Marcello Gandini's list of achievements includes the Lamborghini Miura and Countach, as well as the Lancia Stratos. Now, rumor has it that he's working on a new project, a top-secet car with composite bodywork.

However, according to AutoX (via Indian Autos Blog) it's not a supercar. It's a Tata city car.

This wouldn't be the first time Gandini turned his talents to a more proletarian vehicle--he also designed the Citroen BX and Renault 5 "Supercinq" compacts--but something about this car is a little suspect.

As noted on Green Car Reports, the image of Gandini pointing out a detail on the car's front bumper looks like it was Photoshopped. It would be very difficult for any person with normal arms to casually reach across the hood of a car--even a small city car--like Gandini is in the photo, and impossible to do it without casting a reflection in the car's bright bodywork.

Top-secret Tata composite car styled by Marcello Gandini?

Top-secret Tata composite car styled by Marcello Gandini?

The lighting isn't consistent either. Gandini is bathed in yellow light and is partially shadowed, while the car is fully illuminated by white light. Furthermore, Gandini hasn't confirmed his involvement with the project.

The car itself looks like someone transposed Countach design elements onto a Tata Nano. That low roofline doesn't offer much outward visibility even without part of a rear spoiler jutting down the sides, and those small doors will make getting in and out challenging, unless they open vertically.

All great myths have a glimmer of truth though. Tata is reportedly developing a composite car; the company believes it will cost less, require fewer body molds, and weigh 20 percent less than a steel-bodied car. A production version could be powered by a 1.0-liter supercharged engine.

Whether that car will look like the one depicted here, or whether Marcello Gandini had any involvement in its design, remains to be seen.


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