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#1 of 32 Is Scion Toyota's Saturn?
Oct 03, 2009 (3:23 pm)
Scion sales are down by more than the industry average, and the brand seems to be losing its mojo. Is Scion experiencing a temporary setback, or is there a flaw in the business model of a separate youth brand?
There are probably many more differences than parallels between Scion and Saturn (hmmm, both names begin with "S" and end with "n," though), but does Scion have a long term future?
#2 of 32 they have plans
Oct 04, 2009 (1:51 am)
to sell the new iQ and a new RWD sport coupe (co-developed with Subaru) under the Scion name, so I think the brand will be given at least a few years to see if those models will rejuvenate it. But if things haven't substantially turned around at Scion by 2015, I think it will be toast.
The comparison between Scion and Saturn is stretching it, as Scion is really just Toyota's youth brand, whereas Saturn was GM's attempt to out-Japanese the Japanese, including stand-alone dealers and a whole lot of very UN youth-oriented product (remember the little SW wagons from the first 8 years or so?).
In retrospect I think we will find the Scion experiment to be as unsatisfying as the Saturn one was. Both GM and Toyota could have sold these cars out of Chevy and Toyota dealerships quite easily without having to go to the expense of separate branding. They let their core brands get stale and uninteresting, and then they created a whole new brand to try and revive showroom traffic in the key demographics they had lost? Silly notion. They have only themselves to blame.
#3 of 32 Re: they have plans [nippononly]
by steve_ HOST
Oct 04, 2009 (8:29 am)
Plus many of the reliability reports on the Scion are way below that of Toyota.
#4 of 32 Re: they have plans [nippononly]
Oct 04, 2009 (8:42 am)
I look for the iQ to be better than the Smart. It'll be interesting to see how it competes against the base Fiat 500 (the more powerful and expensive 500 Abarth will compete against the MINI Cooper).
The RWD sports coupe (or sports car?) could be a strong contender against the Miata. I may be interested in this car, if the design and style are right. I like the Miata, but its styling just doesn't excite me. Although this new car will compete in a niche market, the discontinued Solstice and Sky will make some room for Scion's new entry.
In addition, Scion will be introducing the second generation tC. I've read that it'll be equipped with a version of the 2.7 four that's used in the Venza.
It'll be interesting to see whether these models spark renewed interest in Scion, beyond the first model year.
#5 of 32 Re: they have plans [hpmctorque]
Oct 04, 2009 (10:38 pm)
Yes, but even if these new models are successful, there is no reason they couldn't have added them to the Toyota brand instead and made that brand more interesting. Instead, they are conceding that the Toyota name is SO stale that no-one under 40 will shop it. If they are just going to concede that than it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy, and they are doomed in the long run.
#6 of 32 Maybe Saturn...
Oct 05, 2009 (7:13 am)
will end up being more like what Geo was to Chevy. Decent enough cars for the most part, but no real need for a separate identity, so it'll just ultimately get folded back into Toyota. Actually, I heard that when you buy a Scion, it's actually titled and registered as a Toyota. Is that true?
#7 of 32 Re: Maybe Saturn... [andre1969]
Oct 05, 2009 (7:51 am)
Yup, apparently it is a "Toyota Scion" on the title.
#8 of 32 Re: Maybe Saturn... [nippononly]
Oct 05, 2009 (7:52 am)
I wonder how Geos were titled? Would it have been "Geo", or "Toyota", "Suzuki", or "Isuzu", depending on who actually built the vehicle for them?
#9 of 32 Re: Maybe Saturn... [andre1969]
Oct 05, 2009 (1:16 pm)
It wasn't Chevrolet Geo?
#10 of 32 Re: they have plans [steve_]
Oct 05, 2009 (1:32 pm)
On the contrary,as per CR,Scion has higher reliability ratings than Toyota. And not "way below" as you say !