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Car by Toyota, cabin by Aston Martin

Aston Martin announces the concept Cygnet, an economical luxury car based on the Toyota iQ.

Wayne Cunningham Managing Editor / Roadshow
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham

Aston Martin Cygnet concept
Aston Martin engineers work on the concept Cygnet. Aston Martin

There's an old joke, part of which says that in hell, the cooks are English. If that's true, then today's news suggests our world is far from fiery. Aston Martin has taken Toyota's iQ small car platform and built a luxury commuter car.

Aston Martin suggests the iQ-based concept Cygnet would work like a yacht's tender to a DB9, DBS, or Vantage. There is even a suggestion in Aston Martin's press release that the Cygnet could be sold as an option to one of Aston Martin's bigger cars.

We like the idea that a luxury car doesn't have to be a huge gas guzzler. Lexus is already exploiting that theme with its new HS 250h. And we can imagine that a fuel-sipping iQ would be quite nice fitted with wood and leather coachwork, a pothole-absorbing suspension, and sound-deadening cabin. Especially as dense traffic in urban areas means you're not exactly tapping the 470 horsepower available in a DB9.