Aston Cygnet dives into new market

2011-10-25 08:36

If anyone had told a car enthusiast 10 years ago that supercar maker Aston Martin would be selling a tiny hatchback they'd have laughed. Sadly, like many premium brands, Aston Martin has felt the pinch of the recession and opted to downsize its models with launch of its Cygnet city car.

The new luxury city car, based on the Toyota iQ concept, sports all the elements of a typical Aston - including a serious price tag... the equivalent of R612 000 in the right-hand drive Hong Kong market.


The cars were launched in Europe earlier in 2011 but are now entering China and Japan as a compact city car designed to be a daily runabout for green-friendly buyers who apparently have access to a trust fund.

The model is currently offered in two distinctive and limited (50 models) launch editions - Black and White.

As to be expected from the British automaker, the Cygnet is clearly recognisable as an Aston Martin with the brand's design language and craftsmanship evident throughout. The marque’s signature details such as the metal grille, elongated sides and inverted rear lights give it an assertive stance.

Aston Martin Cygnet

RACE COLLECTION: If you're not sold on the launch edition White or Black specifications, the Cygent is also available in six "Race Collection" paint schemes.

The city car Cygnet has ABS, nine airbags, stability control, electronic brake assist and retractable door mirrors. Inside you'll be treated a luxury interior featuring keyless entry, heated seats, and a high level of trim all packed into a vehicle that is three metres long.

The White variant is finished in a Snow White paint job with a mix of silver mesh, chrome highlights and alloy wheels. The interior of the White edition features seats hand trimmed in Pearl white leather with perforated Alcantara inserts, complemented by satin chrome. Even the marque iconic wings badge has been finished in white.

In contrast, the Black edition features a metallic black paintjob with a specially developed deep sea green effect, offset by matt black louvers and chrome highlights. Inside, the seats and dash are finished in pure black full grain leather, perforated in a specially-developed diamond pattern. Satin chrome accents adorn the cabin, while the badges are rendered in black throughout.

The models laucnhed in Hong Hong and Japan, feature a Bill Amberg five-piece luggage set comprising of a glove box bag, removable door pocket bag, holdall, garment bag and a collapsible tote bag.

No word yet as to whether the new model will be arriving in South Africa...

  • Fanie - 2011-10-25 09:02


      christo.stone - 2011-10-25 09:09

      Indeed...they are out of their mind.

      naolifant - 2011-10-25 10:09

      and you thought we have problems in this country

      Werner - 2011-10-25 10:31

      Anyone who owns this car either got it as a gift or has no perception of a) money, or b) what ELSE you can get for R 600,000! I actually saw this on Top Gear a long while back and the reason for Aston's entry into the small car market was because they had to comply with gas emission laws or something. Apparently the need to make this to bring their average gas emission down across their range. Something like that. Either way...I don't care if this car is amphibious or comes with rocket launchers. Sales should be poor, one would think?

      Werner - 2011-10-25 10:34

      One more thing. Just imagine owning one of these and someone at a party asking you what you drive. You can say 'I drive an Aston Martin!'. 'Oh, really? A DB9? V8 Vantage? DBS?'. Oops.

      Guy - 2011-10-25 16:33

      They don't have a choice, all car manufacturers have to get to within the prescribed CO2 emissions over the entire range of vehicles produced. VW and the bigger firms are ok - Polo Vivo, Blue Motion etc, so they can get away with producing a Audi R8 V10. Aston don't have smaller fuel efficient cars, so to continue making V8, V10, V12 monsters, they need to produce the above... Its a shame really...

  • Mogo - 2011-10-25 09:16

    WoW... The most expensive, unattractive, the smallest and least powerful "Toyota"..

  • DASTIG - 2011-10-25 09:17

    Only idiots will buy this car at R612 000 are they mental and its pretty much the same as the Toyota Aygo, Citroen C1 and Peugoet 107 which go for around R120 000 don't get it talk about paying for the brand name.

  • wehan.victor - 2011-10-25 09:23

    I just lost a bit of respect for AM...

  • Richard - 2011-10-25 09:35

    this car is not based on the aygo

      raath - 2011-10-25 11:15

      you are right, it is based on the Toyota iQ

  • naolifant - 2011-10-25 09:48

    they should at least have made a hybrid SUV, request a Range's Evoque platform. Imagine a hatch back Ferrari based on the Fiat Palio or a Lambo hatch based on the Up!

  • Lourens - 2011-10-25 10:58

    Also remember it is not just the price tag that is madness. Imagine the insurance premium per month on this as it is still an Aston Martin with service costs of thousands of rands.

  • Mogo - 2011-10-25 11:03

    Well put it this way, atleast all the service parts will be taken from the Toyota bin, so this should actually be the 'cheapest' MOST expensive car to maintain.

  • darryn.padayachee - 2011-10-25 11:35

    It's NOT based on the Aygo!! it's based on the Toyota IQ! please get your facts right!

  • darryn.padayachee - 2011-10-25 11:41

    and another thing! they were not made because of the recession! the vehicle was introduced to bring down the average emmisions of the Aston brand as motor vehicle companies need to attain a certain overall emmisions level.

  • darryn.padayachee - 2011-10-25 12:10

    Aston will also not sell you a Cygnet unless you already own another Aston Martin product...i think this is something that you should of included in your article.

      francoisswart0 - 2011-10-26 12:56

      Well spotted Darren, iwas just about to make the comment myself, definitely something they should have mentioned in the article

  • Miguel - 2011-10-25 12:44

    R.612 000 for a rebadged Toyota Aygo? Wait for one to get scrapped, buy an Aygo and transfer the Aston badges and grille.

  • Dumisani - 2011-10-25 12:59

    shouldnt have built it. looks so cheap n common.

  • Derick - 2011-10-25 13:04

    My mother would most probably comment: “awh what a nice looking Toyota yaris” uhm mom….

  • Wendy - 2011-10-25 13:11

    And it's UGLY

  • arpegiator - 2011-10-25 13:25

    It looks a lot like the new KIA Picanto, and you can get one of those for about R100K Who will pay R600K for a tiny city car?

  • Caleb - 2011-10-25 14:02

    The reason for the Cygnet is not for reasons of sales, it is purely for reasons of emmissions. Aston Martin's mainstay vehicles produce unacceptably high co2 emmissions, so the cygnet is there purely to bring down the overall company average c02 emmissions. All manufactures do it. It will only be offered to owners of current Aston Martin's.

      Werner - 2011-10-25 14:15

      Yeah, the emissions thing I knew. Didn't know it was only on offer to current owners of Aston Martins? They're probably the very guys who won't buy it. Can't imagine if I had a V8 Vantage I'd be into an overpriced, uninspiring, dull-looking, tiny hatchback.

  • Sean - 2011-10-25 14:10

    There is NO way in hell I would buy this for that price!! Just to say I have an Aston? Nope - I could get a damn good deal on a Range Rover with a few KMs on the clock for that price!

  • Christie - 2011-10-25 14:48

    Wrong! They have no downsized due to the economic crunch. They did so to bring down their fleet emissions average. Check your research!

      darryn.padayachee - 2011-10-25 15:08

      whoever the journo is that wrote this article obviously knows very little about cars!

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