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Scion iQ Review

The 2015 Scion iQ ranks 15 out of 17 Affordable Subcompact 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.

The 2015 Scion iQ is ranked:

The 2015 Scion iQ may be easy to park and get excellent fuel economy, but its rivals cost less, are more spacious and a lot more fun to drive, according to critics.

Test drivers agree that the 2015 iQ’s four-cylinder engine delivers adequate power for city driving but strains during highway passing and merging. An automatic transmission (CVT) is standard, and auto writers say it makes the engine drone loudly during acceleration. The 2015 iQ gets an EPA-estimated 36/37 mpg city/highway, which is fantastic for the class. Reviewers write that the iQ’s small size makes it very easy to maneuver into parking spaces. However, they say that the iQ’s rivals are more agile, and that its ride lacks composure on the highway as well as on rough pavement.

Automotive journalists report that the 2015 Scion iQ has hard plastic cabin materials, though that is common in this class. Most critics think the iQ has comfortable front seats, but they wish the driver seat had more adjustments. Reviewers like that the iQ’s dashboard is set farther forward on the passenger side than on the driver’s side, which means there’s enough legroom for an adult to sit in the right rear seat. However, test drivers say the left rear seat is only large enough for a child. The iQ has almost no cargo space with the rear seats in use. Standard features in the 2015 Scion iQ include Bluetooth, a 6.1-inch touch-screen infotainment system, a six-speaker Pioneer audio system, an auxiliary audio jack, a USB input, HD Radio, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and keyless entry. A premium BeSpoke Audio system with smartphone app integration and navigation is available as a dealer-installed accessory. Auto writers say the iQ has simple interior controls, and they report that the Pioneer audio system delivers great sound quality.

  • "Clever packaging means that, despite its diminutive dimensions, four passengers can squeeze in for short trips. However, an unrefined transmission makes for a noisy driving experience, and it's worth noting that significantly larger and more practical cars can be had for the iQ's price." -- Left Lane News
  • "If you need a small car that doesn't feel like a badminton birdie being bandied about when traveling on the freeways, an equally efficient but slightly larger Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta or Chevy Spark makes a much better choice." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Overall, the Scion iQ has some appeal, but unless ‘parkability’ is your top priority, larger subcompacts are simply better values." -- Edmunds
  • "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)

Scion iQ Pictures & Videos

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Other Cars to Consider

The Honda Fit has a lower base price than the iQ, and it has more than three times as much overall cargo space. The Fit also gets better highway fuel economy, and test drivers appreciate its composed highway ride and large back seat.

Automotive journalists love the Chevrolet Sonic’s sharp handling, smooth ride and spacious rear seat. Just like the Fit, the Chevy Sonic has a lower starting price than the iQ and significantly more cargo space.

Compare the iQ, Fit and Sonic »

Details: 2015 Scion iQ

The 2015 Scion iQ is a two-door, four-seat hatchback. It is available in one trim and comes with a 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine, a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive. The iQ was introduced for the 2012 model year and has seen few changes since, so this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2012 through 2015 model years.

See 2015 Scion iQ specs »

Review Last Updated: 1/30/15

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