitoring customer interest. The Taxi cloth has been developed as a more breathable material with excellent durability characteristics.

2. How do I pair my phone via Bluetooth & enable the messaging function?

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It’s easy to enable the messaging function in your electric vehicle. Simply, pair your device with your vehicle ('My Taxi') via Bluetooth in the normal way. Make sure that 'Messages' in the list of displayed options is ticked. Your phone may prompt you to allow access to your text messages or you can enable this setting in the ‘My Taxi’ Bluetooth connection settings. One paired, switch off your ignition. When you re-start your taxi, the phone will reconnect and the new Bluetooth setting set will take effect.

Now, you will be notified when you receive a new message and TX can read it to you at the tap of button. You can also access existing messages and listen to them again. What is more, this function allows you to send message to a contact or reply to a message when the vehicle is stationary, and it is safe to do so.

3. How often should you have the aircon regassed?

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Air-conditioning refrigerant isn’t a service item; if used regularly (to ensure the seals are kept lubricated) the air-con should maintain pressure for many years. If you have noticed a deterioration in air-conditioning performance, we suggest you contact your LEVC dealer who will be able to investigate if there is an issue with any of the components in the heating and ventilation system.

TX

Affordability

1. Is the VN5 affordable?

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Electricity is considerably cheaper than diesel, so drivers can expect to save up to £100 per week on fuel costs by adopting new, electric eCity technology. The PCP finance deal for the VN5 ensures an affordable weekly payment, with no separate battery lease, and a comprehensive warranty package provides peace of mind. To see how much you could potentially save on fuel, compare the cost of running your current taxi to the cost of running a TX here.

2. How much will it cost to maintain?

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The motor which propels VN5 has very few serviceable parts and the range-extender only operates as necessary. This means there is far less mechanical wear, allowing us to extend the service intervals compared to a traditional diesel engine and therefore reduce the cost.

Our Aftersales partner Unipart will continue to supply spare parts, with 7,000 references provided in an easy to use catalogue. The LEVC approved service network are provided with the necessary training, tools and technical documentation to ensure a professional and efficient service, with a quick turnaround and minimal downtime.

3. Do the option packs depreciate in value?

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Yes, they do. Just as the vehicle itself does, the packs and the features within them also depreciate in value over time. Our residual value forecasting is supplied by CAP HPI, the market leading data business for the automotive industry.

4. Why are some features/items standard and others are optional?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

5. When is the first MOT due on a new VN5?

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On a brand new VN5 the first MOT is due after 12 months and then every 6 months thereafter.

6. If I only wanted to operate VN5 using the range-extender, would this invalidate the warranty?

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No, you're free to operate the vehicle as you wish. Naturally, we wouldn't recommend this; it would completely negate the economic and environmental benefits of driving using electrical energy.

Battery

1. Has the battery got to be like on empty before you charge it?

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You can charge the battery to full capacity in anyway you choose to, the battery does not need to be depleted to recharge. However, in order to get the most out of your vehicle we recommend you use every drop of energy available in the battery before recharging. For more information view our Driving Tips.​


View TX Driving tips

2. Will I need to replace the battery, if so how much would it cost?

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The battery in VN5 incorporates state of the art cell technology. It is designed to last the life of the vehicle, 15 years+, and the results of our rigorous testing and development programme are exceeding our expectations. The battery is covered by a 8-year warranty to provide drivers with the re-assurance they need over the initial finance period. This level of cover for a commercial EV is industry leading. Small improvements to battery technology will be out-paced by the growing availability of rapid charging infrastructure, so for the mid-term we don’t anticipate developing any significant improvements to the electric range. As with all developing technologies, prices drop over time. For that reason, we can't speculate on what the cost of replacing the battery in VN5 would be in 5, 10 or even 15 years’ time.

3. Does the battery catch fire in a crash?

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The battery in our electric vehicles is protected against extreme heat by a tough metal casing. In an event of an accident, the automatic safety systems will completely disable all high voltage hazards in under a second of an impact being detected, preventing any electrical fault from creating a risk of fire.

4. Is the high voltage battery safe?

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The high voltage control system monitors the electrical circuits hundreds of times every second to check all of the high voltage components, the electrical connectivity and the connector sealing, are all within safe-working parameters. If any possible fault is detected, such as unintended tampering, the system is shut down to prevent injury.

5. What’s the battery capacity in VN5, how much is usable, & why?

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The drive battery fitted to VN5 has been developed in conjunction with LG Chem, the world’s largest automotive battery manufacturer. The gross capacity of the battery is 31kWh and around three-quarters of this is what’s known as ‘usable energy’. This means that a full charge, from 100% down to 0% on the battery charge indicator, represents 23 kWh of energy.

6. What about the potential for battery theft?

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As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

7. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true and am I safe?

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Electro-magnetic radiation is all around us, generated by electricity cables, radio and television signals, microwave ovens and mobile phones to name just a few. Like any product, all new vehicles have to meet strict regulations around radiation levels in order to be sold in Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) oversee these tests in the UK and our cab passed these with flying colours. 

Because our drivers spend much of their working day in close proximity to the battery, LEVC considered it necessary to gain additional specialist accreditation. The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) have developed stringent guidelines designed to protect against any adverse health effects as a result of frequent long-term exposure to electric and magnetic fields.

8. How do you manage your battery sourcing and disposal?

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LEVC are committed to building electric vehicles that meet the highest sustainability standards. All procurement contracts make clear our commitment to ethical procurement and the protection of human rights. Our supplier, LG Chem has a responsible mineral sourcing policy, and have a clear process in place for auditing their supply chain. They are also a member of the OECD’s Responsible Cobalt Initiative which seeks to take collective action to address the social and environmental risks of cobalt sourcing. We have worked to deliver an extremely robust battery which is intended to last the full 15 year lifespan of the vehicle. In addition, we are working with potential partners on a longer term sustainability solution and are hoping to make an announcement in due course.

9. What's the 12 V battery for and how is it used?

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Just like a conventional vehicle, VN5 relies on a small 12 V battery to run the ancillary systems when the vehicle is switched off, as well as to 'start' the vehicle (in this case to activate the high voltage systems). On-board systems monitor the level of charge in this battery to protect it from going flat, but it is still possible to drain the charge. This may be caused by, for example, improper fitment of third party equipment or a taxi that is left unused for extended periods. Again however, just like a conventional vehicle, the VN5 can be connected to a battery charger or jump started using the remote terminals under the bonnet. If the vehicle is completely flat and the remote door locking is inoperable, a manual key is housed within the key fob and can be used in a hidden door lock to open the doors. Once restarted (or connected to a charge point) the charge in the high voltage battery is used to replenish the 12 V battery.

10. Why does VN5 feature a range-extender, why isn’t it all electric?

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most taxi driver’s daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. However, in a commercial vehicle, bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of our vehicles. VN5 is backed up by a petrol range-extender to reduce range-anxiety and provide greater usability and flexibility.

11. What happens to old battery packs once they come out of VN5?

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Recyclability plays an important part in LEVC’s product development strategy, with more than 95% of the materials in VN5 classified as recyclable or recoverable at the end of the vehicle’s life.

While the usable capacity of all batteries reduces over time, the drive battery developed for VN5 has been designed to last the life of the vehicle, retaining its performance and range reliably for many years.

Wider industry analysis* shows that batteries removed at the end of a hybrid or electric vehicle’s life typically retain around 80% of their original storage capacity - and this is in line with our own testing. While these batteries are not suitable for immediate re-use in the same application, it is possible to refurbish and recondition the battery. However, these used batteries are also ideally suited to ‘second life’ applications, where the remaining useful storage capacity is unrelated to original automotive requirement. One example of this is the growing market for domestic and commercial energy storage and LEVC is exploring ways to reuse VN5 drive batteries in this way.

Regardless of the methods ultimately used, motor manufacturers remain responsible for the safe collection, recycling and disposal of all the drive battery components as part of ELV (End of Life) legislation. LEVC is committed to minimising VN5’s environmental impact throughout the vehicle’s working life and into retirement.

Charging

1. How long will it take to charge the battery?

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Rapid charging points can recharge the VN5 in just half an hour, meaning your vehicle could be charged in the time it takes to grab a cup of tea or bite of lunch. TfL have committed to installing 150 of these rapid chargers in London by the end of the year – whilst additional rapid chargers are being installed at petrol stations, shopping centres and airports around London.

The VN5 boasts the most flexible on-board charging system on the market, allowing drivers to fully utilise all home and on street charging charge points. Typical full charge times are as follows:

Full charge in 3h45 (7kW)

Full charge in 1h15 (22kW) - 2h20 (11kW)

Full charge in 30mins (50kW)​

2. Is there enough on-street charging infrastructure available?

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There are currently 18,000+ charging points in the UK, with more being installed daily. LEVC are also working with local authorities and government regulators to install dedicated taxi infrastructure. For example, TFL promises to install 300 dedicated charge points by the end of 2019. There are a variety of apps, such as Zap-Map, which allow users to filter charge points by location, connector type and speed.​

3. How much will it cost to charge VN5?

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Whether you’re charging from home overnight, or using an on-street charging point, the cost will of course depend on the service provider. However, typically, a full recharge overnight at home shouldn’t cost you anymore than £3. And depending on the charge point and its location within London, you can expect to pay between £5 and £7.50 for a full charge.

