The last group of 7,000 Xiali sedans, Beijing's ubiquitous little red taxi cab, will be retired this year, according to the Beijing Public Transportation.
Administration said recently that a total of 8,000 new taxi cabs will hit Beijing's street this year, replacing the last of the Xialis.
The capital city replaced more than 30,000 older taxi cabs last year, said the Administration.
A staff member with the North Taxi Company said only 160 Xiali sedans remain in its fleet of 3,300 taxis. The Xialis have been replaced by the larger and more comfortable Jetta, Sonata and Elantra.
Six years ago, Beijing replaced its 22,000 yellow minivans, which were nicknamed Miandi or 'loaf of bread' cabs because of their shape, with the larger, less-polluting Xiali.
The Administration said it plans to retire and replace 22,600 cabs in Beijing by 2010.
(Xinhua News Agency February 13, 2006)