2008 Scion xB Long-Term Road Test


2008 Scion xB: You Can Blame Me

September 04, 2007

2008 Scion xB at the home of the Arizona Cardinals

In the long-term introduction to our 2008 Scion xB, it was mused that "We went with Hypnotic Teal Mica. We're not sure why; none of us like it much." Well, the answer to both of those can be "me." I happen to like it, and in fact I can take some of the credit (or blame) for us going with this unusual non-metallic color.

When I heard that we were getting a Scion xB, I was saddened by the initial silver color choice and barren options selections. This was a Scion, and the box to boot -- the whole point is to load it up with oodles of mostly useless dealer-installed options like multi-color mood lighting and other items you'll hear about over the course of the year. As for the color, I thought it looked pretty nifty in pictures (it looks best in brighter light) and the Hypnotic Teal would certainly make it stand out (even more) amidst a sea of silver and metallic grey. Any way, having urged us to get this particular Hypnotic Teal oddity, I decided shortly after the xB showed up to see if my initial affection for this car would last over the course of a road trip from Los Angeles to Phoenix and back.

The xB proved to be an excellent travel companion. It desperately needs a telescoping steering column, but this is the first small Toyota I've driven that offers enough leg room and support for my long legs. The huge 69.9 cubic feet of trunk space (bigger than our Ford Edge) swallowed two sets of golf clubs, a full load of laundry, a Costco-sized pack of Charmin and thousands of car magazines I was donating to our library. The new torquey 2.4-liter four-cylinder is excellent, but the xB needs either a larger gas tank or better fuel economy (I got less than 25 mpg), as I needed to stop earlier than usual.

The xB offers 69.9 cubic feet of cargo capacity

Another complaint surrounded the touchscreen navigation system's iPod interface (which I also lobbied for), but Dan Edmunds will cover that in full detail later in the week. In short, it should be fantastic, but Toyota's electronic nannies have ruined it. All in all, I'm a big fan of our Hypnotic Teal xB and am looking forward to more trips throughout the year.

Read the Introduction to the Scion xB on Edmunds.

James Riswick, Associate Editor @ 2,439 miles

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