There are of course, many factors that can affect fuel consumption, including driving style and even the weather. 

At Home (7kW) - Costing around £3

Fast On-Street (11kW) Costing around £5

Rapid On-Street (50kW) - Costing around £7​

4. How do I charge overnight?

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LEVC have a partnered with Chargemaster to provide a onestop solution for home-charging.

For those who do not have access to off-street parking, the On-street Residential Charge Point Scheme helps local authorities to support drivers with no access to off-street home charging.​

5. How can I get a Home charge unit installed on my driveway?

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We have partnered with ChargeMaster, the leading suppliers of home charge units in the UK, to offer a one-stop solution for installation of your very own 7kW home charge unit; capable of charging the VN5 in just 3 hours and 45 minutes overnight. More information as well as an instructional video is available here.

6. Can VN5 charge using the Tesla 120 kW charge points?

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The Tesla Superchargers are exclusive to Tesla vehicles, however VN5 can maximise use of the available on-street charging infrastructure because of its market-leading charging capabilities - with access to slow (<7kW), fast (<22kW) & rapid (50kW) charging via different sockets.​

7. Is the charging lead that comes with VN5 fitted with a normal 3-pin plug?

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VN5 comes with Type 2 / CCS (the most common variety of charger). Although both electric vehicles can be charged using a domestic 3-pin socket we prefer drivers use a traditional wall box or charge post for a several reasons. Not only is the rate of charge much slower (typically 2.5kW), there is the risk of overloading circuits that are not designed for this type of use.

However for those drivers who wish to purchase a 3-pin plug your local dealer will be able to supply one for £320 ex. VAT.​

8. If I charge at home how would I work out the yearly charging costs of running the taxi for my tax returns?

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We’ve partnered with Chargemaster - the UK's leading supplier of home chargers - who can offer a Smart Charger which makes tax returns simpler by generating reports to show the energy used specifically for vehicle charging. Please contact your local dealer to learn more or contact Chargemaster.​

9. What is the difference between the Type 2 / CCS & CHADdeMO socket on the vehicle, when do I use each one?

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The Type 2 plug (also known as ‘Mennekes’) is the most common variety of socket. A separate cable is usually attached to the charge point at one end and to the top portion of the CCS (Combined Charging System) socket on the VN5.

Type 2 connectors provide ‘slow’ and ‘fast’ charging using mains power (AC). At home, a wall box can provide power up to 7kW. On-street this increases to between 7kW and 22kW, depending on the individual charge point. Thanks to its sophisticated on-board charging system, VN5 is capable of charging at the maximum power provided by these posts. The charge point and van communicate with each other using a system known as ‘Mode 3’, to optimise the charging cycle.

To recharge in the shortest time possible, on-street rapid chargers provide direct current (DC) at a rate of 50kW. For these chargers, the cables are tethered to the charge point – just like at a traditional petrol station. The European standard connector for rapid-charging is the CCS (Combined Charging System) plug, which uses the same socket as the Type 2 fast charger as well as the two lower pins.

The other on-street charge socket available is known as CHAdeMO. This Japanese tethered connector provides up to 50kW DC rapid-charging, just like the CCS, via a dedicated socket. While this connector type is becoming less common for new infrastructure installations, there remains a wide network of existing charging points that use this format, in fact as of August 2017 50% of all rapid-charge points currently utilise a CHAdeMO connector (source: Zap-Map).​

10. Is it safe to leave my VN5 plugged in charging overnight, even when the battery is fully charged?

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Yes it's perfectly safe. Home charging using a dedicated 7kW wall box is the most common and recommended method for charging an electric vehicle. Not only is it the easiest way - simply plug in at night and wake up to a fully charged vehicle, but it's also the cheapest with a full charge costing around £3.

The battery in VN5 is monitored and managed by sophisticated on-board systems which, among their many other functions, continually speak to the charge point when it's plugged in to ensure the rate of charging and discharging is carefully controlled - so basically, when the battery is full, it stops receiving charge. For this reason, it's also perfectly safe to leave your EV plugged in charging if you go on holiday. In fact, we recommend you do so, that way the 12V battery is also fully charged upon return.​

11. Is there any reason why the petrol range-extender can’t be used to charge the battery?

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Charging the battery from the range-extender would lead to more cabs idling in the city. This not only increases emissions but is inefficient; it costs far more to convert petrol into electricity than it does to plug-in, so it’s better to use petrol only as much as is necessary and to recharge the battery by plugging in when possible. The different drive modes allow you to deploy your electric power as suits your working day.

This is made possible because the VN5's battery and charging system allow for better electric-only range and faster, more flexible re-charging. The range-extender provides additional peace of mind with a total electrically driven range of 316 miles before the need to recharge or refill.​

12. What should I do if an on-street charge point isn't working?

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We encourage drivers to notify the network operators directly in these situations using the contact information on the charge point, in many cases they can resolve issues quickly remotely. Please feel free to make LEVC aware and we will also notify the network operator.​

13. Can I charge at the older CHAdeMO charge points?

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VN5 is equipped with a fast, flexible charging system which incorporates AC ‘fast’ charging at up to 22kW and DC ‘rapid’ charging at up to 50kW, with the European-standard CCS (Combined Charging System) socket type fitted as standard. To provide 100% coverage of the UK charging network, we also offer an additional rapid charge socket, compatible with the Japanese CHAdeMO standard. While the majority of rapid charge posts are fitted with both types of lead and they provide the same function, some older posts may feature only the CHAdeMO connector. For drivers living or operating close to one of these locations, the additional compatibility allows them to take full advantage of the local charge point.

14. Can VN5 use the 350 kW chargers?

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Although a few sites are able to offer higher public charging rates, the current standard for DC rapid charging across the UK and Europe is 50kW and we have optimised VN5 to re-charge from these posts. This means both vehicles are able to regulate the energy available from the charge post to ensure the maximum level of charge possible during the charge cycle.

15. Can I charge my VN5 in the rain?

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Yes, the charging plugs feature several layers of in built protection which means it's perfectly safe to plug your EV in when it's raining. As a general tip, avoid pointing the connector up towards the downfall.​

16. What should I do if an EV is plugged in to a charge point, they’re done charging but don’t move along?

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If drivers feel a charge point has been used for an excessive period of time we recommend notifying the charge point operator, local authority, or local transport body responsible for that particular charging network. Contact details are generally displayed on either signage, the charge point itself or online. We encourage drivers where possible to provide relevant supporting evidence that the same EV has overstayed the allowed period.

LEVC regularly meets with legislators, local authorities and network operators across the UK and have highlighted the need for enforcement of charge points. This is something that is being reviewed locally and some areas are introducing enforcement policies.​

17. How much will a 'Smart' Charger cost and what are the benefits of having one?

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BP Chargemaster are LEVC’s existing home charging partner and the commercial offering for a ‘Smart’ Home Charger as of July 1st 2019 will be £359 (incl. VAT).

EO Charging are LEVC's home charging partner in Scotland, and with the additional grant available to Scottish drivers this will mean a standard installation will be £59.

'Smart’ charging technology is more expensive than a simple ‘plug and go’, however, with their innovative features will help reduce VN5 home charging costs for drivers in the long-term.

‘Smart’ Home Chargers provide drivers with many benefits including:

The ability to schedule home charging eventsThis can help drivers save money by encouraging off-peak charging when tariffs are lower
The ability to separate EV charging from home energy consumptionMaking it easier for the reporting of energy as business expense

18. Which 'Smart' home chargers can I use?

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LEVC spoke with a range of suppliers that had successfully gone through the OLEV approval process and had also tested their products against our EVs to ensure charging compatibility.

LEVC selected suppliers based on the quality of product, their experience in the market, ability, transparency of offer, and customer service. We have also factored in the added value the suppliers offer such as access to public and taxi dedicated charging networks and future propositions.

BP Chargemaster and EO Charging are LEVC's designated home charging partners. ​

19. How can I get an on-street charger installed near my house?

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There are several options we recommend to drivers.

You can register your interest with Ubitricity who retrofit existing street lights with EV charging facilities, or submit a recommendation on PowerMyStreet, who offer Londoners the chance to nominate their preferred location for new on-street charge points. Alternatively, you can speak to your local council to see what provisions they have for residents who are interested in getting an on-street charger.

Please note, every local authority has its own legislations in terms of procurement and installation of on-street EV charge points in residential areas. Thus, LEVC is unable to guarantee any possible installation options or timelines.

20. What is self-charging and is VN5 a self-charging electric vehicle?

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The term ‘self-charging’ is a marketing phrase used to describe a conventional parallel hybrid drivetrain – i.e. one which cannot be plugged in to charge. VN5 is a range-extended electric vehicle which combine the environmental and economic advantages of a plug-in battery electric vehicle, with the flexibility of a conventional or hybrid one.

Recharging an electric vehicle using mains electricity is far more efficient, more environmentally-friendly (particularly when that energy is generated sustainable) and much more cost effective. By contrast, converting expensive (and heavily-taxed) petrol into electricity results in far higher fuel costs.

