Monday, June 13, 2011

Aston Martin To Sell $20,000 Toyota for $50,000

Memo to Buyers:  If You’re So Rich, Why Aren’t You Smart?

Business Week reports that the Aston Martin Company, yes the one that makes those great, high powered very expensive sports cars is going to sell a “mini car” for the base price of about $50,000. 

What do you get for $50,000 with the Aston Martin name on it?  You get a $20,000 Toyota iQ, with the name changed to Cygnet and leather interior.  That’s right, leather interior.

"This car is a luxury city car," says chief designer Marek Reichman. "Prior to Cygnet, your choice was, you open the door and it smells of plastic; now you open the door, and you'll be hit by this wonderful smell of leather."

[Disclosure Alert:  The Dismal Political Economist doesn’t clean his car very often.  When he opens the door his is hit by the smell of something that is neither plastic nor leather.]

Well surely you get Aston Martin’s famous high powered engine.

Beneath the hood, however, the Cygnet's 97-horsepower engine is essentially unchanged from the one in the $20,500 Toyota iQ. The Cygnet accelerates to 100 kilometers (62 miles) per hour in about 11.6 seconds, the slowest of any Aston Martin

Zero to 62 mph in 11.2 Seconds?? A Toro Self Propelled Lawnmower does that.

What does the industry think?

"I have no idea who would buy an Aston iQ or why they would even want one—it looks just daft," says Simon Empson, managing director of U.K. discount car website

Well, when The Dismal Political Economist finds out Mr. Empson, he will let everyone know.  In the meantime, if you need the smell of leather in your life, buy a cow.

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