• Sep 4, 2009
Gordon Murray's iCentre - Click above to enlarge

Gordon Murray hopes his developing T.25 minicar will offer something unique to attract buyers away from cars like the Smart Fortwo and Toyota iQ. To that end, the diminutive machine will seat three occupants with the driver front-and-center behind a mid-mounted steering wheel in an arrangement Murray calls iCentre. Out back, two seats flank that single drivers perch, which puts the T.25 directly between the two-seat Smart Fortwo and four-seat (or, 3+1 as Toyota puts it) iQ. This is a similar arrangement to that of the iconic McLaren F1 that Murray also designed, and that's good company to be in.

There will be six different seating and cargo arrangements to choose from that can be configured in under 30 seconds. Despite seating one additional passenger than the Smart, the T.25 will reportedly offer more total interior volume – up to 750 liters in "Shopping Mode" without the rear passengers – and luggage carrying capacity than its main competitor. To access the vehicle, there will reportedly be two doors, one in the traditional hatchback location and another echoing the old BMW Isetta by opening on a hinge at the very front of the car.

There's no guarantee that Murray's innovative T.25 microcar will ever see the light of day. The designer has no intention of actually building the automobile himself – instead, Murray hopes to sell the rights to build the car using his equally impressive (or so we hear) iStream production method to a number of third-party assemblers, possibly even brands like Apple, Virgin or Sony. Click past the break for an official press release.

PRESS RELEASE:

GORDON MURRAY DESIGN REVEAL T.25 CITY CAR SEATING LAYOUT


Gordon Murray Design's T.25 City Car is not only designed around a central driving position but an MPV package offering 6 internal layouts within the same vehicle, each layout being easily achieved within 30 seconds.

The T.25 City Car has been packaged to accept three 95th percentile occupants and the central driving position has been named 'iCentre®', although the actual concept dates back to 1966 when Gordon Murray first came up with the idea during his Mechanical Engineering studies at Durban Institute of Technology in South Africa. The three-seat configuration was put into production with the McLaren F1 and then resurrected in 1999 during the original study for Murray's City Car - then known as Project 3.

The central driving position gives unparalleled control and visibility whilst supporting the ultra-flexible interior space. This gives the T.25 a potential market advantage over the Smart Fortwo which is purely a two-seater with a small luggage capacity. In maximum 'shopping mode' the T.25 can be driver only but offers 750 litres of stowage space which is equal to 6 shopping trolleys in volume!

The two pedal vehicle does not have a gear lever but instead relies on push buttons with the options of fully automatic or manual using Forward, Reverse & Neutral.

Gordon Murray Design are currently in discussions with several interested parties to move the car into production using the iStream® Manufacturing process. iStream® is a unique, innovative method of producing cars invented by Gordon Murray Design which, amongst other things, reduces the area and investment of a typical car factory by 80%
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  • 29 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Considering his prior body of work I think it would be wise to at least give it a shot before taking a big dump on the design. He's a talented fellow. The concept is sound. I expect it to be well thought out regardless of whether it's the perfect car for everyone on this board.
      • 5 Years Ago
      re the name. T25 meansType25. This is the 25th vehicle Gordon has designed. A significant number of engineers at GMD are ex McLaren F1 btw.
      • 5 Years Ago
      You know, I kind of like it. Seems like the kind of modification that is actually useful in the auto-biz. Nice out-of-the-box thinking. Not like some of these past their prime mods:
      http://www.cargurus.com/blog/2009/09/04/worst-car-modifications-ever
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks great.. well, i'd be saying that if autoblog updated the photos from CAR:

      http://www.carmagazine.co.uk/Secret-new-cars/Search-Results/Spyshots/Gordon-Murray-gives-CAR-a-guided-tour-of-the-T25/

      Very excited about this, esp if it begins production.

      *rear-mounted 660cc variable-valve-timing Mitsubishi engine available in turbocharged and normally aspirated forms

      *The sub-600kg supermini will carry three people and more luggage than a Toyota iQ or Smart ForTwo while giving 80mpg and a dynamic drive Murray says rivals are missing.
      (dynamic, Murray? I trust 'em)

      *'We’ve had 20 inquiries from 15 different countries; only seven are existing car producers,' he said. 'We’ve had governments saying "we need a car for our cities". But equally you could start seeing cars coming from brand owners like Apple or Virgin or Sony.'

      Sounds very cool.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I want it I want it I want it!
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is great. Exactly how the Smart should've been done instead of it being a sit-up-and-beg roadster.
      • 5 Years Ago
      One main issue. Too many i's. iCentre, iStream...

      Stop teasing us. Stop the marketing names. Just give us a real life example of this car.

      http://www.carnorama.com
        • 5 Years Ago
        Odd that the story says it has an Isetta-type front door and the "real-life example" clearly doesn't.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hi Zamafir.

        Yes I know. I meant real life as in real world i.e. assembly line working, driving around, etc, etc.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You might want to check the post above your's, we've had photos of a real life example for a week:

        http://www.carmagazine.co.uk/upload/20532/images/GordonMurrayT25citycar02.jpg
        • 5 Years Ago
        @why not the LS2LS7? - get the distinct impression autoblog's just very averse to reading CAR's stuff for whatever reason.

        @Luso - I wouldn't be surprised if there was one at Frankfurt, he's been spending many years working on this, the interviews are pretty cool to listen to. Completely rethinking suspension geometry etc. Very Very out of the box.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Is it me or is this thing taking longer than the 2007 Camaro? Regardless, it will be worth the wait; the fiat abarth of the 21st century.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Where is the V12 at?
      • 5 Years Ago
      When anyone, including Murray name drops potential customers (in this case customers for the design), you should run in fear. Especially when it is pie-in-the-sky names like this. Especially when the person refers to companies like Apple and Virgin that don't manufacture a single thing (both outsource all production) as 'third-party assemblers'.
        • 5 Years Ago
        If Apple were to buy a product design and then have someone else manufacture it, that would be OEMing products. Apple doesn't OEM products (anymore, hasn't for decades).

        On top of this, it is ridiculous to even think Apple is interesting in making a car!

        He's just name dropping to make his product seem like it has acceptance with the "cool kids" already.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They have them as buyers of the design. They will outsource the mfg of the car. look at the iphone and ipod. They are apple products, but not made by apple. Apple will do what they do best, market the product and outsource the mfg of the car to others.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Impractical, how would getting into that thing go? Certainly not gracefully, that's for sure. It's one thing to make an ass of yourself getting into a car like the F1, but to do so getting into an economy car is a whole different story.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I only count four seating positions. The top three images carry the same amount of people and cargo, just with different size occupants. I can appreciate that the interior is configurable for people or stuff, but the marketing department for the T.25 needs to stop working the math. By this math, your typical 5-seat sedan carrying two adults in front and three occupants in back has four seating positions.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You've seen booster seats and infant seats, right?
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