Fuel Economy Numbers Of New Scion FR-S Go Public

The market for small, rear-wheel drive coupes in the Canadian market is about to get a huge dose of adrenaline with the launch of the first-ever Scion FR-S. The stylish new brainchild of Toyota Motor Corporation and Subaru is not only a looker, or the epitome of four-cylinder road performance, but it’s also surprisingly fuel efficient, as the fuel economy ratings show.

The official United States EPA fuel efficiency numbers are in, and the Scion FR-S equipped with a six-speed manual transmission has been rated at 22 miles per gallon city and 30 highway on premium fuel, which can be converted as 9.41 L/100km combined fuel economy.

The FR-S will usurp even less fuel when outfitted with the optional automatic six-speed transmission with paddle-shifters — but the stick and clutch pedal are removed in the process. But with numbers close to 25 city/34 highway, (8.4 L/100 km combined) it’s hard to protest.

In brief, here’s what the 2013 Scion FR-S brings to the table:

  • 2.0-liter boxer with D4-S injection (direct and port injected)
  • 197 hp @ 7,000 rpm and 151 lb-ft (205 Nm) @6,600 rpm
  • 6-speed manual or automatic transmissions
  • 17-inch wheel/tire package standard
  • 4,240mm (167 in.) long, 1285mm (50.6 in.) high, 2,570mm (101 in.) wide
  • 53:47 front-to-rear weight distribution
  • 475mm (18.7 in.) center of gravity

The 2013 Scion FR-S is expect to go on sale in the spring of 2012. The high-performance rear-wheel-drive, no-frills performance coupe is the fifth model to join the Scion family, and has a set price for the Canadian market of $27,500.

With its introduction, the Scion FR-S brings a performance renascence to Toyota Motor Corp. One that nostalgically brings reminders of the legendary Toyota MR-2 and Supra from decades past. It’s truly a great time to be shopping Scion.

Demand For New Toyota Prius c Is Soaring

Back in December, when the Toyota Prius c first went on sale in Japan, the company received 120,000 orders in the first five days it was on sale. That’s pretty amazing, and the love for the Prius c has found its way to North America, selling 1,200 units in the first three days it was on sale in the United States. Because demand is so high, production of the little Prius c will be increased.

The Prius c, which starts at $20,950, is graced with an updated version of Toyota’s venerable 1.5 liter inline four cylinder engine. The enhancements help improve fuel efficiency with lighter weight valve springs, lighter tension weight piston rings, along with a few other items like the elimination of an accessory belt. In doing so, the power steering, air conditioning and water pump are all driven via electric motors to reduce drag and friction and improve fuel economy. This is paired with a Ni-MH battery pack that is about 2/3rds the size of the one found in the larger Prius, and provides an additional 25.9 horsepower to the c’s 73 horsepower engine. The transaxle in the Prius c is an all electric unit that has no belts.

The Toyota Prius c also carries on the family tradition of being incredibly fuel efficient. Rated by the American EPA at 3.5l/100km in the city,  4.0l/100km on the highway, and 3.7l/100km combined. For those that worry that this B-segment car is cramped inside, it is not. Front seat passengers have plenty of room, no fear of rubbing shoulders with your passenger. For back seat passengers, two normal sized adults will be able to ride comfortably. We had the drivers seat set for us at 5’11”, then jumped in the back seat behind and were able to get in and out with no problem, and our knees were not touching the back of the driver seat either.

The rear seats do fold in a 60/40 arrangement allowing for good load flexibility, bicycles and snowboards will have no problem fitting inside. With the seats up there is 484.2 liters of space in the hatch area, which should be more than enough room for day to day items, or runs to the grocery store.

First Drive: 2012 Toyota Prius c

It’s been twelve years since the Toyota Prius first came on to the American stage. Thought of as a science experiment then, and in many ways it was, now in it’s third generation the Prius Liftback IS the face of Toyota.

