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T.27 Electric City Car Receives £4.5m Funding From UK Government

Gordon Murray outside of Gordan Murrary Designs officesThe T.27 electric car, invention of McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray, is to receive £4.5m funding from the UK government’s Technology Strategy Board in order to reduce carbon emissions within the car industry.  The all electric T.27 MPV style vehicle will be an affordable city car built using sustainable production techniques in collaboration between Gordon Murray Design and Zytek Automotive Technology.

The consortium aims to develop four prototypes of the vehicle by February 2011, ideally leading to scaling up and building a manufacturing facility with the ultimate goal of making this affordable, fun and environmentally-friendly car widely available on the open market.

The T.27 EV will be designed to be manufactured in a way that minimises the use of materials and keeps the vehicle’s carbon as low as possible, known as the iStream process.  Gordon Murray, inventor of iStream, has been refining the technology since 1999 and recruited former colleagues from his time at F1. Production is supposedly very efficient and flexible which means that the manufacturing plant can be designed to be 20% of the size of a conventional factory, leading to a possible 80% reduction in capital investment.


T.25 Concept Car - Image from Car MagazineThe T.25 by Gordon Murray Design is a petrol powered 3-seater and used a similar approach to that planned for the T.27.  The T.25 received considerable market interest and provides confidence that the T.27’s goals are 100% achievable. T.27 will also set new standards in environmental sustainability. High level life cycle analysis taken from T.25 data predicts life-cycle emissions 63% less than the average car and for the T.27 life-cycle, emissions 27% less than the nearest EV rival.  These levels are partly due to the iStream® manufacturing approach, as rival compact city car EVs do not simultaneously address all of the factors that the T.27 does and the combination of attributes addresses a substantial market opportunity.

 T.25 concept designs by Gordon Murray Design - a petrol powered 3-seater Sketches of the T.25 prototype by Gordon MurraySketches of the T.25 interior by Gordon Murray

More photos available from Car Magazine

A spokesperson for Murray commented on the vehicle and said: “The T.27 will be the world’s most efficient car because it uses an entirely fresh approach to design and accepts no compromise in safety, performance, range, space, weight, rolling resistance and ride quality whilst adopting the iStream methodology for manufacture”.

Gordon Murray Design Limited is based in Surrey, UK and aims to be the world leader in automotive design and offers complete in-house capability for design, prototyping and development.

Zytek, also based in the UK, has designed and integrated electric drive systems for a wide range of European and US vehicle manufacturers and is currently building high performance electric drivetrains up to 70kW and 300Nm for cars, buses and light commercial vehicles.

The Technology Strategy Board is a business-led executive non-departmental public body established by the British government.  Its purpose is to promote and support research into, and development and exploitation of, technology and innovation for the benefit of UK businesses.

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