We've been hearing rumblings that BMW and Fiat were working together on the development of future small vehicle platforms for a while now. With the German automaker working on an Isetta revival and the Italian firm moving forward with a new Topolino, it makes some sense that the two companies would join forces on a single platform sharedbetween the two small retromobiles.
According to Auto Express in the U.K., work is far enough along that we could see both new city cars by 2011. If current rumors are accurate, the cars will feature a rear-mounted engine and four seats, putting the machines on par with the new Toyota iQ and upcoming Up! from Volkswagen. AE says that light weight would be ensured through the use of aluminum and carbon fiber for the chassis and possibly even plastic bodywork, and if that's the case, we can't see these being anything less than premium-priced.
An electric drivetrain featuring one motor for each of the four wheels and a thin battery pack sandwiched under the passenger compartment is also likely. If there's any truth to these rumors, we could see a concept vehicle on the new platform wearing a Mini badge at the Frankfurt Motor Show later this year.
[Source: Auto Express]