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Aston Martin working on Toyota iQ-based minicar

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Aston Martin promises its Cygnet city car will be customized by owners - so why not just give them out for free with every Rapide?

Aston Martin promises its Cygnet city car will be customized by owners - so why not just give them out for free with every Rapide?

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This is not a joke. Aston Martin has joined forces with Toyota to develop a new minicar model called the Cygnet and this is the first official image of the bespoke hatch, taken as designers at Aston Martin’s Gaydon headquarters refine its final shape. The Cygnet is based on Toyota’s iQ minicar and although it’s still in the concept stage, the green light for production is expected to be given before the end of the year.

As revealed by the teaser image, the Cygnet will adopt some very distinct Aston Martin trademarks to differentiate it from its Toyota sibling. The vehicle is being designed for Europe but other details such as the launch date, price and production volumes have not been decided.

The car on which it is based, the iQ, measures just three meters in length, is powered by a three-cylinder engine and has a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. The Cygnet is expected to keep most of these attributes, but its interior is expected to be as luxurious as that found in any other Aston Martin model.

In an official statement, Aston Martin CEO Ulrich Bez said: "Much work is still required, but I am confident that this project could become reality in the not-too-distant future."

The reasoning behind the partnership is to enable Aston Martin to comply with tough new fuel economy and emissions regulations coming into effect in Europe by 2012. The biggest hurdle for automakers will be to meet a target for fleet average CO2 emissions from new vehicles of 120g/km by 2012. Low volume automakers such as Aston Martin, Ferrari and Lamborghini, which only sell powerful vehicles with high CO2 emissions will be hit hardest. Unlike Aston Martin, however, rivals like Ferrari and Lamborghini can group their CO2 emissions levels with their respective parent companies, in this case the Fiat and Volkswagen groups.

However, not just anyone will be able to buy a Cygnet. In order to be eligible to buy one, customers must already own an Aston Martin. The luxury automaker has identified that around 30% of existing customers have small cars such as a Mini or Smart ForTwo in their garages for city traffic.
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Comments (17)
  1. An Aston for the masses, Wow... but does Aston Martin really want to build this car and maybe destroy their very exclusive and rich clientele?
    Also think that by not owning an Aston Martin would you be able to acquire this Cygnet, there are lots of other ways..
     
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  2. thats honestly disgusting
     
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  3. So how is Ferrari going to escape the new emissions rules? Are they going to build a small car too? A Ferrari Fiat 500.... I don't like where this is going...
     
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  4. That looks like some kind of Chinese cartoon character with the big bug-eyed look.
     
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  5. This has got to be a joke, please tell me it's April Fool's Day somewhere?

    Well, if not, then Smart is planning to do a Mustang Eleanor as well:



    This is just wrong, wrong WRONG!
     
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  6. Dear Aston-Matin,
    Please cease and desist your project with regard to the iQ.
    Otherwise, we may see the end of Aston-Martin's hayday.
    This car bears no lineage whatsoever with the elegant, flowing, proud designs of old. This car is an embarassment to the Aston-Martin name.
    For the love of everything good, holy, and as gorgeous as the DB9, please stop.
    Thank you.
     
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  7. i think Aston Martin just destroy its name and image.and that's coming from some one who owns a Aston Martin DBS.
     
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  8. I think it's clever to allow only existing AM customers to buy one - that reduces the risk of a tarnished image... until these cars get to the second-hand market. Maybe the cars will have to be leased.
     
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  9. I fail to remember how many times I've mentioned that AM's cars are badge engineered throughout their entire line-up. Although this would be a first thats not one of their current platforms.

    In regards to keeping their latest abortion exclusive a lease is their only option where they then turn around and destroy the car (hopefully) at the end of the lease. Otherwise these will be parked in a trailer park near you sooner than you think!!!!

    Of all the ways to prove your the king of badge engineering I'll have to give them an A+.....
     
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  10. I agree with a reader up there, this is disgusting.

    On the other hand, other venerable marques like MB & BMW have lent their hallowed names to veritable pieces of crap on wheels, no matter how well engineered they may have been.

    So if BMW doesn't flinch at creating something like the X1 and Audi doesn't think about it twice before putting their name on the A1, why wouldn't Aston Martin follow suit?
     
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  11. If you ask me, it is not the small cars that wreck these brands' images, it is the frigging SUV/"crossover" crapola they have been peddling lately.
     
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  12. OMG, if this is true, Austin martin is going to be the joke of the auto industry.
     
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  13. it's not really a bad idea, if there is a market for it, then why not get it? the cygnet will be exclusive for aston martin owners anyway. i think it's a good idea but they should think of the design well
     
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  14. AS should price it around the 250k mark to ensure that no one actually buys it but its mere existence in the line up is enough to bring the CO2 average down.
     
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  15. No one is building luxury small cars for short city commutes. What’s wrong if Austin Martin can break into a new niche market that no one has tapped since the demise of Mini Mayfair some long time ago

    I think could a good idea to only lease these cars to existing AM owners and avoid the risk of a tarnished image, if these hit the second-hand market.

    I agree with taksan. They should think of the design well.
     
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  16. They could have used a better starting car for this piece of crap. If I owned an Aston Martin I wouldn't be seen dead in something that looks like a pimp my ride IQ!

    A Fiesta atleast, considering still minor Ford ties, or a Mini. A Mini could have worked well, bespoke interior more 'Astony' lines. Even the badges aren't too different and price it at £25k.
     
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  17. A great competitor to the Smart Car. “The offering of a ‘Cygnet’ with a DBS, DB9 or Vantage is a unique combination of opposites and a novel transport solution allowing intelligent and sensitive mobility on an exclusive and innovative level.”
     
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