My impression of the G1X is that it is a toe-in-the-water exercise for fitting a large sensor in a small body, as well as being a logical continuation of an existing, successful line of camera (the G series). I think that cutting down the sensor size slightly from APS-C is a smart move if it puts them in a position to produce a similar line-up of compact yet still excellent lenses as are available for Micro 4/3 (the G1X sensor is just slightly bigger them m4/3).
While the G1X is a great and unique camera in it's own right, the autofocus speed is a letdown (however accuracy is very good). As a camera company, Canon really need to sort their s@&% out to avoid becoming a technological dinosaur. In terms of still imaging they have slipped behind their competitors in the advanced to professional categories in a number of areas. Releasing a mirrorless camera system with an AF system that can't even match a 2008 model Panasonic G1 would be disappointing. The mirrorless camera market is currently the playground of the electronics companies (Olympus being the only traditional camera company seriously involved), and the technological war is fierce. For Canon, 2012 should be 1987 all over again. Forget the past and come up with something truly new and innovative.