Scion iQ Concept Press Conference
2009 New York International Auto Show
Javits Convention Center, Galleria
Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 12:05 PM ET
Jack Hollis - Vice President, Scion
It’s hard to believe a year has passed since we were here to introduce the Scion Hako Coupe concept. New York has always been a great place for Scion to showcase new and exciting products because it’s a vibrant and inspirational city for youthful aspirations.
Many of you will remember that we officially launched the Scion line here in 2002 with the bbX concept. The past year has been incredibly busy at Scion. We celebrated Scion’s fifth anniversary with hundreds of our owners including many who drove thousands of miles just to be with us.
From this family gathering we created several advertising campaigns that focus on their passion for Scion. We created the ultimate project tC for Formula Drift competitions. We launched our first Release Series xD, as well as another Release Series for xB and tC.
We introduced Scion City, a social networking site that allows Scion owners to connect with each other. It's only been up a few months and we already have more than 1,000 customized garages created, with more joining every day.
Our business model has stayed consistent. It’s based on surprisingly versatile, uniquely-styled, high-content products; focused, grassroots marketing and advertising which doesn’t try to be "all things to all people"; a commitment to the creative community; and a transparent and simple sales process.
And we know our business philosophy is working because we’re accomplishing our goals. We still have the youngest median age in the industry at 35 years old.
More than 72 percent of customers are new to the Toyota family. We’re retaining our customers within our family of brands with half replacing a Scion with a Toyota, Lexus or another Scion.
In nearly six years we have almost 700,000 units in operation. In addition, we are the most ethnically diverse brand in the industry, keeping pace with the diverse growth in U.S. population and building brand security for the future.
And looking to the future, let’s talk about what we’re going to reveal. We’ve studied the FUSE, t2B and Hako Coupe concept vehicles all introduced here at the New York Show. As a result, elements of the t2B concept can be seen on our second-generation xB.
Just as we did with those “what if” cars, we’re here today to gauge response to an all-new concept. If the feedback is positive, we could add something like it to our future line-up. We’re considering many segments and are especially open-minded about future urban vehicles. The concept you are about to see is designed for the young city dweller who embraces the country’s new urbanism.
It has the surprise, style, and flexibility for today’s youth market in a very efficient and fun-to-drive package.
As more and more urban centers are revitalized with a new sense of purpose and energy young people are moving in from the suburbs to be closer to the things they like. They want the convenience of having work, entertainment, and culture nearby. For them a micro-subcompact car is a perfect solution for their progressive lifestyles.
These consumers appreciate creativity and are style-driven. Not only do these urban youth want a small, maneuverable car that can navigate narrow streets with impressive fuel efficiency, they want it to have compelling design and function. The answer is a small car capable of leaving a small footprint on the environmental landscape.
At more than two feet shorter than the typical subcompact, our concept takes the idea of city transportation, combines it with fuel and volume efficiency, and shows how these elements can be exciting and highly personalized. What we have is a car that’s both emotional and rational. It's all about what you need and what you want.
This is what we believe the future of personalized city transportation will be all about. And these values resonate with urban youth, especially when they come together in a stylish package that doesn’t compromise safety or technology.
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s my pleasure to present the Scion iQ concept.
How’s that for a download? The Scion concept that just dropped in is innovative and intelligent, but this "i" in iQ stands for individuality. We’re all about customization, so Five Axis of Huntington Beach, California helped us "Scionize" this concept with aggressive modifications that show its potential for personalization.
It's small, but fierce. If it should join our future line-up, I think it could reach iconic status like our xB because of its polarizing style and accessibility for personal expression.
To increase our iQ, we added 18-inch custom wheels to a micro-subcompact vehicle that’s just over 10 feet long. Pushing the wheels towards the four corners of the car gives the iQ a confident stance. Its wide and low presence is accented by a front air dam with a custom lower grille, narrow upper grille opening, high-intensity LED driving lamps, side skirts, and bubble flares that house the wheels.
Darkened aero headlights stretch the length of the short hood, while side mirrors with integrated turn signals enhance the vehicle’s smooth lines. The iQ’s high beltline runs across the doors and wraps around to the rear of the vehicle. A roof spoiler and thick rear diffuser emphasize the iQ’s trapezoidal rear shape which is echoed in a single exhaust centered in the rear.
The final piece of eye candy is a bright paint job. Depending on the light and angle it can take on a sci-fi yellow or green hue that really highlights the car’s unique features. That’s why we call it Radioactive.
Since Scions are social vehicles, we always like to include interactive entertainment features and the iQ is no exception. We’ve installed a retractable 10-inch panel LCD screen on top of the center cluster that serves as the main entertainment console. It also serves as the navigation system interface. With a few quick strokes, the audio system can shuffle through your music library to customize your listening experience. When not in use, the screen lays flat on the dash with a translucent cover that emits a colorful display of light patterns which give it that club-like vibe.
The screen opens with the push of a button so the driver or passenger can control the entertainment hub. If you just want to catch up on a movie while waiting for your friends you can watch it on the touch screen while parked.
The interior also features illuminated door handles; iridescent green and gray honeycomb upholstery that covers the seats and door panels; a swiveling spotlight that hovers over the dash; and an illuminated iQ logo on the passenger-side dash.
Under all this customization our concept reflects the real-world engineering genius of the production iQ, a finalist for tomorrow's "World Car of the Year" award.
The front-mounted differential and repositioned steering rack decrease front-end length. The iQ’s intelligent packaging provides a smarter interior that offers more than what you might think when looking at the exterior. Engineers worked hard to create a vehicle that has space for "three plus one." The front passenger’s legroom was increased with a newly engineered, compact air conditioning unit behind the center of the front console.
The center cluster features controls and displays for dual front heating and air conditioning settings. It’s equipped with active and passive safety systems that you are familiar with along with some new innovations like a nine-airbag SRS system which includes the world's first rear window curtain airbag.
We believe the Scion iQ micro-concept is the future of transportation. It blends function and style. Its size is perfect for maneuvering in heavy traffic and squeezing into tight parking places. The interior is large enough for a trip across town for you, a couple of friends, and a few belongings. Its styling will attract attention, and if it’s a Scion you know it’ll be easy to personalize.
We look forward to your feedback today and are eager to hear thoughts from our Scion owners. The iQ concept will be moved to the Scion exhibit on the main show floor on Levelthree later this afternoon. In the meantime, please visit our space where you’ll find a few of our vehicles that debuted at SEMA last year, including - the chop top Ruthless Cartel xD, Mike Vu xBt, and three highly modified Tuner Challenge tCs. The Scion team and I are here to answer any questions you may have. I hope you enjoy the rest of the show.
Thank you for joining us today.