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FEATURES | 7 out of 10
If you're packing navigation software on your phone, opt for the Premium pack, pick up a phone mount for the dash and know you've made the better deal
the interior was a welcome contrast to the assault of technical features we sometimes find in new vehicles vying to set a trend in a particular segment
a ton of cash when you consider the plethora of larger and more practical cars available for less money
Car and Driver
plenty of accessories in the pipeline, including trick wheels
Edmunds' Inside Line
only works with Pandora on the iPhone, which has to be plugged into the car's USB port
The 2014 Scion iQ has few changes to its features and equipment from previous years. And while it's often compared to the two-seat Smart ForTwo, the iQ has a base price several thousand dollars higher--making it almost a premium style statement rather than just cheap, minimalist wheels. It's not nearly as basic as entry-level models of more conventional subcompacts, and it has few features that shriek "low cost".
Every Scion iQ comes standard with air conditioning; power locks, mirrors, and windows; and Bluetooth pairing for music streaming. One example of an upmarket touch: Both door windows have one-touch up and down, something rarely found on small cars even if the driver's window will descend with a single button push.
But audio and connectivity features--sometimes known as "infotainment"--are the main focus of the feature list. The Scion iQ has more available Pioneer audio systems (three) than it has doors (two). The base six-speaker Pioneer stereo, at 160 Watts, comes standard with HD radio, a CD player that handles all disc formats, USB port with iPod connectivity, an auxiliary input jack, and two RCA inputs. For 2014, Scion has made a 6.1-inch touchscreen display standard.
To get the navigation system, you'll have to step up to the top-of-the-line audio system. The $1,200 BeSpoke Premium system includes not only a navigation system but more than 30,000 stations from streaming audio from Internet radio, podcasts, audio books, and other online content via the Aha platform. Its 7-inch display will handle iPod video input, as well as DVDs--and it's set up to display images transmitted by an aftermarket backup camera, although that feature isn't offered from the factory. (Frankly, a look over the driver's shoulder probably does just as well.)
Like the rest of the Scion range, dealer customization is a huge part of specifying the car. Accessories are numerous, from 16-inch alloy wheels to performance parts like lower springs and a sway bar. Then there are dozens of appearance and trim upgrades, pretty much ensuring that any buyer can have a combination of features and accessories on a Scion iQ that no other U.S. owner has specified.
The 2014 Scion iQ has no more than its share of features, but lots and lots of dealer personalization options.