The range-extender, fitted as standard, can maintain the charge in the battery as required to provide complete operational flexibility. It allows the driver to preserve electric range for use later in the shift, or to continue operating the vehicle once the charge is depleted until it is possible or convenient to stop and plug-in.​

Range

1. Would it save much battery if you turned the lights and radio off during the day?

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The saving would be so minimal it would be unnoticeable. Just as in a conventional petrol or diesel vehicle, by having the lights on you wouldn't notice a change in fuel mpg, the same is true here with VN5 and battery range.

2. Is it the case that if the range-extender is turned on inside the Low Emission Zone that your vehicle will attract a charge?

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Not necessarily. Typically a Low Emission Zone will consist of a charge for any vehicle which does not reach a minimum standard for emissions to enter this zone. As VN5 meets the required emission standards in London, it is exempt from the scheme or is subject to a 100% discount if a charge in inadvertently applied.

3. How was the official electric range calculated? Was it on a straight run, with or without traffic, lights and heating on?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test is the official standard all European car manufacturers are obliged to follow when publishing range, fuel economy and emissions data. The tests are intended to provide repeatable, consistent figures for comparison and are therefore generally performed on a dynamometer. 

However, it is widely recognised that these can be difficult to achieve in ‘real-world’ driving. As a result of this, we state the official electric-only range of VN5 is 60.9 miles.

4. An WLTP official published range of over 60 miles? But the Tesla can do 200+ miles.

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most commercial vehicle operator's daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. Bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of the electric taxi. There are no plans to change the batteries used in VN5.

5. Does the petrol range-extender connect to the electric motor or does it charge the batteries to operate the electric motor?

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VN5 is powered by an electric motor that drives the rear wheels, the range-extender supports the electric motor to remove any range-anxiety. There is no mechanical connection between the range-extender & the wheels, it is there to maintain the charge in the battery pack if & when required.

6. Why does the electric range differ if I use an on-street rapid charger and my 7kW home charger?

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This is because the range forecast is based on the temperature of the battery and a warmer battery operates more efficiently. When charging on-street the battery is warmer, because the vehicle has been in use. When charging at home, set the pre-conditioning to help everything warm up before you hit the road to maximise your range. Please see our Pre Conditioning Guide available here.

7. Is the Pure Electric range effected by cold weather conditions?

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The published electric range figures are determined by the official test procedures and, as with official fuel economy data, LEVC are legally required to communicate these figures. The tests are conducted in laboratory conditions and are designed primarily to provide a consistent comparison between different vehicle models. Efficiency will vary during real-world driving due to the huge number of variables involved; such as driver behaviour, ambient temperature, traffic conditions, equipment used, number of passengers on-board and so on.

A new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption and range was introduced for all vehicle manufacturers in September 2018, which means you will see different figures shown for the same vehicle. The WLTP test (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) replaces the NEDC standard that has been used since 1992 and is designed to produce figures more representative of real-world driving. If you’d like to know more about the new WLTP test, more information can be found at www.wltpfacts.eu.

Because we recognise that the official range can be difficult to achieve, we have always used real-world data to calculate the fuel savings possible and instead we use this number in all of our Marketing material. The real-world average range of 64 miles has been determined by monitoring the performance of several drivers over many months. In the summer months it is possible to achieve better than this figure and conversely in the winter the figure will be lower. Temperature affects the efficiency of all vehicles, but affects electric vehicles in particular as both the batteries and occupants prefer to be at a comfortable temperature and there is no ‘free’ heat source as in an internal combustion vehicle. There are ways of reducing energy consumption, particularly during cold weather; why not watch our Driving Tips Video Guide to learn more here.

While the electric-only range is important for many reasons, it is not the best measure of overall efficiency. VN5 features a range-extender, so not only can it operate as a pure electric vehicle, it provides the flexibility and peace of mind of a conventional powertrain, but with greater efficiency. If the battery is depleted and it is not convenient to recharge, operating on the range-extender returns fuel economy more than 25% better than our previous TX4 Euro 6 model, with significantly lower tailpipe emissions. Through a combination of re-charging the battery when convenient and operating on petrol power when it is not, we would still expect drivers to achieve significant fuel savings over their previous diesel vehicle.

8. I see a new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption & range has been introduced, how does this effect VN5?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test replaces the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) for all vehicle manufacturers. The test is designed to provide official figures closer to what drivers could achieve in the real-world, but the main purpose is still to enable comparisons between different vehicles.

Technology

1. If operating in Pure EV mode, when the range reaches zero will VN5 automatically switch to a different drive mode to engage the range-extender?

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​When operating in Smart mode your electric vehicle will automatically activate the range-extender before the range reaches zero. In Pure EV it will not, instead the vehicle will prompt the driver to change drive mode before the range reaches zero and then limit the power delivery. If these prompts are ignored the vehicle will ultimately stop. When the range reaches zero, in order to get the van started again the driver will need to select a different drive mode.

2. Is it possible to download or add 3rd party “apps” - such as the Zap Map charge point locator - to the touch screen console in VN5?

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To protect the interface we control what can be installed, as untested apps can interfere with the existing functions. At this moment in time 3rd party apps from the App Store or Google Store aren't compatible with the touch screen console. However there is ample space on the accessory bar, and complimentary on-board Wi-Fi, which allows drivers to attach a tablet and/or mobile phone which could run 3rd party apps such as Zap-Map or Android Auto.

3. Why is the petrol range-extender fitted with a turbo?

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The turbo helps improve the efficiency and durability of the engine.

4. Is it true the petrol range-extender is governed by a sensor that if you went in to certain places in London they will be able to stop it from working until you're out of that area?

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Unlike other European cities we're working with, there is currently no geo-fencing requirement in London. However if TfL were to introduce this requirement, we have a supplier in place who we'll work with to fit the necessary on-board software.

5. I sometimes hear the fan on when the engine is off or whilst on charge, is this normal?

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​Just as in diesel or petrol vehicles with traditional combustion engines, it's normal for the fan to run for a short while after the vehicle has shut down. Since the engine has stopped running it no longer circulates coolant to cool it down, therefore the fan kicks in to cool the necessary components - you'd definitely expect to hear in during the warmer summer months. It's also worth noting that VN5 will also run the fans as required while plugged in to charge, for the same reason.

6. Does the odometer on the display show a total distance travelled on electric & petrol, if so can they be shown separately?

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Currently the odometer shows a combination of the distance travelled on electric and petrol. We aim to be very transparent with our new vehicle and we're continually looking for ways to share more information with drivers, which is why we're looking at how to separate this data in the future.

7. If I left my VN5 unused for a week will it still start?

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​Yes that isn't a problem, just like any other vehicle VN5 relies on a 12V battery to start the system.

8. Is VN5 classed as a Zero Emission Capable vehicle?

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TfL classify a zero emissions capable taxi as one with an official combined CO2 output of less than 50g, which can travel at least 30 miles on electric only. VN5 comfortably exceed these requirements with remarkably low CO2 emissions.

9. Does the fuel cut off switch at the boot disable the vehicle completely?

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No, the fuel cut off switch simply stops the petrol range-extender from working, you can still operate in Pure EV mode. The switch is part of TfL Conditions of Fitness but isn't really necessary on newer vehicles with more sophisticated engine safety precautions.

10. What type of electric vehicle is VN5?

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VN5 is a range-extended electric vehicle. This means that it is always driven electrically by a motor and powered by a battery.

Because the nature of a commercial vehicle operator's work is varied and unpredictable by its nature, both also have a small petrol range-extender fitted. This is not connected to the wheels and cannot drive the vehicle as an engine, it acts as a generator to send electrical energy to the battery. It is this technology which overcomes the range anxiety faced by many operators and gives the confidence to consider an ultra-low emissions vehicle.

As well as emitting none of the harmful particulates associated with a diesel engine, the combined CO2 emissions on the official WLTP drive cycle, which includes use of the range-extender, is between 19 and 21 g/km respectively. 

11. How do I pre-warm/pre-cool my VN5 using mains electricity rather than taking energy from the drive battery?

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In an electric vehicle, the cabin temperature is maintained electrically using energy from the drive battery.

When charging your VN5, whether overnight at home or on-street, you can set a ‘Parking Climate’ timer to prewarm or pre-cool the cabin using the mains electricity. This feature automatically activates the climate control system to restore the last set temperature and fan speed. This means energy isn’t taken from the battery to do the same job after you’ve driven away, helping to preserve your electric range…plus, you get to climb into a vehicle that’s just the way you like it.

12. Some drivers have described a feeling of ‘surging forward’ while slowing down. Does this indicate a fault with the vehicle?

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This sensation is a characteristic of the way the braking system operates, it does not affect the braking performance of the vehicle, or indicate a fault with the vehicle. 

Antilock Braking Systems (ABS) use sensors to identify if a wheel is beginning to rotate more slowly than expected during braking, indicating a loss of grip that will lead to the wheel ‘locking up’. Hydraulic valves reduce the braking effort on the affected wheels, preventing them from skidding and allowing the driver to maintain control.

