Taxi! 1977 London Black Taxi

I say old chaps! Have we got a car for you? If you are looking for something a bit different, and if you can cope with a car that is right-hand drive, then this genuine 1977 London Black Cab might be just what you’re looking for. It is currently sitting in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, and the owner is looking for someone willing to restore this old classic to its former glory. If that person is you, then you will find the London Cab listed for sale here on Craigslist. I have to say thank you to Barn Finder Roger for referring this one to us.

The taxi is going to need some restoration work, but it generally doesn’t look that bad. Being mainly used in the hustle and bustle of London city traffic, these tended to experience more than a few bumps, scrapes and ding throughout their working life, and this one is showing some of these today. I suspect that this is what is causing the paint issue near the tail-light, as it has the signs of a deteriorating repair. There are a few other spots like this around the vehicle, so it will need a really thorough inspection and check during the restoration process. The owner also identifies some deterioration in the Taxi’s chassis but doesn’t elaborate of this.

The interior is a bit worn but honestly isn’t too bad. In reality, this is hardly surprising. These vehicles were designed to cope with tens of thousands of people riding in them over hundreds of thousands of miles. Interior trim had to be hard-wearing, and this lot certainly is. There are a few minor tears in the upholstery in the front of the vehicle, but these look like they could be repaired. The upholstery in the back looks to be virtually flawless.

Powering this particular Black Taxi is a 2,520cc 4-cylinder diesel engine and manual transmission. The manual transmission is a bit of an anomaly with this vehicle, as by the time it was manufactured, the majority of London Taxis were fitted with an automatic transmission. The other thing that I am aware of is the fact that when I used the term “powering,” it was being used fairly loosely. The owner doesn’t reveal whether or not the vehicle runs and drives, or the state of the rest of the mechanical components. Having said that, these are notoriously hardy and long-lived, so there is room for some cautious optimism.

It probably goes without saying that these are a niche vehicle. They are not fast, but they are amazingly maneuverable. For a vehicle of this size to possess a turning circle of 25ft is pretty impressive. They are also remarkably practical, and owning one of these will ensure that you will attract attention and smiles wherever you go. The owner is asking $4,750 for the London Taxi, which seems pretty reasonable. When these come on the market, good ones usually attract around $18,000, so this one looks like it could be a good project buy.

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Comments

  1. dave brennan

    225 slant 6,clifford headers,4 speed,appropriate rear w fat sneakers!!

    Like 4
  2. Jon Rappuhn

    Maybe someone with more knowledge of English diesel engines can help me here, it looks like a V type engine with plug wires running from the back over valve covers. The description says a 4 cylinder diesel. Been around a lot of truck and tractor diesels but haven’t seen anything like this. So diesel or engine swap?

  3. KeithK

    I do say old boys, I must agree with Jon. A fair bit of chicanery must be afoot here. The amount of pedals would indicate a self-shifting gearbox and the cooler mounted on the bow is another intimation of an automated shifting conductance. The General Motors ( oh pish posh ) belt driven charging device seems a bit rudimentary for such a significant price of British history. Something peculiar is afoot here gentlemen.

    Like 3
  4. David Rhoces

    had a ride in one of these when I was in London …neat experience

  5. luke arnott Member

    Slow,noisy & uncomfortable(for passengers & driver).They were at one time made with petrol engines too.

  6. Peter K

    PLUG WIRES? THATS A GAS CAR…. $4800. Its about $4300 too much.

  7. Ernie the Dancing Weasel

    Yeah, two pedals, V configuration engine, trans oil cooler zip tied to the radiator.

    Something fishy here and I don’t see any chips…🤔

  8. Gay Car Nut

    Sweet looking car. I rode in these cars while I was visiting England. I find it more comfortable than they look like they would be.

  9. Al

    To think, this car was specifically designed to turn around in front of the Savoy Hotel in London, a feat which only until recently could not be managed by any other car.
    This car only burns petrol.

    Like 7
  10. Craig Walker

    According to the licence plate the cab was registered in central London in early 1977.

  11. Gay Car Nut

    Sweet looking taxi. I’d purchase one if I could afford it, and upgrade the engine to a turbo diesel engine. I’d prefer one with automatic gearbox, and possibly wheelchair accessible to accommodate both manual and electronic wheelchair users.

  12. Dave

    I purchased this gem for a decent price and come to find out it someone swapped out the 4cylinder diesel for a 308 v8 and has automatic transmission, have invested less than $2k including paint and interior! It’ll be back on the road in the next month, just waiting on brake parts!

    Like 2
  13. Car Nut Tacoma

    If I bought a London Taxi, I’d replace the original diesel with a turbo diesel engine, possibly a Duramax 2.8 litre turbo diesel.

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