Daily Debate: Is Scion Still Cool?

June 24, 2008
2008 Scion xB

2008 Scion xB

This month's five-year anniversary of the Scion brand begs the question: Is Toyota's youth division too old to be cool?

When Scion was launched with the '04 xB and xA, they presaged a new generation of cheap-and-cheerful compacts to come. Everything from the Honda Fit to the Chevrolet Aveo owes Toyota a little debt for ratcheting down the race to get big, in terms of engines, bodies, and price tags. The boxy shape even managed to make an anti-car statement look like fun.

Now in year five, Scion's gears have been stripped a little. The second-generation vehicles, the 2008 xB and xD, haven't sold as well as the first range--and they've grown larger, less fuel-efficient, and less JDM (Japanese domestic market) in feel, which really strips them of their unique appeal. While still a huge hit, Scion's major wave has receded to a ripple while Ford preps a Fiesta and Dodge readies a Hornet that could crowd the segment even more.

Our gut reaction? Scion's salad days are over, but 100,000 of you each year will still ante up for Toyota's squared-off take on subcompacts each year. What's your take? Does Scion have the legs to run against the coming onslaught of Fits, Aveos, Fiestas, and Hornets?

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