Feeds

Legendary McLaren F1 designer talks up e-car plan

And gets £4.5m of Govt money to build it

A new approach to endpoint data protection

Leccy Tech Mention the phrases 'Gordon Murray' and 'electric car' in the same sentence and images of gold-plated battery powered hypercars probably spring to mind.

But you couldn't be more wrong, because Murray - designer of the McLaren F1 - has come over all environmentally conscientious as his latest brainchild, the T.27 electric city car, proves.

At the moment, the T.27 is nothing more than an idea, but with the help of £4.5m ($7.4m/€5m) investment from the British Government's Technology Strategy Board that was announced yesterday it could see the light of day in 16 months.

Gordon Murray Design

The seating layout will be something like this
Click for full-size image

Like the petrol-engined T.25 concept that Murray partially revealed at the end of 2008, the T.27 will be a three-seater, with one bucket in the front and two behind. So at least one part of the legendary McLaren F1 design lives on in its designer's latest brainchild.

The electric drive train is being developed by British company Zytek Automotive which, along with Murray, is matching the Government's investment.

Assuming all goes to plan, by early 2011 Gordon Murray Design will have four production-ready prototypes of the T.27 running. Then they'll seek further funding and partners to put the car into production, hopefully here in Blighty.

As important as the actual design of the T.27 is Murray's “iStream” manufacturing method, which eschews steel monocoque and traditional assembly approaches for a lightweight tubular affair with welded panels that arrive pre-painted at the assembly line.

Apparently this “holistic approach” to car design - GMD's words not ours - results in a car slightly smaller than a Smart, but with much more interior space and far more flexible storage options.

Gordon Murray Design

One day GDM's e-cars could be hogging Britain's inside lanes - two at a time

Murray's contention is that iStream will cut the start-up costs for an assembly line by around 80 per cent and lead to the creation of a whole new type of low-energy consumption car maker as well as low-energy consumption cars.

Details of the T.27 are, perhaps not surprisingly, a bit sketchy at the moment but apparently it will have a top speed of 60mph and be able to travel around 100 miles between charges. Murray also said it will meet all relevant European safety standards.

With the T.27 being no more than a twinkle in Gordon's eye, the announcement of the new project was celebrated by the Innovation Minister, Lord Drayson, taking a T.25 mule for a spin. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Brit amateur payload set to complete full circle around PLANET EARTH
Ultralight solar radio tracker in glorious 25,000km almost-space odyssey
Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low
Cheshire cat effect see neutrons and their properties walk different paths
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?