TX features regenerative braking, recovering energy that would usually be lost while slowing down to recharge the drive battery. The regeneration generates drag on the rear wheels as the vehicle gradually slows while coasting and up to around 10% of brake pedal effort.

When wheel slip is identified, the system must react by deactivating the regeneration to reduce the drag on the rear wheels. This could be the result of a heavy braking event, slippery conditions or a change of road surface (such as ironworks). Disengaging the regenerative braking has the effect of reducing the rate of deceleration; this can give the feeling of vehicle surging forward and drivers typically react to this sensation by applying the brake pedal harder. In many cases, the affected wheel has already begun to rotate normally, and the vehicle reacts to the new input by slowing more rapidly.

This sensation only occurs at low speeds and under light braking, where the vehicle is being slowed by the regeneration. In emergency braking events, most of the braking effort is already being achieved using the hydraulic wheel brakes and so the sensation of the ABS working in the conventional way is more familiar.

Working in conjunction with the ABS system, Autonomous Emergency Braking monitors the road ahead, ready to react if an imminent collision is detected. The system operates more quickly and effectively than most humans can and while antilock braking systems normally decrease stopping distances, on very slippery surfaces, such as gravel or snow, ABS may actually increase the overall braking distance, but allow the driver to maintain steering control.

13. Does VN5 have a catalytic converter?

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Yes it does – it’s just one of the emissions-reducing technologies utilised by our highly-efficient range-extender, which contributes to its combined CO2 emissions (on the WLTP cycle) of just 19 and 21g/km respectively, which assumes some use of the petrol range-extender.

14. Can I adjust the volume of the road traffic announcements?

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Yes. All sounds can be adjusted in the settings of your vehicle.

Find the setting on your touch screen by clicking: Settings > Sound > System Volumes.

All the information regarding the different features of VN5 and more instructions are available on the Operator App, which can be downloaded for free.


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - IOS


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - ANDROID

Safety & Security

1. How strong is the body structure?

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Pound for pound, Aluminium absorbs twice as much energy as mild-steel, effectively dissipating the forces experienced in a crash. We use hot-cured adhesive to bond our body structure together, a process more than twice as strong as welding that allows long, consistent contact across the entire joint. Similar technology has been used successfully in aerospace and sports cars for over 20 years. Is the panoramic roof safe? The panoramic roof creates a light and breezy atmosphere in the passenger compartment and gives passengers a new perspective on the city.

The thick, laminated glass is similar to that used for the windscreen. It contains a special tinting layer that block 95% of emitted light energy entering the cabin, helping to keep the interior at a comfortable temperature. Due to its location, it is also far less susceptible to damage than a windscreen - and if the worse should happen it is far quicker and easier to replace than a traditional roof panel, minimising repair costs.

2.What about the potential for battery theft?

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​As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

3. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true?

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​All vehicles manufactured in the UK have to meet strict regulations around electromagnetic radiation levels in order to be sold around Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency oversee these tests in the UK, and our cab passed these with flying colours. In addition, our battery technology has been used in other Geely group vehicles including Volvo Cars, with owners covering millions upon millions of miles.

4. Does VN5 have Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS)?

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​One of the many advantages of electric propulsion is the removal of engine noise. However, we have become accustomed to using the sound of an engine as warning of an approaching vehicle; this is particularly true of vulnerable road users and service animals.

There is currently no legislation in force requiring electric vehicles to generate an artificial noise. Noise generating systems that operate at different vehicle speeds, volumes or with differing types of sound are potentially confusing to other road users. It is also argued that such a noise could negate the noise pollution benefits of an electric vehicle. To resolve these challenges, a common standard is currently being developed. New legislation requiring a pedestrian warning sound, known as AVAS, comes into force on 1st July 2019 for newly type-approved vehicles (i.e. the launch of an all-new vehicle). From 1st July 2021 the legislation extends to all newly registered vehicles. We are therefore developing an AVAS system in-line with this legislation and aim to introduce it at the earliest opportunity.

VN5 is fitted with a sophisticated active safety system called Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). This system monitors the road ahead using cameras and radar sensors and if a vulnerable road user is at risk, the vehicle will apply the brakes automatically to avoid a collision. A range of additional driver aids, such as parking sensors and a rear camera, are also available to help drivers take extra care when manoeuvring in busy congested areas.

5. Is there a way to turn off the Automatic Emergency Breaking (AEB)?

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The AEB is an active safety feature designed to protect drivers and other road users; it has been proven to help improve road safety and reduce accident rates - which will further reduce insurance costs. For these reasons it can't be turned off. Drivers can however adjust the volume of the audio warning. For instructions on how to do this, refer to our free Operator App, which can be downloaded here:


DOWNLOAD USER GUIDE


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - IOS


DOWNLOAD TX OPERATOR APP - ANDROID

6. How are occupants protected from Air Pollution?

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​Working on busy streets for long hours means commercial vehicle operators are one of the most at-risk groups for exposure to poor air-quality and the resulting long-term health impacts. While cities move towards more sustainable transport, helped by LEVC's eCity electric drivetrain, today’s drivers spend much of their day behind the tailpipe of the vehicle ahead.

The cabin air filter fitted to VN5 features an extra-large surface area, ensuring excellent airflow while capturing pollen, fine particles and impurities to prevent contaminants from entering the vehicle’s interior. The electronic air pollution sensor even monitors the quality of the air flowing to the interior vents and automatically closes the intake if high levels of pollution are detected; protecting all occupants from the harmful effects of Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Oxide and ground level Ozone, so you can breathe-easy.

When air pollution is detected and all doors and windows are closed, the exterior intake is closed and the ‘Cleanzone’ indicator on the touchscreen changes from white to blue. Re-circulation turns off automatically after 20 minutes to prevent Carbon Dioxide build up inside the cabin.

Quality

1. What quality assurances take place?

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Our Customer Acceptance Team Area work from a dedicated Quality Centre within our Ansty factory. Here they verify that every vehicle has been built to process and is fault free before leaving the facility. They have access to the very latest testing facilities such as a wheel and headlight alignment rig, rolling-road, ‘squeak and rattle’ test track, ‘monsoon’ water test, sophisticated electrical test equipment, vehicle lifts and high-intensity lighting.

2. How can you guarantee the quality of the vehicle?

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VN5 has been designed and built from the ground up, using the latest technology by a hugely-experienced team of experts recruited from across the automotive industry and with the benefit of our unrivalled experience in the taxi trade. Our brand new, purpose-built facility in Ansty has been constructed with the same approach, with the best equipment, processes and systems dedicated to ensuring unrivalled quality. The electric powertrain in both VN5 has undergone the most extensive testing and development we’ve ever undertaken.

3. How can I get extra protection for my VN5?

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Our warranty demonstrates our confidence in the durability of this vehicle and is comparable with the best in the industry. We recognise that some customers require even greater peace of mind, so we're able to offer an extended warranty at an affordable price.

Design & Development

1. Why are certain features optional and not standard?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

2. What is VN5 made of? Does it contain cadmium metal?

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VN5 features an aluminium chassis bonded with incredibly strong adhesives, and is fully anodised, enhancing the vehicle’s structural strength whilst also improving efficiency and extending its range. The use of aluminium, a material 30% lighter than conventional steel, is inspired by the lightweight chassis structures of British sports cars and makes the new VN5’s body stronger and lighter. The use of aluminium, which is 100% recyclable, boosts the VN5’s green credentials even further.

The VN5's body panels have been designed for easy removal and repair, making maintenance quicker and easier. The composite materials used - which contain no cadmium metal - also mean that they already have corrosion resistance built-in.

Comfort and Convenience

1. How do I pair my phone via Bluetooth & enable the messaging function?

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It’s easy to enable the messaging function in your electric vehicle. Simply, pair your device with your vehicle ('My Van') via Bluetooth in the normal way. Make sure that 'Messages' in the list of displayed options is ticked. Your phone may prompt you to allow access to your text messages or you can enable this setting in the 'My Van’ Bluetooth connection settings. One paired, switch off your ignition. When you re-start your EV, the phone will reconnect and the new Bluetooth setting set will take effect.

Now, you will be notified when you receive a new message and VN5 can read it to you at the tap of button. You can also access existing messages and listen to them again. What is more, this function allows you to send message to a contact or reply to a message when the vehicle is stationary, and it is safe to do so.

2. How often should you have the aircon regassed?

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Air-conditioning refrigerant isn’t a service item; if used regularly (to ensure the seals are kept lubricated) the air-con should maintain pressure for many years. If you have noticed a deterioration in air-conditioning performance, we suggest you contact your LEVC dealer who will be able to investigate if there is an issue with any of the components in the heating and ventilation system.

TX

Affordability

1. Is the TX/VN5 affordable?

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Electricity is considerably cheaper than diesel, so drivers can expect to save up to £100 per week on fuel costs by adopting new, electric eCity technology. The PCP finance deal for the VN5 ensures an affordable weekly payment, with no separate battery lease, and a comprehensive warranty package provides peace of mind. 

