Scion xB and xD to Be Discontinued

Scion xB

Toyota plans to discontinue its iconic Scion xB and the ill-remembered xD, according to Ward's Auto.

Scion Vice President Jack Hollis told Ward's that the brand didn't "have plans for a direct xB or xD replacement."

Scion, which debuted in 2003, was aimed at drawing younger car shoppers to Toyota. To keep things fresh, part of Scion's mission statement was supposed to be a "one and done" marketing approach, Hollis said. That meant Scion models were supposed to stick around for only one generation and be replaced by new nameplates. The Scion xB and tC proved too popular to abandon; both models are now in their second generation.

By Colin Bird | April 23, 2012 | Comments (35)

Best Cars for Black Friday Shopping


A successful Black Friday shopping trip is all in the planning. Bargain hunters study store ads and websites as though they're cramming for a test, and now they have less time to do so as several major chains — Target, Best Buy, Macy's and Kohl's — will open their doors at midnight instead of 4 or 5 a.m. the Friday after Thanksgiving.

There's one thing that Black Friday shoppers can plan for before the deal-laden store circulars arrive: which car to take.

Black Friday shoppers might think bigger is better — big SUVs, minivans — when it comes to picking a car for hauling all their bargains. They're not wrong, especially if they're hoping to bag a gigantic flat-screen TV at a low price. But nimble small cars in busy parking lots shouldn't be left out of the Black Friday fun. Here are our top picks for Black Friday haulers:

By Jennifer Newman | November 22, 2011 | Comments (3)

2012 Scion xB, tC: Ch-Ch-Changes

2012 Scion tCMild is the word for the 2012 Scion xB and Scion tC in terms of updates. Both get a new stereo and Bluetooth connectivity standard, while prices are held in check for the model year. 

The new Pioneer head unit can handle HD radio, Bluetooth phone connectivity and Bluetooth audio streaming. The system also features iPod/USB connectivity, auxiliary port and a subwoofer RCA output. The xB’s six-speaker stereo produces up to 160 watts. On the tC, the eight-speaker system makes 300 watts.

Both trims also have a new optional premium stereo with a 5.8-inch touch-screen, iTunes tagging and Pandora radio output via an iPhone. Sound quality is also improved with the uprated radios.

By Colin Bird | August 8, 2011 | Comments (2)

A Look At Scion's New Lineup

There are few car brands that can turnover their lineup with new models at just one auto show. But that’s what Scion did at the New York International Auto Show earlier this month, exactly eight years after it debuted its first concepts under Big Apple spotlights. For the 2011 model year, the Toyota spin-off brand debuted an all-new mini-car called the iQ, a fully redesigned version of its best-seller the tC coupe and a slightly refreshed version of the boxy xB. Its fourth model, the xD remained untouched, but three out of four is still an impressive feat.  

2011 Scion iQ

Jack Hollis, vice president of Scion, joked at his New York auto-show press conference that the Scion iQ is a "Minier and Smarter vehicle," which makes it pretty clear what the iQ will compete with. It's about as wide as the Mini Cooper, but taller — roughly as tall as a Smart ForTwo. From bumper to bumper, it's between the two at 120.1 inches. The ForTwo is 106.1 inches and the Cooper 145.6. In person, if you look at it from certain angles, the iQ looks sizable. Must be the height and width.

By Joe Wiesenfelder | April 19, 2010 | Comments (0)

2011 Scion xB Gets Restyled, Priced

  • Competes with: Nissan Cube, Kia Soul
  • Looks like: The xB gets its chin back
  • Drivetrain: 158-hp, 2.5-liter four-cylinder with five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission
  • Hits dealerships: Late March
Many Scion xB fans didn’t like the redesign of the boxy compact nearly three years ago. Maybe that’s why Scion decided to revise a bit of that new design for the 2011 model year.

The most notable change is the jutting front bumper, which is similar to the original model’s chinlike protrusion. The headlights, taillights and front and rear bumpers also get restyled. Besides that chin, most of the changes are subtle.

Inside, the seats get a new lighter gray fabric, and the front seats get beefed-up bolsters. A new center console has an adjustable armrest, and the steering wheel adds a telescoping feature to its previous tilt.  

The Hypnotic Teal Micra color that was so polarizing for the past generation will no longer be offered. Instead, two new colors will be available: Army Rock Metallic and Elusive Blue Metallic.

