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Toyota’s new president admits the automaker needs an excitement-infusion, and to that end – and in order to match the upcoming Honda CR-Z tit-for-tat – Toyota is rumored to be working on a two-door version of the Prius. (more…)

000_scioniqycAs expected, Toyota’s youthful Scion division will indeed get a version of the diminutive iQ for the North American market, possibly by either the end of 2010 as an ‘11 model or in early 2011 as a ‘12 model. According to Motor Trend, the car will cost about the same as the Yaris and get the usual modifications for the American market, such as slightly extended bumpers and recalibrated airbags. (more…)


At next week’s Detroit Auto Show, Scion will offer a tweaked version of its wares in the “Release Series” models, one of them being the Scion xB Release 6.0.


Toyota iQ, the super compact, is coming to the United States, with a twist. According to some sources, the iQ will debut at the Los Angeles International Auto Show in November as the latest addition to the Scion lineup.

Even though the tiny three-plus-one seat iQ (three adults, one child) was designed for Europe and Japan, there is a strong business case for bringing it here as a Scion.

Toyota, busy with the launch of the next-generation Prius, doesn’t need another small gas sipper to steal its marketing thunder — particularly one that could poach sales from the Yaris, the brand’s other high miler.

In addition, Scion desperately needs some buzz to improve its brand image. Though sales of the second generation xB and new xD models have been aided by rising fuel prices, Scion’s overall image has been hurt by the more conservative second-generation models, and the tC coupe is about due for a redo. Critics and consumers alike have noticed the absence of the original fun and funky themes that launched the brand. A squat and striking iQ would definitely draw some attention back to Scion.

Not only is the iQ a perfect demographic fit for the young and hip urban dweller Scion has targeted since day one, it slots nicely into its lineup as the entry level offering. Positioned under $15,000, a two door, hatchback iQ wouldn’t challenge the more traditional four-door, five-seat Scion xD hatch, but would likely give the Smart fortwo fits. For around the same price as the Smart, the iQ would offer additional passenger/cargo capacity.

The iQ moniker is spot on as well — a play off the Smart that fits Scion’s traditional two letter, lower/upper case naming convention. As for what would power a Scion iQ, it’s doubtful we’d see either the 1.0L three-cylinder gas engine or the 1.4L turbodiesel available in other markets. Our bet for the U.S.-spec iQ is the 1.5-liter engine found in the Yaris, combined with a five speed manual or optional Multidrive CVT.

Source : motortrend

Scion announced pricing for the 2009 xB and tC today, and if you want to get your hands on the love-it-or-hate-it toaster on wheels, you’ll have to pony up an extra $100 this year. The xB’s base price is now $16,370 (including shipping), and comes equipped with a five-speed manual as standard equipment. If you can’t stand swapping your own cogs, you can shell out another $950 for a four-speed automatic. The tC’s price remains the same as the 2008 model, starting at $17,620 with a five-speed manual and $18,420 for the four-speed auto ‘box. Sales of the xB begin this month and the “slightly tweaked” tC will arrive in May.


Filed under: Concept Cars, Coupes, Hatchbacks, Scion


With slumping sales at Scion, the automaker is looking to expand its offering of specialized niche-oriented vehicles. Criticism has swept its most recent concept: the Hako Coupe.

Scion sales have hit a slump in the last 17 months, with a peak of 175,000 units sold in 2006, the youth-marketed brand’s sales have dipped to 130,000 vehicles last year. The solution will likely come from three new vehicles to be released in the next few years. Scion’s veep, Jack Hollis, told Automotive News in an interview during the Big Apple bash, that Scion is “studying two or three models in conceptual form right now.” Unfortunately, one of those was the Hako Coupe concept that was unveiled in New York and was met with considerable backlash from attendees and those of you following the show from home (check the comments Scion).


Click above for high-res gallery of the Scion Hako Concept

Scion’s new Hako unveiling disappointed reviewers upon its unveiling. Its vintage-inspired design comes off as boxy and off-target for the younger market.

As reported by Damon Lavrinc:

Any hope that Scion would be revealing the next iteration of the tC, or a clean-sheet sports coupe with which to replace it, were dashed this afternoon in New York when the wraps were pulled off the Hako Coupe Concept. The Hako is essentially a Scion xB that’s lost a couple of doors and gained a massive schnoz, a seriously upright windshield and some highly stylized accents. Scion’s PR people insist that the coupe’s design is inspired by the “emergence of American vintage style among young Tokyo trendsetters,” which may be true, but Scion’s veep, Jack Hollis’ remark that the Hako “is the sporty version of a box.” Oxymoronic? We think so.