What do the Taxi Companies Run?

Messages
1,130
Location
California
I am always amazed at the huge mileage taxi and limo companies put on their vehicles, and the operating conditions are horrible for them in large cities. Stop and go, lots of idling, brutal drivers, etc. Does anyone know what the typical oils are that these folks use and what kind of OCI schedules they run? John
 
Messages
12,385
Location
Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by jthorner: I am always amazed at the huge mileage taxi and limo companies put on their vehicles, and the operating conditions are horrible for them in large cities. Stop and go, lots of idling, brutal drivers, etc. John
I was in a Lincoln limo on my way to the airport a few years ago. It was in real nice conditions o I asked the driver how many miles it had. It was approaching 300,000 miles without major engine work. I didn't think to get any more info. I think Limos get less abuse than taxis. Kinda like high priced call girls vs street walkers.
 

TC

Messages
1,644
Location
California
Don't know, but I'd bet my mortgage it's typically a low-cost, name brand SL dino like Pennzoil, Valvoline, Havoline, etc. Whatever their bulk supplier normally offers. Some fleets (car and/or truck) might spring for synthetics I would think, but most have budget limitations they have to work with, limiting themselves to lower-cost products unless they can justify otherwise. Larger fleets can cost-benefit such stuff to death, but a small taxi or limo fleet?...I'd bet they'll simply use whatever dino the mechanic(s) are familiar with, maybe what they use for their own car/truck. From my experience, many of these small taxi firms are "mom & pop" in terms of their organizational sophistication.
 
Messages
2,534
Location
Pittsburgh, PA
[Cool] From what I've seen locally and when I travel, I don't think cab companies give much of a hoot about maintenance. Something breaks or seizes up, they just grab another engine, part, whatever from a wrecked cab out back. [Big Grin] Most cost-effective just to run them to death with minimal care since many cab commissions limit the career miles of a vehicle, they go out and buy another ex police car at auction and paint it. Gotta love the cabs in Memphis, take a Crown Vic, Marquis, Town Car, and spray the whole thing white or green, vinyl top included. [Roll Eyes] All that said, I know GM was using the Pittsburgh Yellow Cab fleet to test suspension, brakes, and trannys, so that whipped-out cab you're in may well have prototype parts for some future model in it.
 
Messages
174
Location
ct
Our local police mechanic says that the local cab company buys some of the old cop cars and they just top off with the cheapest oil they can get..The new cars the cops get have their oil changed at 5k,they put in M1 and just add if needed til the car is gotton rid of.usually 72-90k.. [Wink]
 
Messages
2,602
Location
The Tropics of Antartica
quote:
Originally posted by sewerman: The new cars the cops get have their oil changed at 5k,they put in M1 and just add if needed til the car is gotton rid of.usually 72-90k.. [Wink]
Hey , I would like to catch a sample of that and send it to the lab [Eek!]
 
Messages
826
Location
ON, Canada
The local Cab companies around here use the cheapest oil at Canadian Tire: Auto Lab. I don't know much about oil, but judging by it's price it's probably one of the worst oils you can buy. The owner/operators take much better care of their cabs and run their own personal preferences. Most cabs, even the severely abused fleet cars, see 250-300K miles with ease out of an engine. Better cared for units see much higher mileages. There are no age or mileage restrictions on the cabs around here, so there are many very high mileage units on the road, and some questionably roadworthy cars! The majority of cars are ex-police cruiser, mostly Caprices.
 
This has been stated multiple times before, but I'll say it again. BITOG members are perfectionists. Most could get by with any vehicle they own by doing the minimum maintenance with the cheapest filter and the cheapest SL oil at 5k mile OCI's. This vehicle will easily see 200k miles. However, we want to be better than that. We want to KNOW that our engines (and other mechanical components) are getting the least wear possible. We are fanatics and we like it that way!
 

Patman

Staff member
Messages
22,017
Location
Guelph, Ontario
quote:
Originally posted by ZmOz: If they get crappy oil...and rarely change it...and beat the **** out of the car...why do they last so long?! [Confused] [Eek!]
Less cold starts, and the fact that they usually run domestic made V8s, which despite what TooSlick says, will last very long. I read about a 96 Town Car in my local paper that is used as an airport limo and has over 1,000,000km on it and is still going strong on it's original motor.
 
Messages
34,480
Location
NJ
I was in NY City about two months ago and my friend and I were talking about the Crown Vic taxis used. Even the Police use them. They last because domestic V8's are very good engines. The Ford 5.0 and now 4.6L are very good engines and will last a long time even on dino changed every 3k. Tough cars.
 
Messages
30
Location
Pacific NW
Just about every late-'80's - mid-'90's Town Car I've ever seen leaves a belch of blue smoke every time the driver hits the gas. Judging by the typical blue-haired driver. I'm betting most have lower-than-average miles on their small Ford V8. They may be suffering from poor maintenance but that's still not a great endorsement for that engine.
 
Messages
279
Location
High Up in the Rockies
So how many miles do the cab companies get out of their automatic transmissions? Anybody know what their service practices are for the trannies? Some folks on this list think it's great if you get 100k on an auto tranny (don't know what kind of cars they are driving or what sort of driving they do) but most taxi's I've ever been in are abused by the drivers (IMHO). What about the trannies? DEWFPO [ January 31, 2004, 03:46 PM: Message edited by: DEWFPO ]
 
Messages
68
Location
Montréal, Canada
My uncle in NYC had a fleet of 10 yellow taxi cabs (Chevrolet Caprice's)in the late '80's. He changed the oil every Sunday on all the cars using dino Mobil 10w-40 for winter and 20w-50 for summer. I remember he had a '86 Caprice with over 600k miles on the original motor. Only reason he took it off the road was because it wouldn't pass NY state emissions inspections. The others lasted up to 300k to 400k miles.
 
Messages
2,441
Location
Indiana
Took a cab to the airport recently. When I was putting my luggage in the trunk, I noticed a few quarts of Castrol Syntec blend.
 
Messages
526
Location
Manitoba Canada
Most taxi's I've ever seen are hardly ever shut off. Depending on the climate, especially a very cold climate, you get a LOT of wear doing a cold start. Since those hacks are always in use, and most domestic V8's are loafing along anyway, minimal wear. Jerry
 
Messages
14,013
Location
Retired | Wausau, WI
My wife and I spent a week in NYC last year taking in the sites and going to some Broadway shows. We flew in and took a cab to the hotel. Everywhere we went we took a cab. I asked 5 cab drivers what oil they used and this was their response. 1. Pennzoil 2. Castrol 3. Whatever 4. Don't know 5. What oil?? [Eek!] The way they drive I should have asked what company they have their life insurance with.
 
Messages
251
Location
Dallas, TX
I used to work for the biggest wholesale and retail floral delivery company in Houston, and they leased their vans & trucks. As a result, they used Exxon Superflo 10w-30 in them on an interval of roughly once a month. I figure the average weekly mileage was probably about 200 miles, I figure that's about every 4000-5000 miles and this left plenty of room for time spent idling, etc... No engine problems at all while I was there- plenty of brake, A/C, etc... but the engines seemed indestructible. (probably were- didn't the 1991 Aerostar have a 3.0L Vulcan?)
 
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