Powertrain offerings remain the same, with the 158-horsepower engine being a bit of a gas hog for the class at 22/28 mpg city/highway for either transmission. The 2010 Kia Soul’s sportiest engine gets 24/30 with 142 hp and starts $800 less than the xB.

What is the price of the 2011 xB? It gets a $150 bump to $16,000 for the manual transmission and $16,950 for the automatic, not including $670 in destination charges.

More photos are below, but unfortunately none of the shots Scion provided features the new exterior colors.

By David Thomas | March 17, 2010 | Comments (52)

Toyota Corolla, Scion xB Earn IIHS Top Safety Pick Status

Perhaps the most sought-after safety accolade in the automotive industry is scoring a Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The agency recently added a roof-strength test for cars to be eligible for the award, making it an even tougher accomplishment. When the institute added the new guidelines late last year, no Toyotas made its initial list of Top Safety Picks.

Today, the IIHS announced that the 2010 Toyota Corolla and 2010 Scion xB both earned the top score of Good in the roof-strength test and are again Top Safety Picks. The 2009 models of both cars were past winners under the old guidelines. Of the four other Toyota models tested for roof strength, only the Camry earned a top rating of Good. The RAV4 and Yaris earned a rating of Acceptable, and the Tacoma earned a Marginal rating. No other Lexus or Scion models have been tested for roof strength yet.

The 2010 Corolla is included in both recalls for floormats and sticky accelerator pedals and is being investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over complaints of it its steering. The Scion xB is not included in the two recalls.

The IIHS adds that "Recalls happen all the time, and they happen to Top Safety Pick vehicles as well. They just don’t usually attract the level of media attention as the Toyota problems have. The award for the Corolla only applies to vehicles fixed under any recalls — such as those related to the unintended acceleration issue."

By David Thomas | March 1, 2010 | Comments (0) Compares Box-Cars


The Scion xB has recently seen the introduction of competition in a segment that didn’t even exist a few years ago. The 2010 Kia Soul and the 2009 Nissan Cube get stacked against the 2009 Scion, and reviewers Bill Jackson, Kelsey Mays and Joe Wiesenfelder have the task of sorting out the winner. From blind spots to seating comfort, the guys go down the list to find the best econobox on the market.

Cars.comparison: The Box-Cars (

By Stephen Markley | September 30, 2009 | Comments (6)

Econobox Comparison Video

Although Scion was first on the scene with the xB, Kia and Nissan have introduced their own low-priced small, boxy cars, the Soul and the Cube, respectively. reviewer Kelsey Mays has spent time in all three and rendered his verdict on each. If you’re in the market for an economy car, though, he suggests you might want to look elsewhere.

By Stephen Markley | August 27, 2009 | Comments (3)

2008 Scion xB Video

When it debuted, the Scion xB was one of the only small, boxy cars on the road. Now that competition like the Kia Soul and Nissan Cube has arrived, how does the xB hold up? reviewer Bill Jackson takes you through the 2008 Scion xB. Although he likes it as a fun, practical car, he points out the areas where the xB gets it wrong.

By Stephen Markley | August 26, 2009 | Comments (16)

Ch-Ch-Changes: 2010 Scion xB

Blackberry09 We’re just going to say this right away: Nothing has changed for the 2010 model year. OK, not nothing; we wouldn’t give it the Ch-Ch-Changes treatment if there weren’t some changes, but they’re slight.

For one, there’s a new base stereo head unit that offers a better MP3 player interface, Scion says. Like the 2009, the 2010 xB comes standard with USB and auxiliary audio inputs. There’s also a new exterior paint color, Sizzling Crimson Mica, which replaces Blackberry Crush Metallic (shown here). We actually liked that Blackberry color, too. Darn.

One other thing that hasn’t changed is the starting price. Manual-transmission xBs start at $15,750, and the automatic starts at $16,700. All xBs come rather well-equipped with standard power windows, seat-mounted and side curtain airbags, cruise control, and stereo controls on the steering wheel. Considering we recently tested a similarly equipped $17,000 Toyota Yaris with an automatic transmission, these prices aren’t so bad. And the Yaris didn’t even have a USB plug.The 2010s will go on sale at the end of April.

For a picture of the snazzy new stereo, click below.

By David Thomas | April 16, 2009 | Comments (2)

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