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While rumors of the new BMW sub-brand have been floating around for months, February 21st has been marked as the official announcement date for details the sub-brand, and the apparently revolutionary MegaCity electric vehicle.
Many suggest that the new sub-brand will be a re-imagining of the Isetta microcar of nearly a half century ago, and use some of the advanced materials that the Megacity also uses. Smaller internal combustion engines are a possibility, with the MegaCity setting itself apart by using the all electric drivetrain used in the BMW ActiveE.
The Honda Brio was apparently inspired by the Citroen 2CV, as evidenced by its codename during development. Of course, the Brio is based on a much more conventional layout, but the ultra-compact dimensions, measuring 142 inches in length and 66 inches wide. For comparison, a Smart ForTwo is 106.1 inches long but 61.4 inches wide, making the Brio a sort of four-door equivalent.
The Brio was designed for the Thai and Indian markets, and the primary concern was navigating their tight urban areas. Priced at around $13,000 USD, the Brio will likely never make it to our shores, but as the demand for small vehicles grows, perhaps an Americanized version may one day show up.
Gordon Murray is eager to stress that his firm, Gordon Murray Design, is not in the business of producing cars, especially not his new T25 city car. “We’re not a car company; our business is selling intellectual property for the production process,” Murray told Auto Express.
Murray’s proclamation comes on the heels of his announcement that he has already sold the design of the T25 to an unnamed European company and a Japanese design firm, but Murray won’t reveal their identities. With the T25, and his new iStream manufacturing process, Murray is pursuing a new business model, whereby a design is licensed to several different companies who produce their own version of the car.
After he finishes the electric version of the T25, dubbed the T27, Murray said that he will build a superlight Mazda MX5 rival as well as a supercar to compete with the McLaren MP4-12C.