2. Hence, a descendant; an heir
Scion is the relatively new youth-oriented marque of Toyota Motor Sales, Inc. It was formed "to satisfy a trend-setting youthful buyer through distinctive products and an innovative, consumer-driven process." Scion's instantly-recognizable compacts are aimed at the 25-and-under market. If you are over 30 years old, you probably will not get it. You aren't supposed to.
The Scion xA is a five-door hatchback reminiscent of a scaled down Toyota Matrix. Pseudo-sporty features include side skirts and a chrome exhaust tip. The 1.5-liter engine has Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence (VVT-i), and makes just over 100 horsepower and 100 pound-feet of torque. A "sport-tuned" suspension gives the 2300 pound xA surprisingly nimble handling.
The Scion xB is a five-door ... hatchback? More than anything, its design calls to mind the box that Mini Coopers are shipped in*. If not that, then picture a GMC Safari shortened, chopped, lowered, and sporting a full body kit. The xB gets attention. It is directly adapted from the Japanese-market bB ("Black Box"), which was designed for the already box-filled streets of Tokyo. The xB is powered by the same engine as the xA, but is heavier and much less aerodynamic.
The Scion tC is the first Scion designed exclusively for the American market. It is a sporty three-door notchback with surprisingly exotic styling. It has a 2.4-liter dual overhead cam four-cylinder that produces 160 horsepower. Like the other models, it features such things as chrome tailpipe trim and wheel covers designed to mimic the optional alloy wheels.
Scion options are different than most car companies. Many car companies are still offering CD players as optional, while Scion has a standard CD player and optional Bazooka subwoofer. Scion does not offer audio cassette players. Also optional are color-coded pedals, shift knobs, and brightly colored interior LED lighting (in the style of aftermarket neon kits). Cold air intake kits, lowering springs, and even a tC supercharger are all available from Toyota Racing Development, and are covered under warranty when purchased and installed at a Scion dealership.
All the other car companies pointed and laughed when Toyota wanted to go after young buyers. This was the company that made the boxy-boring Corolla that kept going for decade after sensible decade. Anyway, kids young enough to like these cars certainly don't have the money to buy them.
Who's laughing now?
*I wish I had come up with that joke. I don't remember where it's from.