Renowned Formula One race car and supercar designer Gordon Murray who gained fame for his involvement in the iconic McLaren F1 project, has finally taken the wraps off his latest creation [after more than two years of teasing], the T.25 city car.
Measuring 2.4 meters or 94.5-inches in length, 1.3 meters or 51.2-inches in width and 1.5 meters or 59-inches in height, the T.25 is smaller than Smart's minuscule Fortwo, yet Murray has managed to fit in three seats in a McLaren F1-style 1+2 layout with the driver sitting in the center of the car. The two passenger seats can be folded down allowing a luggage capacity of 720 liters.
Instead of using traditional doors, Murray opted to utilize the entire front section of the T.25 that pivots forward to allow entry into the car.
The small city car is powered by a 660cc three-cylinder engine located in the rear. It produces an output of 51HP at 7,000 rpm and 57Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm, and is linked to a five-speed semi-automatic transmission.
Tipping the scales at around 575kg or 1,268 lbs, the T.25 accelerates from zero to 100km/h (62mph) in 16.2 seconds and reaches a limited top speed of 145km/h (90mph). Fuel economy is estimated at about 74mpg UK, which is equal to 3.8 lt/100km and 61.9mpg US.
If all goes well, Murray aims to have the T.25 ready for production by 2012.
From Gordin Murray Design: T.25 USP's and Key Features
- The T.25 represents a major breakthrough in City Car design and is a vehicle that has been optimised through design for strength, performance, weight, cost, safety, usability, tooling, quality, energy efficiency, recyclable and ease of assembly.
- The T.25 external dimensions create the opportunity to:
- park at 90 degrees to the curb, offering real consumer benefits,
- park up to 3 cars in one parallel parking space - giving rise to lower parking charges.
- increase traffic flow,
- explore the possibility of 2 vehicles travelling and overtaking in one conventional lane. Combining this with the car length has the potential to triple lane usage at peak times.
- reduce the environmental impact of vehicle manufacture (ie: lower material content etc) and day-to-day operation.
- The central driving position generates:
- A unique, 'cool' and fun driving experience,
- promotes safety and ease of parking as a result of excellent all-round visibility and road awareness,
- the opportunity to offer a single-seater option with retrofit bolt-in rear seats,
- class-leading rear passenger leg room (better than most 'B-Segment' cars).
- By virtue of the unique door opening system, the T.25 can:
- be parked in very close proximity to other objects and still allow occupants to enter and exit the vehicle. This gives rise to,
- park 2 in one domestic garage,
- allow occupants access from both sides of the vehicle,
- allow easy access to the driver's seat and easy access to the rear child seats.
- The ultra lightweight by design (approximately 550kg) means that:
- component life is increased
- reduced energy is required to power vehicle, giving rise to higher fuel efficiency (mpg/electric battery range).
- a competitive power to weight ratio is achieved
- A world-leading 6 metre turning circle will enhance urban manoeuvring and parking.
- Body panels in the lower periphery of the car are all mechanically affixed and have split lines which are sympathetic to accident damage replacement, leading to rapid assembly times and low cost accident repair.
- First car in class to feature lightweight, low cost independent rear suspension.
- Wing mirrors are within the overall width of the body, thereby minimising accidental damage and subsequent mirror replacement.
- Design for purpose means that the vehicle has excellent pedestrian impact qualities.
- The inclusion of Formula 1 derived materials philosophy and technology coupled with chassis frame design ('Direct Load Path') gives an immensely strong structure ('safety cell') both in 'end' and 'side' impact scenarios. This is also designed to meet the cost targets of high volume production.
- Flat under-floor improves aerodynamic efficiency.
- Class-leading vehicle dynamics
- High level turn indicators for good visibility.
- Positioning of the fuel filler permits refueling from either side of the vehicle.
- Centralised driving instrumentation and controls are designed to maximize drive control.
- Six internal layout options with rear seat adjustment (adjustable within 20 seconds) sets new standards in small vehicle packaging – a long way in front of the Smart For 2 and the Toyota iQ.
- Occupant capacity of between 1 and 3 persons. Luggage capacity of between 160 litres and 720 litres.
- The T.25 has the potential to be first to market for a new "World Car Class" for efficient vehicles, demonstrating new levels of efficiency and low emissions – creating excellent publicity and marketing opportunities.