DENVER—Metro Taxi of Denver has a new look and it's not just a paint job.
"Yeah, the taxi industry is taking notice of this pretty quickly, " said Chris Cotter, Director of Sustainable Practices with Metro Taxi. "We bought our first five back in May," he added.
For some, the ride alone is enough. Susan Henderson, a passenger said, "Oh the ride is a lot superior to the other taxis we used to take. It's very comfortable."
Gloria Pope, another passenger said, "I enjoy riding in them and I feel safe. I also know that because I am a very environmentally-conscious person they are very safe on the environment."
Ray isn't only a driver, he's a salesman, ready to show off the hybrid technology to his passengers. "I've had three people tell me that they were going to buy one. Today I'm averaging 53 miles per gallon," said Ray. Chris added, "On average the drivers are making between $400 to $600 on gas savings alone even after they've paid the extra fee for the car."
Right now Metro Taxi has 20 hybrid taxis, they hope to add five to ten more by May. The long-term goal is to eventually replace their entire fleet of nearly 400 cars.
It goes beyond taxis, a maintenance building used to repair and maintain their fleet is heated solely by re-used motor oil saving them thousands of dollars a month.
"Those types of projects allow us to put more money into the vehicles," said Chris. "We'd like to be looked upon as a symbol or representation that sustainable business doesn't mean that we don't care about the bottom line, we're still looking for profits. You can operate a business in an environmentally savvy way and still do quite well."