2. How much will it cost to maintain?

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The motor which propels TX and VN5 has very few serviceable parts and the range-extender only operates as necessary. This means there is far less mechanical wear, allowing us to extend the service intervals compared to a traditional diesel engine and therefore reduce the cost.

Our Aftersales partner Unipart will continue to supply spare parts, with 7,000 references provided in an easy to use catalogue. The LEVC approved service network are provided with the necessary training, tools and technical documentation to ensure a professional and efficient service, with a quick turnaround and minimal downtime.

3. Do the option packs depreciate in value?

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Yes, they do. Just as the vehicle itself does, the packs and the features within them also depreciate in value over time. Our residual value forecasting is supplied by CAP HPI, the market leading data business for the automotive industry.

4. Why are some features/items standard and others are optional?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

5. When is the first MOT due on a new TX/VN5?

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​On a brand new TX/VN5 the first MOT is due after 12 months and then every 6 months thereafter.

6. If I only wanted to operate TX/VN5 using the range-extender, would this invalidate the warranty?

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​No, you're free to operate the vehicle as you wish. Naturally, we wouldn't recommend this; it would completely negate the economic and environmental benefits of driving using electrical energy.

Battery

1. Has the battery got to be like on empty before you charge it?

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You can charge the battery to full capacity in anyway you choose to, the battery does not need to be depleted to recharge. However, in order to get the most out of your vehicle we recommend you use every drop of energy available in the battery before recharging. For more information view our Driving Tips.​


View TX Driving tips

2. Will I need to replace the battery, if so how much would it cost?

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The battery in TX/VN5 incorporates state of the art cell technology. It is designed to last the life of the vehicle, 15 years+, and the results of our rigorous testing and development programme are exceeding our expectations. The battery is covered by a 5-year warranty for TX and 8-year warranty for VN5 to provide drivers with the re-assurance they need over the initial finance period. This level of cover for a commercial EV is industry leading. Small improvements to battery technology will be out-paced by the growing availability of rapid charging infrastructure, so for the mid-term we don’t anticipate developing any significant improvements to the electric range. As with all developing technologies, prices drop over time. For that reason, we can't speculate on what the cost of replacing the battery would be in 5, 10 or even 15 years’ time.

3. Does the battery catch fire in a crash?

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The battery in our electric vehicles is protected against extreme heat by a tough metal casing. In an event of an accident, the automatic safety systems will completely disable all high voltage hazards in under a second of an impact being detected, preventing any electrical fault from creating a risk of fire.

4. Is the high voltage battery safe?

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The high voltage control system monitors the electrical circuits hundreds of times every second to check all of the high voltage components, the electrical connectivity and the connector sealing, are all within safe-working parameters. If any possible fault is detected, such as unintended tampering, the system is shut down to prevent injury.

5. What’s the battery capacity in TX/VN5, how much is usable, & why?

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The drive battery has been developed in conjunction with LG Chem, the world’s largest automotive battery manufacturer. The gross capacity of the battery is 31kWh and around three-quarters of this is what’s known as ‘usable energy’. This means that a full charge, from 100% down to 0% on the battery charge indicator, represents 23 kWh of energy. Our article about the Battery Capacity in TX/VN5 explains more, click here to learn more.

6. What about the potential for battery theft?

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As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

7. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true and am I safe?

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Electro-magnetic radiation is all around us, generated by electricity cables, radio and television signals, microwave ovens and mobile phones to name just a few. Like any product, all new vehicles have to meet strict regulations around radiation levels in order to be sold in Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) oversee these tests in the UK and our cab passed these with flying colours. 

Because our drivers spend much of their working day in close proximity to the battery, LEVC considered it necessary to gain additional specialist accreditation. The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) have developed stringent guidelines designed to protect against any adverse health effects as a result of frequent long-term exposure to electric and magnetic fields.

8. How do you manage your battery sourcing and disposal?

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LEVC are committed to building a taxi that meets the highest sustainability standards. All procurement contracts make clear our commitment to ethical procurement and the protection of human rights. Our supplier, LG Chem has a responsible mineral sourcing policy, and have a clear process in place for auditing their supply chain. They are also a member of the OECD’s Responsible Cobalt Initiative which seeks to take collective action to address the social and environmental risks of cobalt sourcing. We have worked to deliver an extremely robust battery which is intended to last the full 15 year lifespan of the vehicle. In addition, we are working with potential partners on a longer term sustainability solution and are hoping to make an announcement in due course.

9. What's the 12 V battery for and how is it used?

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Just like a conventional vehicle, TX/VN5 relies on a small 12 V battery to run the ancillary systems when the vehicle is switched off, as well as to 'start' the vehicle (in this case to activate the high voltage systems). On-board systems monitor the level of charge in this battery to protect it from going flat, but it is still possible to drain the charge. This may be caused by, for example, improper fitment of third party equipment or a taxi that is left unused for extended periods. Again however, just like a conventional vehicle, the TX/VN5 can be connected to a battery charger or jump started using the remote terminals under the bonnet. If the vehicle is completely flat and the remote door locking is inoperable, a manual key is housed within the key fob and can be used in a hidden door lock to open the doors. Once restarted (or connected to a charge point) the charge in the high voltage battery is used to replenish the 12 V battery.

10. Why does TX/VN5 feature a range-extender, why isn’t it all electric?

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most taxi driver’s daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. However, in a commercial vehicle, bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of our vehicles. TX/VN5 is backed up by a petrol range-extender to reduce range-anxiety and provide greater usability and flexibility.

11. What happens to old battery packs once they come out of our electric vehicles?

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​Recyclability plays an important part in LEVC’s product development strategy, with more than 95% of the materials in TX/VN5 classified as recyclable or recoverable at the end of the vehicle’s life. 

While the usable capacity of all batteries reduces over time, the drive battery developed for TX/VN5 has been designed to last the life of the vehicle, retaining its performance and range reliably for many years.

Wider industry analysis* shows that batteries removed at the end of a hybrid or electric vehicle’s life typically retain around 80% of their original storage capacity - and this is in line with our own testing. While these batteries are not suitable for immediate re-use in the same application, it is possible to refurbish and recondition the battery. However, these used batteries are also ideally suited to ‘second life’ applications, where the remaining useful storage capacity is unrelated to original automotive requirement. One example of this is the growing market for domestic and commercial energy storage and LEVC is exploring ways to reuse TX/VN5 drive batteries in this way.

Regardless of the methods ultimately used, motor manufacturers remain responsible for the safe collection, recycling and disposal of all the drive battery components as part of ELV (End of Life) legislation. LEVC is committed to minimising TX/VN5’s environmental impact throughout the vehicle’s working life and into retirement.

Charging

1. How long will it take to charge the battery?

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Rapid charging points can recharge the TX/VN5 in just half an hour, meaning your vehicle could be charged in the time it takes to grab a cup of tea or bite of lunch. TfL have committed to installing 150 of these rapid chargers in London by the end of the year – whilst additional rapid chargers are being installed at petrol stations, shopping centres and airports around London.

The TX/VN5 boasts the most flexible on-board charging system on the market, allowing drivers to fully utilise all home and on street charging charge points. Typical full charge times are as follows:

Full charge in 3h45 (7kW)

Full charge in 1h15 (22kW) - 2h20 (11kW)

Full charge in 30mins (50kW)

2. Is there enough on-street charging infrastructure available?

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​There are currently 18,000+ charging points in the UK, with more being installed daily. LEVC are also working with local authorities and government regulators to install dedicated taxi infrastructure. For example, TFL promises to install 300 dedicated charge points by the end of 2019. There are a variety of apps, such as Zap-Map, which allow users to filter charge points by location, connector type and speed.

3. How much will it cost to charge TX/VN5?

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Whether you’re charging from home overnight, or using an on-street charging point, the cost will of course depend on the service provider. However, typically, a full recharge overnight at home shouldn’t cost you anymore than £3. And depending on the charge point and its location within London, you can expect to pay between £5 and £7.50 for a full charge.

There are of course, many factors that can affect fuel consumption, including driving style and even the weather. You can find our full list of driving tips and a video on how to optimise your fuel below.

At Home (7kW) - Costing around £3

Fast On-Street (11kW) Costing around £5

Rapid On-Street (50kW) - Costing around £7

4. How do I charge overnight?

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LEVC have a partnered with Chargemaster to provide a onestop solution for home-charging.

For those who do not have access to off-street parking, the On-street Residential Charge Point Scheme helps local authorities to support drivers with no access to off-street home charging.

5. How can I get a Home charge unit installed on my driveway?

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We have partnered with ChargeMaster, the leading suppliers of home charge units in the UK, to offer a one-stop solution for installation of your very own 7kW home charge unit; capable of charging the TX/VN5 in just 3 hours and 45 minutes overnight. More information, as well as an instructional video is available here.

6. Can TX/VN5 charge using the Tesla 120 kW charge points?

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The Tesla Superchargers are exclusive to Tesla vehicles, however TX/VN5 can maximise use of the available on-street charging infrastructure because of its market-leading charging capabilities - with access to slow (<7kW), fast (<22kW) & rapid (50kW) charging via different sockets.

