Beijing’s electric taxis are cleaner, but battery woes leave drivers flat
By Ge Ning

2017-05-25 22:41 GMT+8

There is a quiet revolution taking place on Beijing's busy streets, as a growing number of taxis in the capital are electric-powered rather than petrol-guzzling.

The electric taxis travel farther and are much more environmentally friendly, but practical problems remain. Some of the drivers complain that finding a charging post can be very hard -- and inconvenient. 

So how does one find a charging post? Normally, taxi drivers use an app. They say it takes about seven hours for a full charge, and about 90 minutes for a "quick charge." The full charge is done at home, and can be supplemented with the 90-minute top-up. 

CGTN Photo

During winter, the mileage the electric taxis can cover is cut short due to the need for heating. Experts say the key to extending the endurance mileage is improving and developing battery technology. 

To assuage mileage troubles, automakers are expected to make breakthroughs in battery and motor technology by 2030.

CGTN's Jin Yinqiao reports that changing the battery is another option. It takes just five minutes, and is much more efficient than a 90-minute charge. 

The number of these battery-changing facilities in Beijing is expected to reach 200 by the end of this year, and authorities say by 2020, there will be at least five million charging posts in China, and no less than 80 million by 2030.