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“Will Be The Taxi Of Not Only New York But Of The World”

NOTES: “Real-like version of the concept will be ready for 2010 Istanbul Autoshow ”

  • Hexagon Studio, which designed the project of Karsan, spent four months and carried out 18 thousand hours of engineering work. Trough out the project, team conducted interviews with taxi owners and taxi fleets, as well as the passengers in New York.
  • 1500 pages of documentation was prepared for the bid and 11 copies were made. A mockup and posters of the taxi project were added to the tender boxes.
  • A real-like version of the concept vehicle “V1” will be displayed at the 2010 Istanbul Autoshow for the first time.
  • The New York Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) will announce the finalist projects at the end of the month and start examining the finalists. Execution of the contract subsequent to the evaluations is expected to done in 2010 and delivery of the vehicles to commence before year-end 2013. The company, to which the tender is awarded, will sell 2.650 vehicles each year for 10 years.

  • The concept vehicle will run on LPG, natural gas, gasoline or electric engines. The vehicle with a rear-mounted engine is equipped with a ramp for the handicapped and an enhanced onboard entertainment system for the passengers.
  • The taxi version of the Transit Connect manufactured in Gölcük is among the competitors of Karsan in the tender as well.   

“Will Be The Taxi Of Not Only New York But Of The World”

Levent Köprülü

Stating that they had participated in the New York Taxi tender in order to create a domestic brand, Karsan Chairman of the Board İnan Kıraç says: “This will be the vehicle of the world”.

Karsan Chairman of the Board Kıraç, stated that Turkey needed and is yearning for its own brand and added: “The taxi project developed by Karsan together with its sister company Hexagon Studio will be the “vehicle of the world”.

Karsan organized a meeting in order to publicize the project, for which it participated in the tender for the “Taxi of Tomorrow” opened by the New York Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) in the New York City, USA. Speaking in the meeting, Karsan Chairman of the Board İnan Kıraç, by reminding the manufacturing history of the Turkish automotive Industry, stated the following: “During that period, They called us as assemblers, blamed us by producing old vehicles. Both were true, but we had no other chance. If you sell 20 thousand vehicles in a year, you have to prolong the model years”. Stating that they had never misled the Turkish people and always produced the right vehicles, Kıraç continued: “If the production of the “bird series” would be granted to us, 20.000 vehicles could be sold and exported annually.”

“We miss the domestic brand”

Reminding that while it was difficult to find 20 engineers in the 70’s, 4000 engineers are working in the automotive R&D only today, Kıraç continued: “Therefore, we need our own brand. We really miss that now. Since the prominent brands in Turkey have foreign partners, their chances are low; hence we need a structure which is 100% domestic and independent of any entity. Karsan has claimed this issue and decided enter that struggle”.

Underlining that Karsan had developed the vehicle together with its sister company Hexagon Studio, Kıraç said “New York may or may not be. But believe me you will see that this vehicle will be the vehicle of the world. It will be the vehicle of Istanbul and Turkey and become a starting point as the first domestic brand name”. Continued on to say that the new entrepreneurs also have the same belief and the Turkish brands will be introduced in to this sector, Kıraç underlined that the Turkish people and government have to claim the automotive industry.

“We are competing with the giants”

While drawing attention to the fact that Turkish automotive industry was yearning to create its own brand, Karsan Executive Director Jan Nahum said that this is not just “a romantic thought” but a need.

Expressing that the added value of a brand which belongs to Turkey, is three times more compared to the others, Nahum stated that the New York Taxi tender is an opportunity to respond the need for a domestic brand. “The Turkish automotive sector needs an original model, and a design. Domestic brand is not just a romantic expectation or a desire of “we should have a brand too”. This is a transition that has to be done by the Turkish Automotive sector in order to be able to assume the role it should take.  Our journey is not an easy one; we need to work with all we have. We are just at the beginning and there is a long way to go” said Nahum and stating that the tender has triggered the opportunity of the Turkish Automotive to create a domestic brand, went on: “We are competing with the giants. We may encounter troubles. We want to win but the important thing is enabling the Turkish Automotive industry to response to that need. Today our industry possesses this power; the important thing is to define that need. New York may or may not be. But we really would like a special vehicle like this for Istanbul. There is an opportunity for such a vehicle in the world. In order to become a brand name, the Turkish automotive sector has to identify and respond to such opportunities.”


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