7. Is the charging lead that comes with TX/VN5 fitted with a normal 3-pin plug?

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TX/VN5 come with Type 2 / CCS (the most common variety of charger). Although both electric vehicles can be charged using a domestic 3-pin socket we prefer drivers use a traditional wall box or charge post for a several reasons. Not only is the rate of charge much slower (typically 2.5kW), there is the risk of overloading circuits that are not designed for this type of use.

However for those drivers who wish to purchase a 3-pin plug your local dealer will be able to supply one for £320 ex. VAT.

8. What is the difference between the Type 2 / CCS & CHADdeMO socket on the vehicle, when do I use each one?

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The Type 2 plug (also known as ‘Mennekes’) is the most common variety of socket. A separate cable is usually attached to the charge point at one end and to the top portion of the CCS (Combined Charging System) socket on the TX/VN5.

Type 2 connectors provide ‘slow’ and ‘fast’ charging using mains power (AC). At home, a wall box can provide power up to 7kW. On-street this increases to between 7kW and 22kW, depending on the individual charge point. Thanks to its sophisticated on-board charging system, TX/VN5 is capable of charging at the maximum power provided by these posts. The charge point and taxi communicate with each other using a system known as ‘Mode 3’, to optimise the charging cycle.

To recharge in the shortest time possible, on-street rapid chargers provide direct current (DC) at a rate of 50kW. For these chargers, the cables are tethered to the charge point – just like at a traditional petrol station. The European standard connector for rapid-charging is the CCS (Combined Charging System) plug, which uses the same socket as the Type 2 fast charger as well as the two lower pins.

The other on-street charge socket available is known as CHAdeMO. This Japanese tethered connector provides up to 50kW DC rapid-charging, just like the CCS, via a dedicated socket. While this connector type is becoming less common for new infrastructure installations, there remains a wide network of existing charging points that use this format, in fact as of August 2017 50% of all rapid-charge points currently utilise a CHAdeMO connector (source: Zap-Map).

9. Is it safe to leave my TX/VN5 plugged in charging overnight, even when the battery is fully charged?

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Yes it's perfectly safe. Home charging using a dedicated 7kW wall box is the most common and recommended method for charging an electric vehicle. Not only is it the easiest way - simply plug in at night and wake up to a fully charged vehicle, but it's also the cheapest with a full charge costing around £3.

The battery in TX/VN5 is monitored and managed by sophisticated on-board systems which, among their many other functions, continually speak to the charge point when it's plugged in to ensure the rate of charging and discharging is carefully controlled - so basically, when the battery is full, it stops receiving charge. For this reason, it's also perfectly safe to leave your EV plugged in charging if you go on holiday. In fact, we recommend you do so, that way the 12V battery is also fully charged upon return.

10. Is there any reason why the petrol range-extender can’t be used to charge the battery?

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Charging the battery from the range-extender would lead to more cabs idling in the city. This not only increases emissions but is inefficient; it costs far more to convert petrol into electricity than it does to plug-in, so it’s better to use petrol only as much as is necessary and to recharge the battery by plugging in when possible. The different drive modes allow you to deploy your electric power as suits your working day.

This is made possible because the battery and charging system allow for better electric-only range and faster, more flexible re-charging. The range-extender provides additional peace of mind with a total electrically driven range of 316 miles before the need to recharge or refill.

11. What should I do if an on-street charge point isn't working?

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​We encourage drivers to notify the network operators directly in these situations using the contact information on the charge point, in many cases they can resolve issues quickly remotely. Please feel free to make LEVC aware and we will also notify the network operator.

12. Can I charge at the older CHAdeMO charge points?

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TX and VN5 are equipped with a fast, flexible charging system which incorporates AC ‘fast’ charging at up to 22kW and DC ‘rapid’ charging at up to 50kW, with the European-standard CCS (Combined Charging System) socket type fitted as standard. To provide 100% coverage of the UK charging network, we also offer an additional rapid charge socket, compatible with the Japanese CHAdeMO standard. While the majority of rapid charge posts are fitted with both types of lead and they provide the same function, some older posts may feature only the CHAdeMO connector. For drivers living or operating close to one of these locations, the additional compatibility allows them to take full advantage of the local charge point.

13. Can TX/VN5 use the 350 kW chargers?

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Although a few sites are able to offer higher public charging rates, the current standard for DC rapid charging across the UK and Europe is 50kW and we have optimised TX and VN5 to re-charge from these posts. This means both vehicles are able to regulate the energy available from the charge post to ensure the maximum level of charge possible during the charge cycle.

14. Can I charge my electric vehicle (TX/VN5) in the rain?

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Yes the charging plugs feature several layers of in built protection which means it's perfectly safe to plug your EV in when it's raining. As a general tip, avoid pointing the connector up towards the downfall.

15. What should I do if an EV is plugged in to a charge point, they’re done charging but don’t move along?

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If drivers feel a charge point has been used for an excessive period of time we recommend notifying the charge point operator, local authority, or local transport body responsible for that particular charging network – particularly dedicated taxi charge points. Contact details are generally displayed on either signage, the charge point itself or online. We encourage drivers where possible to provide relevant supporting evidence that the same EV has overstayed the allowed period.

LEVC regularly meets with legislators, local authorities and network operators across the UK and have highlighted the need for enforcement of charge points. This is something that is being reviewed locally and some areas are introducing enforcement policies.

16. How much will a 'Smart' Charger cost and what are the benefits of having one?

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BP Chargemaster are LEVC’s existing home charging partner and the commercial offering for a ‘Smart’ Home Charger as of July 1st 2019 will be £359 (incl. VAT).

EO Charging are LEVC's home charging partner in Scotland, and with the additional grant available to Scottish drivers this will mean a standard installation will be £59.

'Smart’ charging technology is more expensive than a simple ‘plug and go’, however, with their innovative features will help reduce TX home charging costs for drivers in the long-term.

‘Smart’ Home Chargers provide drivers with many benefits including:


The ability to schedule home charging eventsThis can help drivers save money by encouraging off-peak charging when tariffs are lower
The ability to separate EV charging from home energy consumptionMaking it easier for the reporting of energy as business expense


17. Which 'Smart' home chargers can I use?

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LEVC spoke with a range of suppliers that had successfully gone through the OLEV approval process and had also tested their products against TX to ensure charging compatibility.

LEVC selected suppliers based on the quality of product, their experience in the market, ability, transparency of offer, and customer service. We have also factored in the added value the suppliers offer such as access to public and taxi dedicated charging networks and future propositions.

BP Chargemaster and EO Charging are LEVC's designated home charging partners.

18. How can I get an on-street charger installed near my house?

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There are several options we recommend to drivers.

You can register your interest with Ubitricity who retrofit existing street lights with EV charging facilities, or submit a recommendation on PowerMyStreet, who offer Londoners the chance to nominate their preferred location for new on-street charge points. Alternatively, you can speak to your local council to see what provisions they have for residents who are interested in getting an on-street charger.

Please note, every local authority has its own legislations in terms of procurement and installation of on-street EV charge points in residential areas. Thus, LEVC is unable to guarantee any possible installation options or timelines.

19. What is self-charging and is TX/VN5 a self-charging electric vehicle?

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The term ‘self-charging’ is a marketing phrase used to describe a conventional parallel hybrid drivetrain – i.e. one which cannot be plugged in to charge. TX and VN5 are range-extended electric vehicles which combine the environmental and economic advantages of a plug-in battery electric vehicle, with the flexibility of a conventional or hybrid one.

Recharging an electric vehicle using mains electricity is far more efficient, more environmentally-friendly (particularly when that energy is generated sustainable) and much more cost effective. By contrast, converting expensive (and heavily-taxed) petrol into electricity results in far higher fuel costs.

The range-extender, fitted as standard, can maintain the charge in the battery as required to provide complete operational flexibility. It allows the driver to preserve electric range for use later in the shift, or to continue operating the vehicle once the charge is depleted until it is possible or convenient to stop and plug-in.

Range

1. Would it save much battery if you turned the lights and radio off during the day?

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The saving would be so minimal it would be unnoticeable. Just as in a conventional petrol or diesel vehicle, by having the lights on you wouldn't notice a change in fuel mpg, the same is true here with TX/VN5 and battery range.

2. Is it the case that if the range-extender is turned on inside the Low Emission Zone that your vehicle will attract a charge?

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Not necessarily. Typically a Low Emission Zone will consist of a charge for any vehicle which does not reach a minimum standard for emissions to enter this zone. As TX and VN5 meet the required emission standards in London, it is exempt from the scheme or is subject to a 100% discount if a charge in inadvertently applied.

3. How was the official electric range calculated? Was it on a straight run, with or without traffic, lights and heating on?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test is the official standard all European car manufacturers are obliged to follow when publishing range, fuel economy and emissions data. The tests are intended to provide repeatable, consistent figures for comparison and are therefore generally performed on a dynamometer.

However, it is widely recognised that these can be difficult to achieve in ‘real-world’ driving. As a result of this, we state the official electric-only range of TX and VN5 is 62 and 61 miles respectively.