While the hybrid and plugin electric market may only be 2.5% of all vehicle sales in the U.S., the Prius accounts for more than 50% of those sales. The most shocking statistic is that 96% of all Prius’ sold, are still on the road today. Looking to expand the sales of the Prius, Toyota have expanded the sub-brand of Prius into four models, with the goal of the Prius family of vehicles surpassing Camry in sales

The first expansion of the Prius family was the v, not quite a crossover, yet more than a wagon, it was Toyota’s move to get growing and active families more space to fit their lifestyle without compromising fuel economy or the integrity of the Prius name. The Plug-in Prius will be the current Liftback model that will have the ability to drive 15 miles on pure electric, then revert back to a standard Prius Hybrid once the charge has been depleted. The last component is the source of our review, and that is the Prius c. It is a B-segment car, which will be competing against the likes of Toyota’s own Yaris and iQ, along with the Mazda2, Ford Fiesta, Chevy Spark, Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, Kia Rio and Hyundai Accent.

Powering the Prius c is an updated version of the venerable 1.5 liter inline four cylinder engine. It has been updated to improve efficiency with lighter weight valve springs, lighter tension weight piston rings along with a few other items like the elimination of an accessory belt so now that the power steering, air conditioning and water pump are all driven via electric motors to reduce drag and friction and improve fuel economy. This is paired with a Ni-MH battery pack that is about 2/3rds the size of the one found in the Liftback, which provides an additional 25.9 horsepower to the 73 horsepower engine. The transaxle in the Prius c is an all electric unit that has no belts.

Fuel economy is the raison d’etre in the Prius family and the Prius c will deliver that in spades. Rated by the American EPA 53 city (4.43l/100km), 46 highway (5.1l/100km) and 50 (4.7l/100km) combined. We had the opportunity to drive for a short 25 mile loop that was an equal mix of surface roads and highway. On the surface roads we pulled down 63.5 mpg (3.7l/100km) without really making an effort to maximize fuel economy, and at the end of the loop we had a combined 54.7 mpg, (4.3l/100km) and that was while driving highway speeds of 70-75 mph (110-120kph). Keeping with the rest if the Prius family, the c also has start/stop technology, so that the car is running only when it needs to when stopped in traffic. If you are in stop and go driving, this is an excellent way to save a few extras drops of fuel.

Lest you think this B-segment car is cramped inside, it is not. Front seat passengers have plenty of room, no fear of rubbing shoulders with your passenger. For back seat passengers, two normal sized adults will be able to ride comfortably. We had the drivers seat set for us at 5’11”, then jumped in the back seat behind and were able to get in and out with no problem, and our knees were not touching the back of the driver seat either.

The rear seats do fold in a 60/40 arrangement allowing for good load flexibility, bicycles and snowboards will have no problem fitting inside. With the seats up there is 484.2 liters of space in the hatch area, which should be more than enough room for day to day items, or runs to the grocery store.

In the upper trim levels Toyota have made Softex synthetic leather an option. Listening to their consumers, Toyota have eliminated the use of natural leather in the Prius family of cars. The Softext in our test car, was comfortable, had a quality feel to it, and was grippy so that we did not slide around in the seat.

There will be four trim levels to the Prius c, One, Two, Three and Four. Stepping up to trim level’s Three and Four will net you a smart key, which offers the ability to not have to take the key out of your pocket to get in the car, or need it for starting. The upper two levels also get you the top end audio system with navigation. It has a 6.1 inch touch screen with AM/FM/SirusXM/HD Radio and also will play CD’s along with MP3 and WMA files through a six speaker system.

All trim levels have bluetooth as standard but trim levels Three and Four allow for advanced voice recognition. The top end audio system also includes Entune. Entune is a system that Toyota have developed that works with the data connection on your smart phone to supply Pandora, iHeart Radio, OpenTable, MovieTickets.com along with real time traffic, weather, fuel prices, sports scores and weather to you.

