2006 Scion xA Hatchback Review | Edmunds.com

2006 Scion xA Hatchback


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Scion xA Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.5 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 103 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 27/34 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2006 Scion xA

  • Roomy and well equipped, the spunky Scion xA is one of the best buys for 2006 in the economy car segment.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Handles well for an economy car, lengthy standard equipment list, comfortable seats, easy to load cargo, better deal than Toyota's Corolla.

  • Cons

    The cool stuff costs extra, modest passing power with automatic transmission, no cruise control.

  • What's New for 2006

    For 2006, the Scion xA gets a mild styling refresh that includes updated designs for the lower air intake, headlamps, taillamps, wheel…

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (163 total reviews)

Best new driver car and

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 4A)

I got this car in 2010 a few days after I passed my driving exam. This was the first car I drove on the highway, and it taught me everything I need to know about safety driving. I bought it with 40,000mi on it and now I'm up to 90,000. This car has taken 4 1300mi trips from Upstate NY to Florida, a trip to Myrtle Beach, monthly trips to NYC, weekly trips to Niagara Falls, and much MUCH more. It has never failed on me and I only had a minor issue (around a hundred bucks in repairs) once. It's a fantastic car and I'm planning on driving it until it can take no more, which I know will not happen for another few years.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Excellent xa!

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 5M)

After owning various small cars: - '56 VW bus - Ducati 160 - 1956 Chevy Carryall (stovebolt 6 - $25 very used) - Fiat 1100 R - 2nd car best, Dunlop's, non-syncro 1st led to next car (ex could not figure out 1st) - Toyota Corolla (2TC hemi 1600) only lasted 439,000 miles! - Plymouth Champ (8 speed 1600) - '74 Bug - '85 RX-7 (oh well - sports car days) - '91 Geo Metro - 56 mpg until vacuum lines died - Now driving '04 scion Xa (154,000 miles so far) Wonderful, the best of the lot as to handling, seating, view out (although rear blind spots.) Optioned w/ rear anti-sway bar, front tower brace, handles like a go-cart, twice the power compared to the Metro

Great car

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 5M)

I have been looking for a O.K. priced mpg 2 wheel F.W.D. ...I have had 4x4 trucks, off road "ROCK CRAWLERS" & they all get poor mpg 10 to 13 was best!!!! I have gotten out of "OFF ROADING" &wanted a good ,fun , reliable, car for myself & after much, much, much reserach I bought a "SCION XA" & I'm loving it!!!!!! I have found after driving it for 5mo. there is a awfull glare off the dash (after getting used to the speedo location) so I bought a "DASMMAT" cover & had all windows tinted....MUCH BETTER....

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Great car for a teenager

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 4A)

Bought this car used for our teenage daughter, and it's a blast to drive. Small, so easy to maneuver and park. Gets great gas mileage. Just rough enough for the driver to feel the road (important for new drivers). Hard to beat Toyota reliability, and it even looks cool. The 4 star safety rating across the board was good, but the car we have has all the air bag options, so that's even better. Nice sound system too which is more important to the younger crowd, and ours has the optional iPod input. Great for shorter drivers. You sit up high more like in an SUV, so it's easier to see out of this car than my 2005 Honda Accord. Chain instead of timing belt helps keep maintenance to a min.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

I've been meaning to write

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 4A)

When I was shopping far my first car in 2008, I had relied a lot on edmunds.com reviews. I was fortunate enough to see a scion xA for sale near me and immediately looked into it. I've been meaning to put my 2 cents on here about this car: I LOVE IT. If you are on the fence about going with a scion xA, hop the fence, and go get that car. It's extremely efficient, fits everywhere, fun to drive, impressively roomy for such a small design, and just a really great vehicle. I'm so glad I went with it, great first car, looking forward to keeping it that way for many years to come. I've had it for four years and I'm still always happy to see it in front of my house!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Nifty thrifty handy dandy

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Vehicle: 2006 Scion xA 4dr Hatchback (1.5L 4cyl 4A)

PRos: -Excellent on gas (better than my bf's 03 civic hybrid) -Standard Mp3 AUdio Aux -Sits high which gives the illusion of more space & provides the driver w/false bravatto in traffic -Rear-seats fold down for strange situations that require adequate storage Cons: -Blind Spots -WIde handling on turns -Slippy-slides in rain -Poor AC power (On the highest setting, its not comparable to a low setting on my 03 Saturn Ion) -Low placement of cup holders, similar to a truck (I dropped a tea on the floor of the car, a wk after I owned it trying to get it into the cup-holder) Conclusion: It can provide flat-bed space, low maintanance costs & poor AC power but your pockets will smile!