4. An WLTP official published range of over 60 miles? But the Tesla can do 200+ miles.

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Our battery has been chosen because it is an appropriate size to cover most commercial vehicle operator's daily usage. Bigger batteries are required in high-performance passenger vehicles to ensure adequate real-world range is maintained when the power available is utilised. Bigger batteries mean more cost and more weight, reducing the efficiency and running cost advantages of TX/VN5. There are no plans to change the batteries used in TX/VN5.

5. I travel 60-70 miles per day - will the TX/VN5 be able to cope?

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Absolutely, a recent feasibility study carried out by our Manchester dealership showed that over 70% of taxi drivers within the region travelled approximately 70 miles on their average working day. That means that for most of Manchester’s drivers, an overnight charge would enable them to carry out almost all their working day on pure electric power, if they chose to do so. With the backup of the petrol generator adding almost 300 miles, nobody travelling this distance needs suffer from range-anxiety.

6. Does the petrol range-extender connect to the electric motor or does it charge the batteries to operate the electric motor?

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TX and VN5 are powered by an electric motor that drives the rear wheels, the range-extender supports the electric motor to remove any range-anxiety. There is no mechanical connection between the range-extender & the wheels, it is there to maintain the charge in the battery pack if & when required.

7. Why does the electric range differ if I use an on-street rapid charger and my 7kW home charger?

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This is because the range forecast is based on the temperature of the battery and a warmer battery operates more efficiently. When charging on-street the battery is warmer, because the vehicle has been in use. When charging at home, set the pre-conditioning to help everything warm up before you hit the road to maximise your range. Please see our Pre Conditioning Guide available here.

8. Is the Pure Electric range effected by cold weather conditions?

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The published electric range figures are determined by the official test procedures and, as with official fuel economy data, LEVC are legally required to communicate these figures. The tests are conducted in laboratory conditions and are designed primarily to provide a consistent comparison between different vehicle models. Efficiency will vary during real-world driving due to the huge number of variables involved; such as driver behaviour, ambient temperature, traffic conditions, equipment used, number of passengers on-board and so on. 

A new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption and range was introduced for all vehicle manufacturers in September 2018, which means you will see different figures shown for the same vehicle. The WLTP test (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) replaces the NEDC standard that has been used since 1992 and is designed to produce figures more representative of real-world driving. If you’d like to know more about the new WLTP test, more information can be found at www.wltpfacts.eu.

Because we recognise that the official range can be difficult to achieve, we have always used real-world data to calculate the fuel savings possible and instead we use this number in all of our Marketing material. The real-world average range of 64 miles has been determined by monitoring the performance of several drivers over many months. In the summer months it is possible to achieve better than this figure and conversely in the winter the figure will be lower. Temperature affects the efficiency of all vehicles, but affects electric vehicles in particular as both the batteries and occupants prefer to be at a comfortable temperature and there is no ‘free’ heat source as in an internal combustion vehicle. There are ways of reducing energy consumption, particularly during cold weather; why not watch our Driving Tips Video Guide to learn more - www.levc.com/driving-tips.

While the electric-only range is important for many reasons, it is not the best measure of overall efficiency. TX and VN5 feature a range-extender, so not only can it operate as a pure electric vehicle, it provides the flexibility and peace of mind of a conventional powertrain, but with greater efficiency. If the battery is depleted and it is not convenient to recharge, operating on the range-extender returns fuel economy more than 25% better than our previous TX4 Euro 6 model, with significantly lower tailpipe emissions. Through a combination of re-charging the battery when convenient and operating on petrol power when it is not, we would still expect drivers to achieve significant fuel savings over their previous diesel cab.

9. I see a new standard for measuring emissions, energy consumption & range has been introduced, how does this effect TX/VN5?

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The WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) test replaces the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) for all vehicle manufacturers. The test is designed to provide official figures closer to what drivers could achieve in the real-world, but the main purpose is still to enable comparisons between different vehicles.

Technology

1. If operating in Pure EV mode, when the range reaches zero will TX/VN5 automatically switch to a different drive mode to engage the range-extender?

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​When operating in Smart mode your electric vehicle will automatically activate the range-extender before the range reaches zero. In Pure EV it will not, instead the vehicle will prompt the driver to change drive mode before the range reaches zero and then limit the power delivery. If these prompts are ignored the vehicle will ultimately stop. When the range reaches zero, in order to get the taxi started again the driver will need to select a different drive mode.

2. Is it possible to download or add 3rd party “apps” - such as the Zap Map charge point locator - to the touch screen console in TX/VN5?

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To protect the interface we control what can be installed, as untested apps can interfere with the existing functions. At this moment in time 3rd party apps from the App Store or Google Store aren't compatible with the touch screen console. However there is ample space on the accessory bar, and complimentary on-board Wi-Fi, which allows drivers to attach a tablet and/or mobile phone which could run 3rd party apps such as Zap-Map or Android Auto.

3. Why is the petrol range-extender fitted with a turbo?

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The turbo helps improve the efficiency and durability of the engine.

4. Is it true the petrol range-extender is governed by a sensor that if you went in to certain places in London they will be able to stop it from working until you're out of that area?

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Unlike other European cities we're working with, there is currently no geo-fencing requirement in London. However if TfL were to introduce this requirement, we have a supplier in place who we'll work with to fit the necessary on-board software.

5. I sometimes hear the fan on when the engine is off or whilst on charge, is this normal?

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​Just as in diesel or petrol vehicles with traditional combustion engines, it's normal for the fan to run for a short while after the vehicle has shut down. Since the engine has stopped running it no longer circulates coolant to cool it down, therefore the fan kicks in to cool the necessary components - you'd definitely expect to hear in during the warmer summer months. It's also worth noting that TX/VN5 will also run the fans as required while plugged in to charge, for the same reason.

6. Does the odometer on the display show a total distance travelled on electric & petrol, if so can they be shown separately?

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Currently the odometer shows a combination of the distance travelled on electric and petrol. We aim to be very transparent with our new vehicle and we're continually looking for ways to share more information with drivers, which is why we're looking at how to separate this data in the future.

7. If I left my TX/VN5 unused for a week will it still start?

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​Yes that isn't a problem, just like any other vehicle TX and VN5 rely on a 12V battery to start the system.

8. Is TX/VN5 classed as a Zero Emission Capable vehicle?

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TfL classify a zero emissions capable taxi as one with an official combined CO2 output of less than 50g, which can travel at least 30 miles on electric only. Both TX and VN5 comfortably exceed these requirements with remarkably low CO2 emissions.

9. Does the fuel cut off switch at the boot disable the vehicle completely?

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No the fuel cut off switch simply stops the petrol range-extender from working, you can still operate in Pure EV mode. The switch is part of TfL Conditions of Fitness but isn't really necessary on newer vehicles with more sophisticated engine safety precautions.

10. What type of electric vehicle is TX/VN5?

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TX and VN5 are range-extended electric vehicle. This means that it is always driven electrically by a motor and powered by a battery. 

Because the nature of a commercial vehicle operator's work is varied and unpredictable by its nature, both also have a small petrol range-extender fitted. This is not connected to the wheels and cannot drive the vehicle as an engine, it acts as a generator to send electrical energy to the battery and ensures drivers are able to complete their fare before needing to stop to recharge. It is this technology which overcomes the range anxiety faced by many operators and gives the confidence to consider an ultra-low emissions vehicle. 

As well as emitting none of the harmful particulates associated with a diesel engine, the combined CO2 emissions on the official WLTP drive cycle, which includes use of the range-extender, is between 19 and 21 g/km respectively. 

11. How do I pre-warm/pre-cool my TX/VN5 using mains electricity rather than taking energy from the drive battery?

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In an electric vehicle, the cabin temperature is maintained electrically using energy from the drive battery.

When charging your TX/VN5, whether overnight at home or on-street, you can set a ‘Parking Climate’ timer to prewarm or pre-cool the cabin using the mains electricity. This feature automatically activates the climate control system to restore the last set temperature and fan speed. This means energy isn’t taken from the battery to do the same job after you’ve driven away, helping to preserve your electric range…plus, you get to climb into a vehicle that’s just the way you like it.

12. Some drivers have described a feeling of ‘surging forward’ while slowing down. Does this indicate a fault with the vehicle?

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This sensation is a characteristic of the way the braking system operates, it does not affect the braking performance of the vehicle, or indicate a fault with the vehicle. 

Antilock Braking Systems (ABS) use sensors to identify if a wheel is beginning to rotate more slowly than expected during braking, indicating a loss of grip that will lead to the wheel ‘locking up’. Hydraulic valves reduce the braking effort on the affected wheels, preventing them from skidding and allowing the driver to maintain control.

TX/VN5 features regenerative braking, recovering energy that would usually be lost while slowing down to recharge the drive battery. The regeneration generates drag on the rear wheels as the vehicle gradually slows while coasting and up to around 10% of brake pedal effort.

When wheel slip is identified, the system must react by deactivating the regeneration to reduce the drag on the rear wheels. This could be the result of a heavy braking event, slippery conditions or a change of road surface (such as ironworks). Disengaging the regenerative braking has the effect of reducing the rate of deceleration; this can give the feeling of vehicle surging forward and drivers typically react to this sensation by applying the brake pedal harder. In many cases, the affected wheel has already begun to rotate normally, and the vehicle reacts to the new input by slowing more rapidly.

