2015 Scion iQ vs. Its Competition

2015 Scion iQ
John Voelcker John Voelcker Senior Editor

The most ready comparison for the 2015 Scion iQ is Smart's ForTwo.

Both are small and packaged for crowded cities, although the Scion offers 3+1 seating to help make a case for its ability to occasionally carry more than two occupants.

In reality, cars like the Scion and the Fiat 500 and MINI Cooper are effectively two-seaters.

The Scion is a more minimalist machine, a concept that never really caught on here.

It's more modern, more pleasant to drive, and handles better than the ancient Smart ForTwo.

(A new ForTwo is on its way and should be here within a year or so.) Both minicars are rated at 36 or 37 mpg, but the Toyota Prius C--a subcompact five-door hatchback with far more space inside--is rated at 50 mpg, and starts at only $3,500 more than the Scion.

The MINI Cooper and Fiat 500 start at the same level as the Prius C, but bring their stylish charm and a "real car" driving feel.

Finally, there are economy cars--we picked the Toyota Yaris, from the Scion's parent company--that start around the same price as the iQ but offer four normal seats and far more cargo space, with gas mileage only a bit worse and far more pep and performance margin on the highway.

2015 Scion iQ2015 Scion iQBrowse Used Listings2015 Toyota Yaris  -  First Drive, September 20142015 Toyota YarisBrowse Used Listings2015 Toyota Prius C2015 Toyota Prius CBrowse Used Listings2015 MINI Cooper S 4-Door Hardtop, Catskill Mountains, NY, Apr 20152015 MINI CooperBrowse Used Listings2015 Smart fortwo 2-door Cabriolet Passion Angular Front Exterior View2015 Smart fortwoBrowse Used Listings2015 Fiat 500 1957 Edition Cabrio2015 FIAT 500Browse Used Listings
Quick Specs
6.6
The 2015 Scion iQ is made for city dwellers who have trouble finding parking; others will see it as a fashion accessory or a vehicular oddity.
6.8
The 2015 Toyota Yaris gets an eye-catching new face, spruced-up interior trims, and a somewhat quieter interior, but it lags behind the current crop of U.S.-market subcompacts in many ways.
6.8
The 2015 Toyota Prius C is the least expensive member of the Prius family, but it still manages mega gas mileage and its small size makes it great for crowded cities.
8.6
The 2015 MINI Cooper hardtop is a slightly larger car with all the virtues of earlier MINIs and fewer drawbacks; it's nicer and quieter inside, the base car is closer to the Cooper S in performance, and it retains the rollerskate handling and cheeky character it's always had.
6.8
The Fiat 500 is one of the most stylish ways to choose a small car today, and the Abarth and Turbo models add more excitement for the driver.
MSRP From     
$15,665$14,845$19,540$20,700$13,270$16,845
Gas Mileage     
36 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy30 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy53 MPG City / 46 MPG Hwy24 MPG City / 40 MPG Hwy34 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy28 MPG City / 40 MPG Hwy
Engine     
Regular Unleaded I-4Regular Unleaded I-4Gas/Electric I-4Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-3Premium Unleaded I-3Premium Unleaded I-4
EPA Class     
Minicompact CarsCompact CarsCompact CarsMinicompact CarsTwo-SeatersMinicompact Cars
Style Name     
3-Door HB (SE)3-Door Liftback Manual L (SE)5-Door HB One (Natl)2-Door HB2-Door Coupe Pure2-Door HB Ribelle *Ltd Avail*
Drivetrain     
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
455424
Passenger Doors     
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Body Style     
HatchbackLiftbackHatchbackHatchbackCoupeHatchback
Transmission     
CVT w/ODManual w/ODCVT w/ODManual w/ODAuto-Shift Manual w/ODManual w/OD