Toyota will bring out iQ Car Early

By Brendan Moore


Toyota has announced at the Tokyo Auto Show that the iQ, a projected Mini competitor, has been pushed up in the production queue and will be in showrooms as early as Fall 2008. The diminutive car will be the smallest 4-seat car sold in the world when it goes on sale, at approximately 10 feet long and 5.5 feet across. For comparison, that is 25.6 inches shorter than a Mini, 22 inches shorter than the new Fiat 500, but 11 inches longer than the Smart car which goes on sale here in the United States in the first quarter of 2008.

Toyota stated that the car will be shown at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2008 and go on sale by the end of the year. Toyota expects to sell around 80,000 units in Europe in 2009. The car is not slated for sale in North America.

Rumors are rampant at the Tokyo Show that the iQ will be powered by a Yamaha motorbike engine, but senior Toyota sources brush those rumors off as not credible. One Toyota executive did point out, however, that Toyota does own part of Yamaha, and that the bike engine specialists often get involved with Toyota’s engine development.

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Author: Brendan Moore

Brendan Moore is a Principal Consultant with Cedar Point Consulting , a management consulting practice based in the Washington, DC area. He also manages Autosavant Consulting, a separate practice within Cedar Point Consulting. where he advises businesses connected to the auto industry. Cedar Point Consulting can be found at

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  1. I see this car as more of Smart competitor than a Mini competitor. As I’ve said previously, the name is even a ripoff of “Smart” in some ways.

    Motorbike engine, huh? That sounds pretty neat. Were early Honda Civics powered by air cooled motorcycle engines? My dad told me that, but as with many things, you never know if he was just saying that to shut me up. 🙂

  2. I think the early Civics had water-cooled Honda motorcyle engines but only for a very short time. A honda fan could probably answer this question.

  3. As a smart car owner I gotta say that this car can’t compete with the smart. If all other things were equal (mpg, price, environmental impact) it would still lose. smart has a great looking car with personality this IQ is a drab futuristic looking blend in. Ick.

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