7 Oct 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on SCION xB – APPLE IN EYE OF GEN Y STRANGELY APPEALING SCION XB – SFGate



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I others have a more refined sense of aesthetics, but I can’t get behind the debate the old vs. new Scion xB, the funky five-seat wagon sold by Toyota’s Gen brand. Aren’t they ugly?

Really. If you’re say, warthog for dinner juicy, succulent, fall-off-the-tusk – do you fret the relative of warthog A compared to warthog xB? So it matters if the redesigned car is more or visually appealing than the (model years 2004 to

They both make cry.

Scion debuted in as Toyota’s bid for the hoodies-and-Vans set. the beginning it was clear Scion’s mandarins had taken a big screwdriver to the heads of Gen Y, a demographic so savagely from the moment of birth as to it intensely allergic to anything conventional advertising. Scion as successfully as any car company since I’d say – generated its own culture, with Scion ring tones, car shows, sponsored exhibitions, Second environments and other insidious of affinity marketing.

To help deepen a sense of Scion sells its cars which is to say, with no factory options. Buyers can their rides with accessories (I’m partial to foot wells and cup holders, sound systems and performance such as lowering springs, bars and cold-air intakes. Not enough?

There are vast of Scion-specific aftermarket chintziness

To avoid freaking out inexperienced car Scion dealerships practice pricing, which is basically pricing, except it’s Don’t, like, haggle me,

The original Scion lineup the xA subcompact, xB space van (a retread of a Toyota bB) and the tC sport coupe, all of well equipped and aggressively The underperforming xA has since been to be replaced this summer by the xD, a new subcompact hatch. The beautifully tC quickly established itself as the bogie in the subcompact coupe

The surprise was the xB, for which Totoya/Scion had low expectations – and why not? It like Frankenstein’s head on wheels. But the xB caught on, and not just tatted-up kids but with elders. Why? The practical surely.

The car was cheap, economical by a thrift-intensive 1.5-liter, 108-horsepower four), and tremendously useful, loads of cargo space that great rectilinear of a cabin.

Meanwhile, the sheer of the shape – the bumper out like Alfred Hitchcock’s lip – seemed playful, a bit of anti-snobbery that foiled the expectation. As for buyers in their I don’t doubt that vibed to the Pacific Rim hip of the xB, which out of the Japanese industrial aesthetic of cuteness (also on display in the Element and the coming-soon Nissan This is design that the funk in function.

The second-generation xB is, by the finely calibrated of postmodern design, less and ironic, less a thumb in the eye a finger in the wind of the marketplace. The new xB is and more aero-sophisticated. The front has been integrated into the clip. Most prominent, the glass is narrower, squeezed to a tinted, gun-slot aperture the higher beltline and the lower

This makes the xB look even though the overall is the same.

That’s the only that remains the same. The is up a full foot in length inches) and 2.8 inches in width, a wheelbase stretched 4.0 inches. The that has provoked the most in version 1.0 partisans is weight: The new xB a whopping 600 pounds more.

To compensate for the additional mass, has borrowed the family’s 2.4-liter, inline four, the same as in the tC, and paired it with a five-speed or four-speed automatic. Tuners, note: This engine has turned in the engine bay so that all the you might want to modify the induction system) is squeezed the firewall.

So then, what’s to

Just about everything, with the fact that xB a hundred times more than before. The booming is gone, as are the unpleasant droning that seeped into the at speed. The first xB drove a bad case of tinnitus.

The 600 pounds are not ballast. This car comes equipped for its class, including and rear disc brakes; traction control and stability 16-inch tires; front and air bags; keyless entry; doors and windows. Our test priced at $18,339, left me nothing in equipment.

The new xB has 28 additional cubic feet of space (with the rear folded) and what feels miles more shoulder and hip in the front. The centrally located panel, with its bank of rotary displays, syncs up with the round air outlets.

I the decline in fuel economy 15 percent, I figure), though the new xB 22 miles per gallon in the city, 28 on the – isn’t awful. merging-lane acceleration is better, and liveliness and maneuverability is improved the engine’s 162 pound-feet of torque, up 57 from the previous engine.

to strut fronts and torsion-beam suspension, the car’s handling is deliberate than before a consequence of the increased curb – but it’s still a hoot to drive.

To be sure, the new xB is not as much a cult as before. It’s bigger, unquestionably more mainstream, a kind of American hot-rod (the chop-top roof) the Asian preciousness.

And yet, heart, xB devotees: It’s ugly. And that’s a beautiful 2008 SCION xB

Base $17,275

Price, as tested:

Power train: 2.4-liter, DOHC inline four-cylinder variable-valve timing; four-speed with manual shift front-wheel drive

Horsepower: 158 at rpm

Curb weight: 3,100

Zero-60 mph: 9 seconds

102.4 inches

Overall 167.3 inches

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