Last post on Oct 13, 2006 at 2:43 PM
You are in the Scion xB
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Scion xB, Car Buying, Wagon
#1 of 42 Scion xB Test Drive - What Did You Think?
by pf_flyer HOST
Aug 04, 2006 (6:03 am)
Car shopping? Take a Scion xB for a test drive? Post your review here.
May 17, 2003 (5:24 pm)
Having driven one, I was also really impressed by the limousine-like room in the xB, even though the xB is about 20" shorter than the Civic. However since I would plan to keep the xB/xA for 5-7 years, I was disappointed that neither side airbags or side curtain airbags are available as an option like in the xA.
A few other things that would be nice to have: an armrest accessory (not one of those useless console/armrests which are usually too low), a height adjustable driver's seat, and an outside temperature gauge.
For me it's going to be a tough decision between the xA and xB.
#3 of 42 Drove one last night -- I'm in!
May 29, 2003 (12:00 pm)
I can't speak for the target audience, since I'm a 32-year-old married guy, but I do listen to techno.
I drove it last night; it looks much better in person than in the pictures, it has an amazing amount of room inside for such a small car, it handles like a tall go-kart, and the acceleration is decent (the first-second shift is w-i-d-e, but second through fourth are really close together, which keeps the engine in the power band).
I have a Sentra now (for economical commuting) and I was going to pick up a cheap used pickup truck for light hauling (furniture from IKEA, props for my wife's plays, gutters and molding, that sort of thing) -- but the xB can haul that sort of thing, gets better gas mileage than my Sentra, and is a lot more fun to drive.
So I'm sold. Anyone in the Southern California area want to buy a 2001 Sentra GXE 5-speed with 28,000 miles?
Jul 15, 2003 (10:28 am)
On my test drive I found that the xB has no problem keeping up with traffic, passing, and getting to highway speeds, at least with a manual transmission. I don't know how an automatic would do. I'd like to drive one with a factory cold air intake.
#5 of 42 xB: test drive
Aug 06, 2003 (11:07 pm)
People say that xB has unconventional, questionnable, controversial styling. Wrong. xB has no more styling than a shoe box or a doghouse. Face it, it is a moving box. And while there are some nice and cute boxes, like Nissan Cube, xB is just a parallelepiped with square panels, square windows and square headlights. It is just other cars that try to show some curvaceous individuality, that square-angled xB looks different. Hmm, have you seen Saturn ad with cardboard boxes on wheels? Yep, here is one.
But this is a pretty cool box. Its coolness is its functionality. "A car is not a luxury item, it is a means of transportation". Exactly. The car is huge inside. And I mean HUGE. Lots of headroom, lots of air between you and windshield, and just enormous rear legroom. After I set up the front seat for myself I sat on the rear seat. Boy, I did spread my legs almost straight! I am 6ft height. Of course, shoulder and hip room is smaller than in your family sedan, and the trunk fits just one suitcase. But you can fold rear seats, or even (as they say) can take them completely off.
I am not particularly fond of central instrumentation position, but I liked xB arrangement with speedometer/tachometer moved closer to driver side. xA with main cluster exactly on top of central console is too funky for me. For the record, I like the theme of "airplane cockpit" like BMW 3-series or SAAB cars have. Relatively soft plastic and cloth adds warmth and feel of quality. Seating is upright but I like it this way, my spine says OK.
The 5-speed shifter is OK, but the real jewel is the clutch. Pedal travel is short, but clutch takes on softly and gently, which is very helpful with relatively weak 1.5-liter engine. The clutch on my 3.0-liter Camry feels kinda "sporty" after xB: it is either engaged or not, and it takes special attention to make smooth gear changes. On xB it happens itself, without any hassle.
Engine is a sore story. Let's look on the fuel economy of the other, bigger cars. Focus: 2L, 30/36; P5: 2L, 31/36; Matrix: 1.8L, 30/35; Civic: 1.7L, 32/37. Now get this, xB: 1.5L, 30/34. Toyota, what this is about? I can understand that highway mileage is not exceptional because of boxy, high-profile shape. The proof of this is xA mileage, which manages to get 38mpg on a highway. But 30mpg in the city driving? What is the point of the smallish engine then? Put in 1ZZ-FE from Corolla/Matrix, and xB will make a decent car. I doubt that physical dimensions of 1.8 engine are that much bigger so it cannot fit xB engine bay. Anyway, a car with only 2400 lb weight and this smallish engine should have at least 35/40. Honda somehow managed to get 44 and even 46 on previous generation Civic.
