Yamaha Gordon Murray iStream

I love small(sometimes), lightweight cars that use interesting materials and methods in their production.  Some of my favourites include anything by Lotus or TVR (simple, fibreglass, space frames and aluminium), Matra/Renault (the hot dip galvanised / composite panelled Espace) and SMART (the factory was a work of art in itself and the little turbo triple in the boot a joy). So I’ve had my eye on Gordon Murray’s iStream project since he first floated the idea a few years ago. The all encompassing concept, from finished product to the actual manufacturing system really tickled my nerd, I was desperate to see it become real.

So I’m pleased to see Yamaha are seriously looking at entering the car market with a version of Murray’s visionary vehicle. They’re not know for their cars but Yamaha already have a strong engineering brand and the resources to make a serious attempt at entering the automotive market. I’m looking forward to seeing the waves a Gordon and Yamaha combo can make in the car market.

I think Yamaha and Gordon have a real chance of creating the 21st century 人々の車 (Hitobito no kuruma). A vehicle that could disrupt the cumbersome, giant production line, stamped metal, high cost tooling manufacturing system introduction by Henry back in the 20th century, and modernises transport design and manufacture.

Imagine locally sourced cars created using simple, lightweight, agile production. Your Hitobito no kuruma could be made at a smallish factory in the region you live, by people you know! No need for them to be shipped/flow/driven halfway across the world to customers. And it could wear a ‘Designed in Surrey’ badge.

Or nothing may come of it….

A.

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