London black cab maker Manganese Bronze calls in the administrators

14:51 22 October 2012

The makers of the famous London taxis have gone into administration. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

The makers of the famous London taxis have gone into administration. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

The maker of the distinctive London taxi is to appoint administrators after it failed to secure a funding boost from one of its largest shareholders.

Coventry-based Manganese Bronze was reportedly in talks with Chinese private automaker Geely, which owns a 20% stake in the firm, over a £15 million loan.

But the group, which recently recalled 500 black cabs due to a steering box fault, said it had been unable to secure funding with various parties and will bring in administrators.

Manganese, which employs nearly 300 staff and traces its roots to the 19th century as a maker of ship propellers, recently reported wider half-year losses of £3.6 million.

Earlier this month, Manganese Bronze said it had discovered a defect with new steering boxes in its TX4 models, which were introduced in production at its Coventry factory in late February.

Manganese said it discovered the fault after two cab drivers reported problems with steering, but stressed there had been no crashes or injuries as a result.

It warned that the recall and sales suspension would have a “material and detrimental” impact on its cashflow and said it was looking at options for the firm.

The group is urgently contacting drivers of the 400 affected vehicles to make sure they are taken off the road.

In its statement today, Manganese added that a “speedy resolution” of the product recall remained a top priority for the group, which will continue throughout the administration process.

It said it “remains hopeful that the fundamental strengths of the company, the TX4 model and its global reputation will provide the platform for a successful business in the future”.

Manganese has been loss-making for the past four years as its London Taxi arm has been hit by a consumer spending slowdown and increased rivalry from competitors, such as Eco City vehicles.

The group’s London Taxi Company division makes about 2,700 cabs a year and has produced more than 100,000 since it started in 1948. Its newest model, the TX4, was launched in October 2006.

Latest Stories

Planned engineering works could affect your journey this weekend.

There is a relatively minor programme of planned closures on the Tube and Overground network this weekend - but they could still affect your journey. Read on for the lowdown.

Read more
The woman told officers she was raped after a man approached her from behind in Charnwood Road in Uxbridge this morning (Picture: Google StreetView)

A woman was raped by as she walked along a quiet residential street in Uxbridge in the early hours of this morning, say police.

Read more
This touching letter was written in 1914 from an RAF ground crew member just before he went to war [Photo courtesy of RAF Museum]

As the nation remembers the centenary of the First World War, we wanted to share this heartbreaking letter sent by Air Mechanic Raymond Keith Barlow to his ‘mam’ back home just before he leaves for the war. He reassures her that the war will soon be over and asks her to give some money to a relative – but he never made it home.

Read more

TOP Stories

Planned engineering works could affect your journey this weekend.

There is a relatively minor programme of planned closures on the Tube and Overground network this weekend - but they could still affect your journey. Read on for the lowdown.

The woman told officers she was raped after a man approached her from behind in Charnwood Road in Uxbridge this morning (Picture: Google StreetView)

A woman was raped by as she walked along a quiet residential street in Uxbridge in the early hours of this morning, say police.

This touching letter was written in 1914 from an RAF ground crew member just before he went to war [Photo courtesy of RAF Museum]

As the nation remembers the centenary of the First World War, we wanted to share this heartbreaking letter sent by Air Mechanic Raymond Keith Barlow to his ‘mam’ back home just before he leaves for the war. He reassures her that the war will soon be over and asks her to give some money to a relative – but he never made it home.

From September 16, you will no longer have to rely on this piece of blue plastic to get you places [Picture by Dominic Lipinski/PA]

Finally! From September 16, you will be able to use your contactless bank card to pay for journeys on the Tube, the DLR, the Overground and London trams, instead of your Oyster card.

The 'fire ants' were first found in this country when a colony of 35,000 were electrocuted gnawing through wires at a National Trust property in Gloucestershire [Photo courtesy of April Nobile / © AntWeb.org]

Hate creepy-crawlies? Then look away now! There are fears that ‘super ants’ who are attracted to electricity and cause fires are coming to London, after a colony was found in a house in Hendon.

The boy was killed after a collision in St John Fisher Road, near the junction with Kale Road (Picture: Google StreetView)

A six-year-old boy died after being hit by a car in south east London as he walked along the road with his mum yesterday evening.

Cyclists of all ages and abilities can take part in the Prudential RideLondon events (Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images)

The capital’s cycling festival is back this year bigger and better, so we’ve put together a handy guide with everything you need to know about Prudential RideLondon 2014:

Promotions

Renault Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the Zoe was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

Always wanted to create your own beer? Perfect Pint are giving you the chance.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

The Week subscription offer

London24 have partnered up with The Week magazine to offer you a complimentary issue – delivered free to your door.

Quizzes

How much do you really know about QPR legends like Les Ferdinand? Picture: Neal Simpson/EMPICS Sport

Test your knowledge of QPR’s greatest players with our fantastic legends quiz.

Read more
How much do you know about films in London? (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

Do you know your Lock Stock from your Long Good Friday, Sliding Doors from Shakespeare in Love?

Read more
How much about this great city do you really know? Take our true Londoner quiz and find out (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Do you know your apples from your pears? Take our Cockney quiz and see how much of a Londoner you really are.

Read more
Guess the manager quiz. Here's a hint, it's not these four.

The managerial merry-go-round spins quickly these days so do you think you’ve got the knowledge to recognise the faces of all these football bosses?

Read more
A normal day at London Liverpool Street station

This quiz is for people who think they know the Tube and rail inside out.

Read more