Austin FX4 Taxi Cab
The famous London Taxi, or ‘Black Cab’ as it is often called, was first built in Coventry in 1948. The firm of Carbodies, established in 1919, became major coach-builders gaining lucrative contracts with large car companies including Humber, Daimler and Rolls-Royce. In the late 1940s, Carbodies diversified into building complete taxis. Due to a partnership with dealers Mann & Overton and the Austin Car Company, the first ‘FX3’ Taxi model, carrying the Austin badge, rolled off the Carbodies production line in 1948.
The ‘FX4’ Taxi was first shown to the public in 1958 at the Commercial Motor Show, and described by the press as ‘considerably lower and more streamlined than its predecessor’. Like this 1961 example on display, the FX4 continued to be built in Coventry to the same design for the next 30 years, until it was eventually replaced by the Fairway model by new owners, London Taxis International.
In this year: 1958
• The first parking meters are installed in Britain
• Prince Charles is given the title ‘Prince of Wales’
• First exhibition of Computers held at Earls Court in London