Scion iQ Review
The 2014 Scion iQ ranks 38 out of 41 Affordable Small Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Scion iQ, as well as reliability and safety data.
Automotive writers say the 2014 Scion iQ sips gas and is a cinch to park, but rival cars are cheaper, more spacious and more refined.
With its four-cylinder engine, reviewers say the iQ has no trouble zipping around the city. However, the engine is quite loud and the iQ strains when climbing hills or passing on the highway, they report. The continuously variable transmission (CVT) isn’t very responsive, and saps the joy out of driving the iQ, auto writers note. The iQ gets an EPA-estimated 36/37 mpg city/highway, which is near the head of the small car class. Test drivers say the iQ handles adequately on smooth roads and is a cinch to park thanks to its diminutive size and tight turning radius. However, they note that on the highway, the car is susceptible to crosswinds and feels less stable.
Reviewers report that the 2014 Scion iQ’s interior is made with cheap plastics, but they say that a few nice textures and accents give the cabin a pleasant feel. They like that there’s plenty of room in the front seats and that the dashboard is set farther back on the right side, allowing for the front passenger to move forward and provide sufficient legroom for a rear passenger. The iQ comes with a six-speaker Pioneer audio system with a 6.1-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth, an auxiliary jack, a USB port, keyless entry, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and power door locks and windows. A premium BeSpoke audio system with navigation is available as a dealer-installed accessory. Reviewers say the iQ’s climate controls are conveniently placed and easy to use. They’re impressed with the standard high-tech audio system, saying it offers many options for connecting to a smartphone, including a USB port, auxiliary jack and Bluetooth. The optional BeSpoke audio system adds navigation and integrates with smartphone apps like Facebook and Trip Advisor.
- "The 2014 Scion iQ is a minimalist metropolitan runabout that gets great fuel economy and can be parked practically anywhere. There are larger, more practical cars that cost about the same, though." -- Edmunds
- “There's no getting around the Scion iQ's pint-size dimensions, which limit both passenger capacity and its ability to cruise comfortably at higher speeds. Slightly larger cars such as the Ford Fiesta, Kia Rio, Mazda Mazda2, Chevrolet Sonic and Mini Cooper offer a more solid ride and similar (or better) highway fuel economy." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "In all, the Scion iQ is a fine exercise in space-efficiency, but it's neither good value nor a brainy small-car choice except for those who can live with the compromises of its minimalist design." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
- “The tin-hearted halfling you see here is pricey-$16,000, in the ballpark of a Ford Fiesta or Mazda2 or the sublime Honda Fit-it's slow (about 12 awful-sounding seconds to 60 mph), and it's about as sexy as a hairy nose wart." -- The Wall Street Journal (2012)
Other Cars to Consider
Reviewers say the Mazda Mazda2 has great handling and is one of the more enjoyable hatchbacks to drive. The Mazda2’s steering is accurate and responsive, they add, and a tight turning radius makes it easy to park and maneuver in small spaces.
Reviewers say the Ford Fiesta is fun behind the wheel, thanks to its small size and athletic handling. In contrast to the iQ’s interior, test drivers say the Fiesta’s cabin is made with upscale materials and is one of the nicest in the class.
Details: 2014 Scion iQ
The four-seat 2014 Scion iQ has front-wheel drive and comes in one trim. A four-cylinder engine and a continuously variable transmission (CVT) are standard. The iQ was introduced for the 2012 model year and has seen few changes since then, so this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2012 to 2014 model years.