Tank taxi takes on Lift and Uber

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Keep an eye out for Lift and Uber, a British hobbyist who has become an entrepreneur, offering customers rides in his ‘tank taxi’. And like the rideshare model, he drives his own vehicle, even though his operating costs for his 1967 armored vehicle are much higher.

Merlin Batchelor from Norwich picked up his 15-tonne excess ‘tank’ the old-fashioned way – he bought it over the internet. He admits that his $ 35,000 purchase is actually not a tank, but an APC or armored crew car. The city apparently allows tracked vehicles to roam its streets, and friends and acquaintances began begging for rides, though passers-by described it as “very loud and very slow.” When strangers asked Batchelor to transport them to the ball, a new side hunt was born.

Batchelor spray-painted the APC with purple flowers and set up a flat-screen TV so passengers could easily watch it. Event planners take note – he runs a group trip to a wedding or even a funeral in the ‘tank taxi’. Up to 9 people can travel with some protection against potential fire with small arms. But they will not move very fast as the APC can only drive up to 20 mph.

Batchelor charges $ 830 for the first hour and $ 275 per extra hour. He plans to break out of the wedding and funeral and is working to get permission for additional events like birthday parties and bals.

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Such a wedding trip was made for his neighbors. As the bride told CBS News “When your neighbor buys a tank and your other half spends most of his time with that tank, it’s inevitable that you’re going to your wedding in a tank.”