Pursuing urban mobility

PUBLISHED : Friday, 25 November, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 25 November, 2011, 12:00am


Some car lovers scratched their heads when Aston Martin announced it would make a small city car. But if Porsche and Ferrari can make plush four-seaters, a baby Aston might make sense.

After all, BMW revived Mini, Mercedes-Benz has long backed the smart, and the Fiat 500 and Mito prove how small cars can be stylish and popular, if they are well-finished and comfortable. So Aston Martin teamed up with Toyota and rebadged its 1.3-litre iQ with a luxurious rebuild.

The Cygnet is reported to hit 100km/h in about 11.6 seconds, has a top speed of 170km/h, consumes 5.2 litres of petrol per 100km and spews but 116 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometre, but the model's all about feel-good swish and looks.

'Hand-crafted in over 150 hours by the makers of the Zagato, Virage and DBS at Aston Martin's Gaydon headquarters, the Cygnet shares much in terms of design and craftsmanship with the company's sports cars,' the marque says. 'Like every Aston Martin it can be personalised to suit individual taste and style, bringing a new level of luxury and custom-made capability to city cars.'

Unashamedly aimed at the rich, the runabout was even world-premiered at Harrods last year.

Now available for order at HK$660,000 for automatic versions and HK$630,000 for variants with a manual gearbox in Hong Kong, the Cygnet has been spotted around town.

The three-metre, four-seater's grille is unmistakably 'Aston' and its elongated side strake and inverted rear lights suggest a stronger road presence than the average runabout.

The Cygnet is also fitted with sophisticated active and passive safety technology to protect the driver, passengers and pedestrians.

It features a range of up-to-the-minute technology rarely seen in urban runabouts, from essential electronics such as the anti-lock braking system, to nine airbags, stability control, electronic brake assist and retractable door mirrors.

Inside, the Cygnet has keyless entry and start, heated seats and satellite navigation in plush Aston luxury.

Models have been unveiled in Launch Edition White and Launch Edition Black, and in June Aston Martin collaborated with Parisian fashion authority colette to produce the limited edition 'Cygnet & colette' luxury city car.