2008 Scion xB Review
This review was written when the 2008 Scion xB was new.
Reviewers like the xB for its defiantly squary body, its four-cylinder engine, safety features, and reasonable price tag.
When it first appeared in 2003, the Scion xB caught the attention of buyers who were attracted toits low price, its customizability, and its unabashed boxy style. Scion's marketing strategy included a no-haggle price and a surprising lack of factory options, with features that aren't in the base model mostly installed by the dealer rather than the manufacturer. After skipping a model year -- there was no 2007 xB -- Scion is back with a redesigned hatchback that is bigger, sleeker, and more powerful than the original, and it ranks in the top tier of the hatchback class. Reviewers mostly like the changes, but think the new, less edgy xB lost some of the coolness of its predecessor. "I remember the original xB as being more fun," says Car and Driver. "I was in the mood for a scoop of funky and was hugely disappointed."
In the past, the xB's appeal has partially been its bargain price, and some note the redesign has sent that price upward. "Part of the first Scions' appeal was their budget-conscious nature," says AutoWeek. "The redesigned xB may see some consumer resistance when accompanied with...a significantly higher sticker price." Nonetheless, Car and Driver feels that that sticker price "is a good price for any car, but the xB is more distinctive than anything else in this price range."
- "If you're into quirky vehicles, you'll lament the disappearance of Toyota's (TM) boxy little Scion xB, which hit the market in 2004 and looked like a miniature bread truck. For most buyers, though, the new, completely redesigned 2008 Scion xB will be an improvement over the previous model -- with one glaring exception: Fuel efficiency is way down." -- BusinessWeek
- "This is still not an average-looking vehicle, just a more sophisticated one, especially with its smoother ride, crisper handling, more comfortable interior and an upgraded engine." -- Detroit News
- "It's bigger, heavier, unquestionably more mainstream, with a kind of American hot-rod conventionalism (the chop-top roof) supplanting the Asian preciousness." -- Los Angeles Times
- "While some bemoan the loss of the hard-edged styling, there's no denying that this all-new, softer-edged xB is a better car." -- Road and Track
- "Overall…the new xB is a larger, more refined package at the same bargain price. And that certainly appeals to us." -- Popular Mechanics
- "Built off a new, larger platform the original's lunchbox-on-steroids look has been refined into a kind of appealing postmodern transportation device worthy of a bit part in 'Blade Runner.'" -- Motor Trend