This sensation only occurs at low speeds and under light braking, where the vehicle is being slowed by the regeneration. In emergency braking events, most of the braking effort is already being achieved using the hydraulic wheel brakes and so the sensation of the ABS working in the conventional way is more familiar.

Working in conjunction with the ABS system, Autonomous Emergency Braking monitors the road ahead, ready to react if an imminent collision is detected. The system operates more quickly and effectively than most humans can and while antilock braking systems normally decrease stopping distances, on very slippery surfaces, such as gravel or snow, ABS may actually increase the overall braking distance, but allow the driver to maintain steering control.

13. Does the TX/VN5 have a catalytic converter?

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Yes it does – it’s just one of the emissions-reducing technologies utilised by our highly-efficient range-extender, which contributes to its combined CO2 emissions (on the WLTP cycle) of just 19 and 21g/km respectively, which assumes some use of the petrol range-extender.

14. Can I adjust the volume of the road traffic announcements?

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Yes. All sounds can be adjusted in the settings of your vehicle.

Find the setting on your touch screen by clicking: Settings > Sound > System Volumes.

All the information regarding the different features of TX and VN5 and more instructions are available on the TX Operator App, which can be downloaded for free.


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Safety & Security

1. How strong is the body structure?

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​Pound for pound, Aluminium absorbs twice as much energy as mild-steel, effectively dissipating the forces experienced in a crash. We use hot-cured adhesive to bond our body structure together, a process more than twice as strong as welding that allows long, consistent contact across the entire joint. Similar technology has been used successfully in aerospace and sports cars for over 20 years.

The thick, laminated glass is similar to that used for the windscreen. It contains a special tinting layer that block 95% of emitted light energy entering the cabin, helping to keep the interior at a comfortable temperature. Due to its location, it is also far less susceptible to damage than a windscreen - and if the worse should happen it is far quicker and easier to replace than a traditional roof panel, minimising repair costs.

2. What about the potential for battery theft?

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​As well as its inaccessible location beneath the vehicle, the battery pack weighs almost 350kg. There are 35 different fixings, as well as the exhaust, high voltage wiring and cooling system, that would need to be disconnected before removal. Without specialised equipment and a vehicle lift, removal of the battery is virtually impossible.

3. I've heard that the battery emits radiation - is this true?

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​All vehicles manufactured in the UK have to meet strict regulations around electromagnetic radiation levels in order to be sold around Europe. The Vehicle Certification Agency oversee these tests in the UK, and our vehicles passed these with flying colours. In addition, our battery technology has been used in other Geely group vehicles including Volvo Cars, with owners covering millions upon millions of miles.

4. Does TX/VN5 have Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS)?

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One of the many advantages of electric propulsion is the removal of engine noise. However, we have become accustomed to using the sound of an engine as warning of an approaching vehicle; this is particularly true of vulnerable road users and service animals.

There is currently no legislation in force requiring electric vehicles to generate an artificial noise. Noise generating systems that operate at different vehicle speeds, volumes or with differing types of sound are potentially confusing to other road users. It is also argued that such a noise could negate the noise pollution benefits of an electric vehicle. To resolve these challenges, a common standard is currently being developed. New legislation requiring a pedestrian warning sound, known as AVAS, comes into force on 1st July 2019 for newly type-approved vehicles (i.e. the launch of an all-new vehicle). From 1st July 2021 the legislation extends to all newly registered vehicles. We are therefore developing an AVAS system in-line with this legislation and aim to introduce it at the earliest opportunity.

TX and VN5 are fitted with a sophisticated active safety system called Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). This system monitors the road ahead using cameras and radar sensors and if a vulnerable road user is at risk, the vehicle will apply the brakes automatically to avoid a collision. A range of additional driver aids, such as parking sensors and a rear camera, are also available to help drivers take extra care when manoeuvring in busy congested areas.

5. Is there a way to turn off the Automatic Emergency Breaking (AEB)?

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The AEB is an active safety feature designed to protect drivers and other road users; it has been proven to help improve road safety and reduce accident rates - which will further reduce insurance costs. For these reasons it can't be turned off. Drivers can however adjust the volume of the audio warning. For instructions on how to do this, refer to our free TX Operator App, which can be downloaded here:



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6. How are occupants protected from Air Pollution?

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​Working on busy streets for long hours means commercial vehicle operators are one of the most at-risk groups for exposure to poor air-quality and the resulting long-term health impacts. While cities move towards more sustainable transport, helped by LEVC's eCity electric drivetrain, today’s drivers spend much of their day behind the tailpipe of the car ahead.

The cabin air filter fitted to TX/VN5 features an extra-large surface area, ensuring excellent airflow while capturing pollen, fine particles and impurities to prevent contaminants from entering the vehicle’s interior. The electronic air pollution sensor even monitors the quality of the air flowing to the interior vents and automatically closes the intake if high levels of pollution are detected; protecting the occupants from the harmful effects of Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Oxide and ground level Ozone, so you can breathe-easy.

When air pollution is detected and all doors and windows are closed, the exterior intake is closed and the ‘Cleanzone’ indicator on the touchscreen changes from white to blue. Re-circulation turns off automatically after 20 minutes to prevent Carbon Dioxide build up inside the cabin.

Quality

1. What quality assurances take place?

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Our Customer Acceptance Team Area work from a dedicated Quality Centre within our Ansty factory. Here they verify that every vehicle has been built to process and is fault free before leaving the facility. They have access to the very latest testing facilities such as a wheel and headlight alignment rig, rolling-road, ‘squeak and rattle’ test track, ‘monsoon’ water test, sophisticated electrical test equipment, vehicle lifts and high-intensity lighting.

2. How has the vehicle been tested?

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Our team of development engineers are based at Horiba MIRA, one of the most comprehensive vehicle test facilities in the UK. More than 80 prototype vehicles over the last three years, adapting industry best practise to the specific requirements of a taxi. The TX has also been subject to road tests in some of the most extreme environments in the world, from the deserts of Arizona to the Arctic Circle.

3. How can you guarantee the quality of the vehicle?

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TX and VN5 have been designed and built from the ground up, using the latest technology by a hugely-experienced team of experts recruited from across the automotive industry and with the benefit of our unrivalled experience in the taxi trade. Our brand new, purpose-built facility in Ansty has been constructed with the same approach, with the best equipment, processes and systems dedicated to ensuring unrivalled quality. The electric powertrain in both vehicles has undergone the most extensive testing and development we’ve ever undertaken; in fact, the new TX has completed more test mileage than all of our previous models put together.

4. How can I get extra protection for my TX/VN5?

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Our warranty demonstrates our confidence in the durability of this vehicle and is comparable with the best in the industry. We recognise that some customers require even greater peace of mind, so we're able to offer an extended warranty at an affordable price.

Design & Development

1. Why are certain features optional and not standard?

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Many different factors play a part in configuring the specification of a vehicle. However, where we feel a feature offers universal value to all customers, this would typically be offered as part of the standard specification. Where this value is likely to be perceived by only some customers, we feel it is more appropriate to offer this equipment as an optional extra, particularly where the cost of inclusion is significant. A good example of this is the home-charging wall box, which adds no value to customers without off-street parking, but which as an optional represents great value for customers who do.

2. What is TX/VN5 made of? Does it contain cadmium metal?

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TX/VN5 features an aluminium chassis bonded with incredibly strong adhesives, and is fully anodised, enhancing the vehicle’s structural strength whilst also improving efficiency and extending its range. The use of aluminium, a material 30% lighter than conventional steel, is inspired by the lightweight chassis structures of British sports cars and makes the new TX/VN5’s body stronger and lighter than any previous model. The use of aluminium, which is 100% recyclable, boosts the both vehicles' green credentials even further.

VN5/TX’s body panels have been designed for easy removal and repair, making maintenance quicker and easier. The composite materials used - which contain no cadmium metal - also mean that they already have corrosion resistance built-in. 

Comfort and Convenience

1. How do I pair my phone via Bluetooth & enable the messaging function?

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It’s easy to enable the messaging function in your electric vehicle. Simply, pair your device with your vehicle ('My Taxi' for TX drivers and 'My Van' for VN5 drivers) via Bluetooth in the normal way. Make sure that 'Messages' in the list of displayed options is ticked. Your phone may prompt you to allow access to your text messages or you can enable this setting in the ‘My Taxi' / 'My Van’ Bluetooth connection settings. One paired, switch off your ignition. When you re-start your EV, the phone will reconnect and the new Bluetooth setting set will take effect.

Now, you will be notified when you receive a new message and TX/VN5 can read it to you at the tap of button. You can also access existing messages and listen to them again. What is more, this function allows you to send message to a contact or reply to a message when the vehicle is stationary, and it is safe to do so.

2. How often should you have the aircon regassed?

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Air-conditioning refrigerant isn’t a service item; if used regularly (to ensure the seals are kept lubricated) the air-con should maintain pressure for many years. If you have noticed a deterioration in air-conditioning performance, we suggest you contact your LEVC dealer who will be able to investigate if there is an issue with any of the components in the heating and ventilation system.