Gas Mileage


  • 27
  • cty
  • 34
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Other xA Years


Full 2006 Scion xA Review

What's New for 2006

For 2006, the Scion xA gets a mild styling refresh that includes updated designs for the lower air intake, headlamps, taillamps, wheel covers and front grille. Inside, there is new seat fabric and the speedometer background is now white instead of last year's silver. The xA also receives a new steering wheel with audio controls, and the Pioneer audio system has a new head unit design and remote mini-jack port for portable music sources. Additionally, the xA offers dedicated Apple iPod connectivity, which delivers iPod display information and allows unit control and recharging through the audio system. Finally, the xA's horsepower rating drops from 108 to 103 due to new SAE testing procedures.


With the Scion car brand, Toyota is making a credible effort to understand the Generation Y market and give it what it wants without pushing it down its throat. Housed within Toyota dealerships, Scion salespeople are instructed to play it straight with consumers -- this means no-haggle pricing similar to Saturn dealers and the ability to get a car the way a customer wants it in about a week. And by offering over three dozen dealer-installed options, Scion hopes to give its buyers unprecedented opportunity to customize their cars on the front end.

Much has been made of the Scion xB, which looks like nothing else on the market, save for a passing resemblance to Honda's Element. In addition, it has tremendous passenger- and cargo-carrying capability for its size, making it an inexpensive way to lug about friends and gear. The smaller xA five-door hatchback, meanwhile, could almost pass for a regular Toyota. From some angles, it looks like a big-headed toddler version of the Matrix. And indeed both cars emphasize space efficiency through their tall seating positions and easy-folding rear seats. True, the Scion xA can't hold anywhere near as much stuff as the Matrix, nor does it have a wipe-clean load floor with cargo tracks, but with a base MSRP around 13 grand, we'll cut it some slack.

So what do you get for your money? Antilock brakes, air conditioning, a six-speaker Pioneer stereo with a CD player, a 60/40-split-folding rear seat, a tachometer and power windows, locks, mirrors and steering -- in short, an impressive list for the lower end of the economy car segment. For comparison, most of this stuff is optional on the similarly sized Echo, and adding these items can quickly push its price above $15 grand. The only factory option on the Scion car is a set of side airbags for the front seat and full-length head curtain airbags (everything else is added a la carte at the dealership). Throw in a pleasant driving demeanor, and the well-equipped, reasonably priced 2006 Scion xA definitely begins to sound like a good car for someone under 30 -- and we daresay, someone of any age.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The Scion xA is sold as a single trim level. Each one comes with ABS; air conditioning; power windows, locks, mirrors and steering; a six-speaker Pioneer stereo with a CD player and remote mini-jack port; a rear wiper; rear defroster; a tachometer; and a 60/40-split-folding rear seat. The only factory option is a side airbag package, but there are about 40 dealer-installed options. This list includes a CD changer, satellite radio, a subwoofer, alloy wheels, a roof rack, keyless entry and a lighting kit for the footwell, just to name a few. Those seeking to eke out a bit more performance can opt for a strut tower brace and/or a cold air intake.

Powertrains and Performance

Under the hood is a 1.5-liter inline four-cylinder with variable valve timing. It's the same engine used in the Echo and xB, and it makes 103 horsepower. This isn't a lot by modern-day standards, and as the xA weighs almost 300 pounds more than the Echo, acceleration isn't as spirited. Still, the Scion xA has enough get-up-and-go for city driving, and it cruises along nicely on the highway. Passing maneuvers require a little more effort, particularly on cars with the four-speed automatic. A five-speed manual is the other transmission choice. Gas mileage is rated at 31 city, 37 highway with the automatic and 32/38 with the manual.


The Scion xA comes with antilock brakes with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, three-point belts in all five seating positions and a first aid kit. Side airbags for front occupants and full-length head curtain airbags are optional. An xA without side airbags earned four out of five stars in all government front- and side-impact crash tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

Inside, the Scion xA is perfectly agreeable for an economy car. Various surfaces have been trimmed in faux aluminum that's more attractive than the stuff you'll find in some Toyotas. Lots of hard plastic is inevitable at this price, but most of it is low in gloss. The gauge cluster is mounted in the center of the dash and takes some getting used to. A tall cabin design yields a spacious feel and allows occupants to sit tall. Although the xA's backseat isn't as roomy as the xB's, its dimensions are on par with those of the larger Toyota Matrix. With the rear seats in use, there isn't much cargo space. Fold the seats and you'll have 32.8 cubic feet.

Driving Impressions

Although the 2006 Scion xA is built on the same platform as the Echo (a car we've never considered a good handler), it's amazing what a set of 15-inch wheels and tires and a rear stabilizer bar can do. On the highway, the xA feels nicely connected to the road. Driven enthusiastically around a few twists and turns, the xA is more entertaining than its economy origins would suggest. While enthusiasts would be better served by a Mazda 3 or Civic, most drivers will be satisfied with the Scion's ride and handling.

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