Now when I am talking about the engine, I want to say that stuff under the hood is arranged very clever. While 1NZ-FE engine may seem small in displacement, its output is pretty good and on par with bigger 1.7-1.8 engines from other makers. Engine is very compact with intake manifold located on its front side and exhaust manifold located at the rear of the engine. Thus the under-floor cathalythic converter warms up as fast as the one located on the front side of the engine with more traditional layout. Right engine mount is located on the right strut console, somewhere in the middle of the engine height, not underneath the engine. This helps to reduce vibrations, which are barely noticeable from this little four-banger. The coolant expansion tank is made together with radiator cover in one big piece of plastic. Really clever and space-efficient. These small engineering jewels here and there add to my admiration of how much passenger space this car have with so little footprint. Heck, this is Japanese Toyota bB, they do not have a lot of highway space there, so they want to have the same comfort as we do in big fuel-thirsty sedans. Smart design.
The xB drives OK. I did not notice anything special about it, good or bad. Nice small responsive car. Inside it feels a little bit like in a minivan, but only when the car stands still. In motion is is predictable and firm. Yep, much firmer than my Camry. I did not know that that backroad had so many potholes... What do you want, 185/60R15 and firm suspention.
Anyway, I really liked the xB. Though xA styled more sophisticated, xB just talk business. Clean lines and lots of space inside. Here is your VW Bug of XXI century: maybe it is ugly, but it is very practical.
#6 of 42 xB back seat ride comfort??
Dec 03, 2003 (2:06 pm)
I took a test ride last week and spent some time in the back seat while my wife and salesman were up front. Back seat ride was really jumpy/ bumpy...anyone else have a similar opinion? We are looking for a small wagon to accommodate our first child in a few months, but the back seat ride makes me car sick, let alone a baby. Solutions? Different shocks or springs? Otherwise, we love the car and the price!
#7 of 42 GA test drive
Dec 06, 2003 (5:05 pm)
I had the chance to drive the bbx the other day, and since the "official" release is a round a moths or so away I took it.
It was an auto, loaded to the gills with options bringing the price to over $19k
I personally really really liked the car except for the fact it has so little useable space under its hatch (I wouldn't doubt its less than my 86 civic hatch)
but the power was good (though I would like to drive one on the highway wit ha few more miles on it this one only had 26 on it and I didn't want to totally tear it up)
I am really torn on the car I really like it other than the lack of cargo space with passengers. I really wish Toyota would have shoe horned a corolla engine into the car too plus the white speedometer really grates on my nerves.
I may be edging out of the target market though at 28 yrs old I am beginning to think the vehicle looks a little too "toy" like.
I liked it better than most of the cars I've test driven the past 2 years though, and as an added bonus they had already installed a cruise control (although it was the most backwards one I've ever used)
#8 of 42 1st Ride in xB
Dec 23, 2003 (7:21 pm)
Took a drive in an xB here in Durham, NC. Really cool vehicle...even if I am 39 years old! Love the back seat room and cool exterior styling. Needs more power...put a 160 horses and more torque under the hood and it would rock. Handles really well. The 18" wheels they had on demo look real good but would worry about so little rubber between rim and road hazards. My BMW 330i with 17" rims has a lot more rubber and I still destroyed a tire on a hidden pothole.
Side note, Fred Anderson Toyota had their xB demo given to the owner's daughter to drive all week, how stupid, so went to Toyota of Durham to drive.
Jan 07, 2004 (8:39 pm)
I finally got to test drive both models.
The xA had a harsh ride, but otherwise ok.
The xB was amazing. It drove great. The ride was excellent even with the 18 inch wheels that was on it. The driving postion was not bad either.
I wonder what the tC is going to be like (driving). I really thought getting the xB, but the tC looks just as great.
#10 of 42 Congrats, Ander
Jan 19, 2004 (11:43 am)
Even if the process is frustrating, it's nice to hear about a company standing behind its products.
Just drove the xB for the first time today. I was very impressed with how tight and agile it was. Even though this was an auto, I thought the acceleration was just fine. A little slow off the line, but plenty responsive otherwise.
We've had some snow recently and the roads are a little slick, but it handle some quick, fairly sharp turns with no fuss.
The dealership is one I swore I'd never visit again, but there was zero pressure. The salesman, good guy, wouldn't even take my name and number. Said he went to a Scion sales seminar and was flat out told not to "sell" the cars. Let customers ask questions but that's it.
Seems sort of smart: the serious buyers will self-select and no time wasted chasing people who won't buy anyway. Pricing is fixed -- he quoted me $14,165 for standard trans. Why would't that approach work with all makes?
Good luck on the replacement xB. Sweet car.