In January 1998, Stanley Roth (Ex-Y53) arrived at Dial-a-Cab and immediately informed Call Sign of the advantages in taxis using Liquefied petroleum gas – better known as LPG. And up until the day in August 2009 when he left to publicise the Gastech LPG 2.7 TX1’s Nissan engine conversion, he never stopped telling anyone prepared to listen about the advantages of this type of fuel, especially as regards to cleanliness of it compared to diesel.
   Stanley’s Gastech TX1 runs on LPG only, although it does have a 14litre back-up petrol tank in case of a very long journey with no LPG pumps along the way.
   Stanley told Call Sign: "Over the years I’ve had various gas cabs, but I must say this is the best one yet. My TX1 is quieter and smoother than my LPG Metro. The current cost of conversion is £5170 including VAT and will go up with the next batch of engines to £6110 (incl VAT). The increase is due to the due exchange rate on the AUS$ against the Pound."
   Stanley’s TX1 has twin aircon, which he uses all the time, does between 11-18 MPG, with a litre of LPG costing 64.9 pence. Which means compared to diesel you would get between 22 and 36mpg. More importantly so far as the future of London taxis is concerned, according to the Mayor’s draft air quality strategy for public consultation Clearing the Air, taxis cause 20% of the two worst pollutants. Firstly there is NOx and Stanley’s TX1 is 90% cleaner than Euro 5! Then there’s the miniscule particulate matter PM10. PM10 has the greatest 

Was Stanley right all along???

Stanley with his LPG TX1
Stanley with his LPG TX1
chance of ending up in the lungs if breathed in. Diesels pump it out but Stanley’s cab has none at all. 
   Mayor Boris Johnson, in response to a question from Darren Johnson – who chaired the GLA’s investigation into air quality in the capital with Every breath you take - stated that there could be exemptions from future regulations limiting the life of a taxi, if those cabs could better Euro 4. Stanley’s taxi betters Euro 5.
   In 2001, Camden Council in conjunction with Call Sign, offered Dial-a-Cab drivers the opportunity of having their taxis converted to LPG thanks to their offer of paying the cost, with drivers just paying the VAT. Around 15 drivers actually had the conversion. Of course back then, Euro5 was a pipe dream and no one really took much notice. Now things are different and Stanley – who was using gas taxis long before 2001 – looks as though he may have been right all along. Had we all been converted, would we even be mentioned in any clean air report?
   Now Stanley is promoting the system and his TX1 is the first London Taxi to be approved to carry a full rear window advert. The contra-view Ad was produced and fitted by In-Cab Promotions.
Stanley ended by saying: "Since 1961 when I nearly died in one of London’s last smog’s, I have thought about a cleaner London. I was the second owner-driver to change over to LPG in 1970 and 15 years ago had a Natural Gas taxi. At last I have found an engine that is far better than anything the Mayor wants for 2012. This engine has passed Millbrook testing as a Euro5 and in fact is well clear of the minimum set for that rating. My aim is simply to make London a greener place to live."
   If you think that LPG is a possibility for you, then you can go to (click on London Taxi) to see what the engine is all about, or alternatively you can email Stanley at

Cycling the world - stationary!

On 4 June, Call Sign visited the Hilton Hotel at Euston and the venue for the annual ‘Cycle the World’ fund-raising activity staged in the hotel foyer by the London Taxidrivers’ Fund for Underprivileged Children. Two Committee members and various members of hotel staff were eagerly pedalling away on stationary gymnasium bikes to raise money for the Fund.
   “Our aim,” said Fund Hon Chairman and long-time Dial-a-Cab subscriber David Lessman (D19) “is to beat last year’s total of £300 and 111.47 miles within the allotted eight hour time slot. Each cyclist does a twenty minute stint before handing over to the next cyclist. A bit like a relay race, except that the bikes don’t move,” he said with a grin as the due’s sweaty polo shirts told the story!

David Malcolm - worn out but still smiling!

   The Fund’s Hon Secretary, Malcolm Shaffron, added that they  were already closing in on last year’s figure.
   “Hotel guests have contributed generously,” he said with a sly smile before adding the telling remark, “although that apparently was an easier option than to take up our offer of building up a sweat by having a 20-minute bash on a bike!”
   With the famous Lessman twinkle in his eye, David concluded by telling Call Sign/i>:
   “We made hotel guests an offer they found difficult to refuse!”
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