DesignRoman's Taxi is an Albany Esperanto (Albany being the ficticious name for Cadillac, this leads us to deduce that it is a Cadillac Seville or something similar) - due to the Albany badging, many people thought that it was actually called the Albany (which was probably its beta name, see Trivia). The car is visually distinguishable from the Esperanto by its minor alterations—red or yellow taxi emergency lights affixed to the front and back, taxi registration number on the trunk, advertising on the rear bumper and rear window, and a custom red interior. By default, Roman's Taxi is dark gray with a discolored gray driver's side front fender. It can be resprayed to other colors, and may be randomly resprayed back to its default appearance, except the driver's side fender will no longer be discolored.
Performance and handling-wise, Roman's Taxi is heavier than the Esperanto (1700 kg to the Esperanto's 1600 kg), and has inferior acceleration, but has a significantly greater top speed of 295 km/h (183mph) to the Esperanto's 218 km/h (135mph); it also has slightly stronger braking and softer suspension. The handling feels good and can go around a corner at 40 mph without much trouble.It is slightly less prone to deformation than the Esperanto, and can better withstand collisions.
Use as a taxi
Niko can call Roman to send a taxi to pick him up, after gaining his favor. The taxi driver is notoriously short-tempered, with the taxi rides peppered with insults hurled Niko's way for being a freeloader. After unlocking the Algonquin Safehouse (at which point Roman's business appears to have become highly successful), Roman's taxis are replaced by a fleet of gray Cavalcades, with the same disgruntled driver as before. After this, the car is no longer available, unless the player has saved one at a safehouse.
The car can be stolen by the player when it arrives after the player calls for one.
Unlike the other taxi there are a few advantages to using Roman's taxi.
- The ride no matter where or how long, is free of charge.
- The driver won't leave the car due to a wanted level.
- It is a good choice for a drive-by, having someone else drive.
- If you accidentally try to carjack the taxi, the doors will be locked so there is no wanted level for vehicle theft.
- The police can't arrest you as the doors are locked.
Roman's Taxi is the first vehicle that the player drives in Grand Theft Auto IV, and was prominently featured in pre-release materials, with the car initially painted with an all-black body color. It features as part of several early missions, including GTA IV's taxi side-mission.
- Albany may actually have been the true beta name of this car. First, it had been seen on pre-release pictures a long time before Rockstar Games decided to incorporate vehicle brands to the game. And secondly, inside the file "american.gxt", the car's text entry is under the name "ALBANY."
- When driving Roman's Taxi while being chased by the police, the police scanner will refer the car as "Roman's Esperanto". This may have been another beta name for it, considering it is obviously based on the Esperanto.
- The Roman's Taxi driven during "The Cousins Bellic" features an all-black body, as opposed to other occasions when the car features a discolored quarter panel. It is also notable that Roman's Taxi in the cutscene sports wheels from the Marbelle, as more that this was the beta model of the car.
- The default radio station in Roman's Taxi is Vladivostok FM.
- In The Lost and Damned, Roman's Taxi can be called in by dialing 555-2222 (the number given to Johnny by Elizabeta Torres earlier in the game) during the mission Roman's Holiday.
- Roman's Taxi does not have the same horn sound as the Esperanto.
- Roman's Taxi features the "Door Ajar" Chime which can be heard easily in the first mission "The Cousins Bellic". Before moving the vehicle, turn off your engine and get out without closing the door. With a turned up volume, you should hear the chime.
- Although Roman's Taxi always spawns in the default black paint job, it can be resprayed at a Pay 'n' Spray for a silver or red paintjob.
- After Blow Your Cover, Roman's Taxi will still be driven by Mohammed when Niko calls Roman for car service. Only after the Middle Park East Safehouse is unlocked following Hostile Negotiation will they be replaced with Cavalcades.
- It is possible to take the taxi on the mission Roman's Sorrow by leaving your car after the cutscene and taking the taxi instead. After the mission you can save the car at your Bohan Safehouse. Once you have completed all 30 of Stevie's Car Thefts you can then sell the Taxi to him for $2000
- The internal files of this car exists within The Ballad of Gay Tony, despite the fact it is never seen in the game. The reason for this is either Rockstar accidently forgot to remove the files, or it was supposed to be used or seen in the beta. With the use of modifications, you can spawn this car and drive it normally.