Future Models - Scion 2008 xB

Scion 2008 xB X-car: Scion's chances here depend largely on Japan's Scion plans.

X-car: Scion's chances here depend largely on Japan's Scion plans.

Toyota's youth brand shows all-new cars in Chicago - and they could head our way

SHARING the limelight with the all-new Highlander/Kluger on Toyota’s stand at the Chicago Auto Show last week was the new-generation Scion xB and the all-new xD compact cars.

Toyota Australia has repeatedly said that if right-hand drive versions became available, the youth-oriented Scion brand would be a strong candidate for sale Down Under. A spokesperson told GoAuto this week that Scion was still under consideration for Australia, with a decision hinging largely on whether Japan took the brand.

Currently, only three models are sold in the US: the $US13,360 ($A17,320) five-door xA hatch, $US14,610 ($A18,940) boxy xB van and $US16,980 ($A22,017) small tC coupe.

As far back as 2004, Toyota Australia’s chairman emeritus John Conomos has said he would like to see Scion introduced once the range expanded and right-hand drive models were available. The arrival of the xD brings the Scion line-up to four.

Scion’s US vice-president Mark Templin described the xD as having a "clever new take on the five-door urban sub-compact, with style and flair to match its efficiency and utility".

Scion2008 xB center image"The xD’s aggressive styling is wrapped in a small, agile package, while its interior offers impressive details and a spacious cabin," he said.

The xD has a 95kW 1.8-litre VVT-i engine, while the xB has a Camry-sourced 117kW/220Nm 2.4-litre VVT-i unit. Both drive the front wheels through either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic gearbox.

The xD features front bucket seats and 60/40 split-fold rear seats that provide a flat cargo floor. The rear seats can slide forward and back up to 120mm for additional legroom and cargo area. They also recline 10 degrees and offer five different positions.

Standard kit includes 16-inch steel wheels and 195/60 R16 tyres, electric windows, door locks and mirrors, remote keyless entry, air conditioning, ABS with electronic brake distribution and brake assist, dual front, side and curtain airbags, a first-aid kit and a tyre-pressure monitoring system.

The model now symbolic of the Scion brand, the xB has a similar level of equipment to the xD plus a 160-watt Pioneer audio system with iPod connectivity. The xB sits on the same 2600mm wheelbase as the Corolla but is 65mm wider, 120mm higher and 69mm longer than the current Corolla hatchback.

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