Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback

Used iQ for sale
List Price:$9,300
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Scion iQ model years
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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Compact agility
  • great fuel economy
  • lots of style inside and out.
  • Comfortable only for two
  • sleepy performance.

The 2012 Scion iQ is a minimalist metropolitan runabout that gets great fuel economy. Style and utility are the messages here, not driving excitement.

Vehicle overview

The future has arrived and it's come in a pocket-size urban runabout designed for utility, not speed. The 2012 Scion iQ measures barely 10 feet long, can spin around in a turning circle about the size of two king-size mattresses and gets 37 mpg on the EPA combined cycle. Toyota reckons that this makes the Scion iQ the perfect expression of personal mobility as urban living becomes more popular among a younger generation in search of jobs and affordable housing.

You'll probably notice right away that there are less expensive cars that offer more interior room and power than the iQ. But this new Scion means to make smallness a virtue and fit in with the way that people really live in metropolitan areas. This means a car that is small on the outside and big on the inside. It's meant to feed on the leftover scraps of curbside parking found on the street, even as it offers a full-size experience when it comes to cabin comfort and electronic entertainment.

Though it looks like a grown-up Smart Fortwo, the Scion iQ actually performs like a downsize Toyota Corolla. It's usefully calm and composed, keeps pace with freeway traffic with confident stability and churns through city errands without protest. The combination of a 94-horsepower engine and a continuously variable transmission (CVT) gives it a kind of untroublesome performance that we might otherwise associate with an electric vehicle.

Of course, it is also slow -- probably slower than you expect, actually. To help make you feel safe in this very small egg among so many other large eggs in the traffic mix, this Scion has a full array of brake assist and stability control features, as well as no fewer than 11 airbags.

The Scion iQ lines up against the 2012 Honda Fit in price, which makes it actually more expensive than the base models of other compelling transportation modules, notably the subcompact 2012 Ford Fiesta and 2012 Hyundai Accent, as well as stripped-down models of compact cars like the Honda Civic and Mazda 3. Yet the 2012 Scion iQ holds its own because it comes only in one well-equipped trim level, plus it offers a sizable selection of Scion-style accessories that promise the opportunity of making an iQ as personal as a Mini Cooper.

At the end of the day, the 2012 Scion iQ suggests that it's time to uncouple size from price. This isn't a stripped-down car, only a small one. It gives you all that you want in terms of style and entertainment, yet no more than you need in size and speed. And the everyday reward comes in getting an EPA-rated 36 mpg city/37 mpg highway and 37 mpg combined while you're driving around.

2012 Scion iQ models

The 2012 Scion iQ is a subcompact hatchback available in a single trim level. The Scion iQ is equipped with 16-inch steel wheels, full power accessories, air-conditioning, a leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel with audio controls, a 50/50-split-folding rear seat, Bluetooth and a four-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD radio, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB port.

There are no official factory options for the iQ, but Scion offers an extensive catalog of accessories including 16-inch alloy wheels, shorter springs and stiffer antiroll bars, foglamps, body-side molding, mud guards and a rear spoiler. Among the interior options are illuminated door sills and an interior light kit, each with seven colors. Electronic options include a premium sound system with satellite radio and a navigation system.

2012 Highlights

The 2012 Scion iQ is an all-new model.

Performance & mpg

The front-wheel-drive Scion iQ comes standard with a 1.3-liter inline-4 engine good for 94 hp and 89 pound-feet of torque. A CVT is standard. In Edmunds testing, the iQ accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 11.6 seconds. This is pretty slow, though other similar cars aren't much better. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 36 mpg city/37 mpg highway and 37 mpg combined.

Safety

The 2012 Scion iQ comes standard with stability and traction control, antilock brakes (front disc and rear drums), front side airbags, front side curtain airbags, front knee airbags and three more airbags not commonly found in other cars -- front seat-cushion airbags and a rear-window airbag that deploys around the rear seat headrests.

In Edmunds brake testing, the iQ stopped from 60 mph in 131 feet, which is about 10 feet longer than average for a subcompact car.

In government crash testing, the iQ received four out of five stars for overall crash protection, with four stars for frontal-impact protection and three stars for side-impact protection.

Driving

The 2012 Scion iQ is small, but there's nothing basic about it. Utility rather than fun is the message here, yet there's no regret as you walk up, open the door and set off into the city. It offers such terrific turn-on-a-dime maneuverability that you're tempted to drive like a maniac, wheeling into impulsive U-turns, crowding into the bicycle lane and diving into the leftovers in curbside parking. You feel a little invulnerable, so maybe it's best that the iQ always feels slower than you'd expect from a 2,127-pound car with a 94-hp engine.

The iQ's sleepy responses seem to be the responsibility of the CVT, which transforms every throttle input into a tedious drone from under the hood. Nevertheless, the reward comes at the gas station, where the Scion seems to hit its EPA standard fairly easily.

