Murray's new car will be a low-volume fixed-head two-seater about the same size as the Smart Roadster
Steve Cropley Autocar
3 November 2017

Plans for an all-new ultra-compact high-performance coupé that uses McLaren F1 design principles, reinstates Gordon Murray’s original IGM car brand and showcases a “superlight” version of his iStream manufacturing process have been unveiled by the designer at an exhibition to mark his first 50 years of creating cars.

Gordon Murray is thinking big and building small 

The low-volume fixed-head two-seater is believed to be about the same size as the Smart Roadster that Murray has always seen as near-ideal in size and packaging — but it will be built by Murray’s own team as a flagship for a new manufacturing business known as Gordon Murray Automotive. It will utilise latest materials and processes and be built with Murray’s typically fanatical attention to detail. No price or launch date has been announced, although Murray is understood to have at least one driving prototype.   

The IGM brand — whose initials stand for Ian Gordon Murray, the designer’s full name — was coined for Murray’s first car, a roadster he built and raced in South Africa in his teens. The new coupé and all future GMA cars will have a redesigned version of the logo Murray first drew for that car.  

The new coupé is understood to be a transverse mid-engined design with a spacious cabin and generous front boot, despite its compact exterior. Murray says the new Superlight iteration of iStream replaces some tubular steel components with lighter, high-strength aluminium sections. The coupé’s body-in-white is claimed to be around 50% lighter than a conventional stamped steel structure. 

The new IGM coupé could use a small-capacity, three-cylinder turbo engine of about 150bhp, driving the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox, with all-disc brakes and new-design, fully independent suspension. Its likely 140mph performance flows from a combination of low weight and advanced aerodynamics, including a fully functioning rear diffuser. A teaser picture also shows a roof-mounted air scoop, reminiscent of previous Murray-designed sports and racing cars that collected air that way to feed the turbo and cool the engine bay.

Back in 2015, Murray built a concept along very similar lines for Yamaha to take to the Tokyo motor show that year, but the motorcycle company — believed then to be contemplating car manufacture in Europe — showed the car with a body of its own design and has since revealed little about the project. Murray is now believed to be keener on bringing his own designs to life in small batches, using both the IGM badge and those of selected clients.

Murray’s 50-year exhibition, labelled 'One Formula' like the book that will follow, is an invitation-only event featuring around 40 of the 50 Murray designs built so far. Highlights include the famous Brabham BT46B 'fan car' and the 1988 McLaren MP4/4 in which Ayrton Senna scored his first Formula 1 victory. A sidelight to the official line-up is 'Gordon’s garage', a selection of the designer’s own cars and motorcycles, including a Honda S800 and an Abarth 750 Zagato.

The event’s other purpose is to introduce visitors to the new headquarters for GMA. The original business, Gordon Murray Design, will stay in Shalford, Surrey, for the time being.

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Comments
12

3 November 2017

WHEN WHILL THIS CAR BE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE. You keep on churning Gordon Murray articles about all of the cars he's going to release without actual facts behind them, nevermind actual cars. 

Judging by your words alone the man should have a full line up of cars already on sale for years now.

 

 

3 November 2017

Otherwise not.

3 November 2017

As Byzantine says, it has to be priced right, otherwise it's yet ANOTHER niche car.  At least he seems to have dropped his stupid idea of tiny city cars that look absurd.  I see Yahama seems to have dropped it, too.  His manufacturing method should produce low-cost building, then...and thus low cost cars?  If it doesn't, then what's it for?  I like the look of the car, but I'll reserve judgement until I see the price.

3 November 2017

Autocar, some other publications, have given free PR to Murray over every little thing that he has done for at least a decade.  From iStream to this all we have is talk.  No action and supposedly one showcar from Yamaha though the body is different than what he proposed and they used their own internals so it wasn't really "his" car in the end anyway.  When Murray actually shows a physical car that the muttering rotters can test with an on-sale date and price then maybe the rest of the world can actually pay attention.  Until then he must be viewed as a singer who keeps trying to put out music long after their best hits were released.

10 November 2017
Moparman wrote:

Autocar, some other publications, have given free PR to Murray over every little thing that he has done for at least a decade.  From iStream to this all we have is talk.  No action and supposedly one showcar from Yamaha though the body is different than what he proposed and they used their own internals so it wasn't really "his" car in the end anyway.  When Murray actually shows a physical car that the muttering rotters can test with an on-sale date and price then maybe the rest of the world can actually pay attention.  Until then he must be viewed as a singer who keeps trying to put out music long after their best hits were released.

I agree entirely.  Murray has shown himself in the past to be a great designer, but it's the far distant past and this may as well be a piece about a new Englebert album, except that I'd expect a new Englebert album to be out on time and pretty decent.  In truth, the piece is just typical Cropley bullshit, the man's credibility is non-existent and a world away from the likes of Frankel and Prior.

I don't need to put my name here, it's on the left

 

3 November 2017

I love that the car will be compact, even down to the 3cylinder engine but surely the new 200bhp 1.5 litre Ford from the new Fiesta ST would be the obvious choice

www.twitter.com/racingpuma

3 November 2017

I doubt it'll be cheap.  There's so much to pay for beyond the mere assembly process and GMA has no economy of scale.  The Alfa 4C and the Alpine are both £50K+ and the former isn't much good.  For it to be cheap, Ford would have to build it with lots of Fiesta bits and pieces; I wish they would, instead of the £420,000 GT.  A friend of mine was invited to the bash, so I'll ask him if he picked up any info.

3 November 2017

Then correct me if I'm wrong (and I may be) - isn't the idea of his istream to drastically reduce costs?  As you say, there's more than just assembly, admittedly, but I thought istream meant less parts, as well.  It's a frame, isn't it, that panels bolt to?

3 November 2017
I think cheap probably means £40k for a small lightweight car, rather than £50k. The I-stream process may be cheaper than other methods for small scale production, but design and development costs and parts costs purchased in low volume and marketing, homologation costs etc will mean that this type of car will never be really cheap.
The problem is that customers expect a small light car to be cheap, whereas in reality production costs are the same as other cars, and therein lies the problem.
But as a concept, this car sounds terrific!

4 November 2017

Gordon Murray designed the McLaren in which Senna won his first championship ... Senna's first win came in a Lotus in 1985.

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