iQ microcar | Small Car Big Concept

toyota iq 01 iQ microcar | Small Car Big Concept

What would it take for you to give up the spacious luxury of your Suburban, Expedition or Escalade? Nothing? Even if the word “compact” fills you with horror, bear with me a second. Let’s just say you were ready to take the plunge into downsizing for clean air’s sake. You might want to check out the iQ microcar.

Created in Toyota’s advanced European design studio, the iQ was first previewed at the Frankfurt Motor Show last September. Designed with their Vibrant Clarity philosophy in mind, Toyota managed to create a petite but viable alternative to the CO2-emitting vehicles we’ve been told are as good as it gets.

0 iQ microcar | Small Car Big Concept Continue Reading / See Additional Photos

Smart Fortwo | But Not Forthree Or Forfour

smartfortwo 03 Smart Fortwo | But Not Forthree Or Forfour

Just this morning, I encountered my first smart fortwo. It was parked behind my Toyota Yaris in front of the Los Angeles coffee shop I frequent. My first thought was a wish that I’d gotten one of these economical and forward thinking cars instead of a Toyota Yaris, which I purchased last summer after totaling my Prius and realizing I needed to downgrade price-wise. The smart fortwo starts at $11,590, which is half of the Prius’ lot price. I could save money and be driving around looking eco-chic again.

But alas, this is a fortwo. And seeing as how I have two kids, my car needs to be at least a forthree.

smart car coupe 04 Smart Fortwo | But Not Forthree Or Forfour Continue Reading / See Additional Photos

The $2500 Car The World Could Do Without

tata nano 01 The $2500 Car The World Could Do Without

One of the most tragic outcomes of globalization is that currently-developing countries like India are adopting America’s love of the gas powered automobile and the independence associated with it. These countries are finding ways to replace current mass and people-powered transit with individual, motorized movement, just like the U.S. did in the early 20th Century. Have they learned nothing from our mistakes?

Enter the Tata Nano, India’s folks-wagon. Tato engineers dispensed with everything that makes a car a car in the U.S. — like a radio, air-conditioning, safety and at least four cylinders — in its pursuit of lowering costs as far as possible. But don’t look for this little car in the U.S. anytime soon. The Nano will not meet most pollution standards and it simply cannot pass safety tests.

tata nano 02 The $2500 Car The World Could Do Without

tata nano 03 The $2500 Car The World Could Do Without

The Nano runs on a 2-cylinder, .06-liter engine that tops out at 60 mph and gets 50 mpg. The fuel efficiency might get you excited, but consider this: India’s population stands at just over 1.1 billion souls and counting. If even half of those people start driving, it would amount to nearly twice as many cars as there are in the U.S. – hello, environmental catastrophe. This will ensure that by 2020, there will be over a billion oil dependent, air polluting cars on the planet.

tata nano 04 The $2500 Car The World Could Do Without

Not to mention that roads in India are nearly in constant gridlock as it is.

For these reasons and more we must all ask the same question Tato’s engineers asked while designing the Nano: Do we really need that?

Not if it’s going to bring about the end of the world, we don’t.

G Living1
Find us on Google+