This Is London's First Electric Taxi From Way Back In 1897

By Sam Gibbs on at

Electric cars are all the rage, or at least they're trying to be. We've got the Nissan Leaf, the Renault Fluence, and even the lust-worthy Tesla, but did you know the first electric taxi actually cropped up in London back in 1897, looking like a weird carriage without the horse.

The Science Museum has just opened a new exhibition featuring the first Bersy taxi -- a fully-fledged electric car for hire from before the turn of the century. The thing did 9mph as standard, but would just about manage 12mph with a few tweaks here and there. At their peak there were 75 of the marvels flying around the streets of London with a 30-mile range each.

115 years on and range is still an issue, even if we have managed to get 10 times that of the old Bersy. I don't know about you, but I'd love for my next cab ride to be in one of these beauties, but I guess a poxy Prius is the closest I'm going to get.

The Climate Changing Stories exhibition, which features the ancient electric machine, opens today for a year with free admission.