You register on a specific Toyota website with your cars VIN number, and then you can assign up to four different phones to the system so that everyone can taylor the system to themselves, if multiple people in a household share the car.

The Prius c also contains a 3.5-inch (8.9 cm) TFT display to the right of the offset digital speedometer. There are multiple levels of menus to explore within. Items like energy monitors, drive information, scoring the last 100 drives and how economical the current one is, 5-minute consumption. There is an ECO Savings level where you can program the current cost of gas in, and also the mpg of another vehicle to see how much you are saving with the Prius c. It also calculates the current cost of your current trip, and past trips, and brake it down into a cost per mile. It will also grade you on how economically you are driving and braking on a scale of 1-5 and display it in a bar graph.

Many people worry about safety in cars that are as small as the Prius c. To address this Toyota is including nine standard airbags along with items like ABS, traction control, vehicle stability control, brake assist, brake force distribution and smart stop.

Smart stop is a system that intervenes when both the brake and gas peddles are pressed at the same time. In a panic situation one might press down hard on both peddles without meaning to. The system senses this, and disengages the gas, it also incorporates a hill assist into the system so that if you are on a hill and stopped, you do not roll backwards when transferring from the brake peddle to the gas peddle.

Pricing (given in US Dollars) for the Prius c in trim level One starts at $19,710, Level Two is $20,760, Level Three is $22,395 and Level Four is $23,990, all prices include the $760 destination fee. While this is certainly on the higher end of the B-Segment price structure, cars like Ford’s Fiesta can quickly top $20,000 as well once they are optioned up. The base price of the Prius c is about a $2,000 premium over the Yaris to give some context.

Out on the road the Prius c drives very well. While the handling can’t be called sporty, it is very competent. It is very agile, has a better ride quality than the Prius Liftback or v, and also transmits less road noise through the tires than the Liftback or v as well. The Prius c engineers took extra time to mitigate as much NVH from the car as possible and their work shows.

Acceleration in city traffic from 0-40 (0-65kph) miles an hour is good, though not quick. Merging onto the highway the power can be best described as adequate. It is able to get on to freeways and merge without drama, and while you may feel you need to be going faster or accelerating quicker, once you look at the speedometer, you will see you’ve already gotten up to the speed of surrounding traffic. The car can engage an EV mode where it can run up to a mile with a max speed of 25 miles (40 km) an hour.

The Prius c was able to run (120 kph) 75 miles an hour on the highway with no issues, it was not moved around by semi’s going past, it felt very stable, and the interior is quiet enough to hold a conversation in a normal tone of voice.

While the other versions of the Prius have never excited us all that much, we feel that the c is the first Prius that we can get behind. It truly was a fun and satisfying car to drive. In a time when gas is again approaching (on the rise again) $4/gallon in the U.S., having a car that can pull down (sub 5l/100km) 50 mpg is an attractive proposition. And when that proposition asks very few compromises from you, it’s even more so. No the car is not a sports car, or a sporty car, what it is, is a small car that gets the job done, can be well equipped, and you don’t mind driving. While in the past, and even now with the Liftback and the v, the Prius’ could be described as automotive appliances, the c does not have that vibe, it feels like a car first, a hybrid second.

Scion To Compete In Formula DRIFT Series With FR-S Race Car

With Scion being the youthful and ambitious brand that it happens to be, it only makes sense that it would enter a motorsport. Specifically, the Formula DRIFT series, which is hugely popular with the under-35 age demographic.

Up for the task will be the first-ever Scion Racing/GReddy FR-S race car, which will be piloted by veteran driver Ken Gushi. The 600-horsepower FR-S race car is the result of a collaboration between Scion Racing and GReddy, a performance-products company that has been involved with Toyota and racing for over twenty years.

The race car is inspired by the 2013 Scion FR-S, a compact rear-wheel-drive sports car that will go on sale in the spring of 2012. The high-performance rear-wheel-drive, no-frills performance coupe is the fifth model to join the Scion family, and has a set price for the Canadian market of $27,500 .