2013 Scion FR-S: Real-World Acceleration
August 8, 2013
Recently, we tested the acceleration of our Innovate Motorsports supercharger-equipped long-term 2013 Scion FR-S. A handful of commenters seemed perplexed by the fact the 0-60 time didn't see an even-larger improvement compared to the baseline non-supercharged run.
As explained in the original Track Tested piece, traction was an issue. And when it comes to 0-60 times, traction is king.
When we tested the FR-S against the Veloster Turbo a while back, I reckoned that each car had an asterisk next to their 0-60 times, for opposite reasons. The upshot is it's easy to get a dismal 0-60 time in a stock (or stockish) FR-S. The technique that delivers the best result involves revving the beejezus out of the engine, finessing the clutch just so, and spinning the tires almost all the way through first gear, making sure not to spin them too hard because that hurts the number. Oh, and don't forget: You have two gear changes to nail in the process, so don't muff them.
Get any of the aforementioned facets wrong and the FR-S's 0-60 time worsens dramatically. Never mind that it's an exercise that few will ever attempt in the real world, and those that do will it find difficult to execute properly in order to match our published numbers.
Real-world, around-town acceleration is arguably better represented by a yardstick that's not so sensitive to traction. With that in mind, I parsed through the acceleration data, before and after the supercharger, to glean 30-50, 50-70 and 70-90 mph times:
FR-S before supercharger:
30-50 mph: 2.6 sec
50-70 mph: 3.6
70-90 mph: 5.2
FR-S with Innovate Motorsports supercharger:
30-50 mph: 2.2 sec
50-70 mph: 3.1
70-90 mph: 4.3
See the difference now? Whereas the 0-60 time only improved by 0.2 seconds with the supercharger, much, much larger improvements are observed among acceleration metrics that don't hinge on launch traction and technique. These are the kinds of improvements that are readily apparent every time you lay into the throttle of our supercharged Project FR-S.
Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor