Say the name, Aston Martin, and it invariably brings up images of the most exclusive automotive products, like the DB9 or Vanquish, vehicles that can push into the $250,000 territory.
So what is Aston doing with the Cygnet, which it is billing as an “innovative commuter car concept”? There’s a lot of interest in basic, around-town transportation, these days, but most offerings are rather basic affairs, like the Smart fortwo or the Think City electric vehicle. Has the British maker found a way to make the terms, luxury and commuter car, synonymous rather than mutually exclusive?
It should help that Aston has turned for help to Toyota, maker of the Yaris, Venza and other forms of basic, around-town transportation. While the British marque isn’t offering many details, it does confirm that the Cygnet concept is based on the Japanese maker’s pint-sized iQ, a 3-door hatchback that was first introduced at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show. Measuring just 117.5 inches, nose-to-tail, iQ went on sale in Japan in late 2008, and in the U.K., this past January.
“Now is the right time for Aston Martin to take this first bold step to embark on this special project,” said Aston CEO Ulrich Bez, in a prepared release, adding “Much work is still required, but I am confident that this project could become reality in the not too distant future. This concept – akin to an exclusive tender to a luxury yacht – will allow us to apply Aston Martin design language, craftsmanship and brand values to a completely new segment of the market.”