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Aston Cygnet city car spreads its wings

In Black and White: You can have Aston’s new baby Cygnet in any colour you like at launch, as long as it is black or white.

Aston Martin opens Cygnet order book in Europe with two special editions

21 Jan 2011

BRITISH supercar manufacturer Aston Martin has announced that its diminutive Toyota iQ-based Cygnet city car will go into production in April, beginning with a limited run of special editions named Cygnet Launch Edition White and Cygnet Launch Edition Black.

The brand is now taking orders through dealerships across Europe, with an international roll-out planned for 2012, when Australian deliveries are expected to commence.

UK Cygnet prices start at £30,995 ($A49,868), more than two and a half times that of the top-spec iQ donor car, which is already pricey for its size at more than £12,000 (A$19,307.

Aston Martin thoroughly re-works the donor iQ at its high-tech production facility in Gaydon, Warwickshire, and makes much of the craftsmanship that goes into the transformation.

It adds unmistakeable Aston styling to the car’s exterior and kits out the inside with luxury materials like leather, Alcantara and chrome. Aston’s personalisation service will also be offered on this car.

The Black edition is finished in metallic black paint with a matt effect for the bonnet louvres and chrome accents for the air intakes, wing vents, door handles and badging. The exterior paint also has what Aston calls a “specially developed deep-sea green effect”.

44 center imageThe iQ’s spartan interior is transformed with a black leather-trimmed dash, full leather upholstery and dark chrome highlights. That said, it is easy to spot the iQ carry-overs when compared side-by-side, and Aston has apparently done little to improve on the standard Toyota switchgear.

Echoing the White edition’s exterior colour, the interior gets Pearl White leather for most contact surfaces, with perforated Alcantara inserts and satin-finish chrome brightwork.

Both models get diamond-turned alloy wheels and subtle matt-finish parallel body stripes running from the bottom of the front air dam, across the roof and down the tailgate.

A set of bespoke leather Bill Amberg luggage comprising a glove box gag, door pocket bag, holdall, garment bag and collapsible tote bag is also included. In addition, the images also show a Garmin satellite navigation unit sprouting from an area of leather trim on the dash.

The Cygnet’s drivetrain remains unchanged from Toyota’s original 1.33-litre unit, and is available with a choice of manual or CVT transmissions.

It also benefits from the iQ’s four-metre turning circle and safety kit, comprising nine airbags, stability control and brake assist.

A predicted CO2 figure of 116g/km is slightly up on the equivalent iQ’s 113g/km, owing to the extra weight of the luxury kit and possibly reduced aerodynamics caused by the styling.

As GoAuto has reported, the Cygnet was presented as a concept at last year’s Geneva show.

While Aston says the Cygnet is an opportunity to attract new people to the brand while also offering existing customers a convenient city alternative to its sports cars, it also conveniently serves to help Aston Martin meet corporate average fuel economy and emissions targets now that it doesn’t have former parent company Ford’s low-emission models to spread the load.

On its public site, Aston Martin says it “strives for continuous improvement in its environmental performance and Cygnet is a bold step towards achieving those goals.” The famous marque sold 121 cars in Australia last year, an increase of 63.5 per cent.

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