You might expect the iQ to have a choppy ride on the highway given its short wheelbase, yet it delivers acceptable stability at speed and you never feel vulnerable to the oversize SUV monsters in the next lane. Crosswinds affect it, but that's about it for the bad manners.

Interior

As you'd expect, the Scion iQ is at its best with just two passengers. Nevertheless, the car has been engineered to maximize interior space sufficiently. Cleverness under the hood with component location and a compact air-conditioning unit integrated into the dash let the front passenger move the seat sufficiently forward to fit a full-size passenger into the narrow rear seat behind (we know; we tried it). Meanwhile, the remainder of the rear seat behind the driver can accommodate a child if need be. Think of it as a 3+1 seating configuration rather than a coupe's more common 2+2 designation.

If the mission of the day is to haul stuff instead of people, the 50/50-split rear seat folds flat to enlarge the cargo area from 3.5 cubic feet to 16.7 cubic feet. Other interior storage includes space for four 25-ounce containers in the doors, plus two rear cupholders in the rear and one in the center console. There is no glovebox, however, and the available space doesn't go far.

The Scion navigation is fairly basic as such systems go, but it's still far more effective than one that can be accessed by a mobile phone.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

4 out of 5 stars
Impulse buy. I'm very happy with it.
Like A Rock,08/12/2016
2dr Hatchback (1.3L 4cyl CVT)
UPDATE 12 FEB 2018 -- I sold my iQ. I miss it. I bought a pre-owned Toyota Yaris for more backseat and cargo room. Yaris is great but not as refined. The iQ was solid, mostly quiet. Cost of ownership and tires for a Yaris is less. // OLD iQ REVIEW: I bought a pre-owned base model, silver color. The base model still comes nicely equipped with stability and traction control, pw. pdl, great ac, great stereo and speakers, 1 usb, 1 aux, and 1 power port. My base model has hubcaps but I like the way they look over the alloy wheels I've seen on other IQ's. There are pros and cons about this car so I will start with the pros: It is one of the safest cars on the road, has 11 airbags, and drives and handles great. Steering is quick and precise, and it can turn around in a very small space making easy driving in traffic or lots. I don't have any trouble getting to speed on highway on-ramps, or passing vehicles when I need to. The engine is a 1.3L which is plenty big. I'm not going to knock other cars in this class because I have not driven them, but one car that's in the same class, but only has two seats, is sporting an engine almost half the size of the IQ, basically motorcycle size, and I don't think that's viable option for a long term vehicle. The 1.3L engine size has been commonly used around the World and has no issues. I actually belong to a Ford Festiva club in my area and those were made with 1.3L engines back in the 80s and 90s that were less refined than the Toyota IQ engine, and anyone that knows about Festivas they are one of the best basic utility cars ever made and many are still on the road today running like champs (including mine); some with 300k plus on the odo. The Scion IQ doesn't fall short in performance in my opinion. You won't be winning any races up the freeway ramp against bigger engine sports cars but it performs very well and will get you to proper speed...and don't worry nobody is going to blow your doors off it can make those other drivers sweat while they try to pass you. On the highway it doesn't want to cruise 55mph...it wants to go 85mph smooth and quiet so watch your speed it has plenty of juice. The automatic CVT transmission performs great, revs low, is easy to use, and has a power option for climbing steep roads. In town it also drives great and gets a lot of attention. They are not that common and people tend to gather around them when parked. The interior is designed cool, and controls are easy to use. The computer readout on the left side of the dash can give the driver all sorts of data including average mileage, a couple of trip odometers, eco on, clock, etc. Gas mileage for me has been better than the advertised 37 hwy and 37 city. I reset my trip odometer at every fill up and calculate my mileage mostly for fun, and in many cases I get a little over 40mpg which is a mix of city and city freeway. The CVT mentioned earlier is what makes this car perform so well. The one time I got less than 37mpg was a road trip to San Diego in which I drove a steady 75-80mph, steep hills, ac on, and averaged about 33mpg...still not bad. Cargo room is okay considering the size and length of this car. I mostly drive alone in it and just keep the backseats folded down to pick up packages, groceries, etc. The backseats are divided so you can fold one down if you have cargo and a back seat passenger. The car is really made for 3 adults, and one small child or cargo. The front dash on the interior is offset to allow the front passenger to sit forward a little more if needed so an adult can ride in back. I have seen video reviews of 4 adults in the car, and actually you could get a total of 5 in the car, but it's really a 3+1 car to be comfortable. Still, it's one of the smallest and best made (Toyota ) 4 seat cars in the World. ---- Cons: I really have no complaints, but here are a few cons to consider. Cargo room is limited if you haul large items other than mail packages and groceries. It doesn't have a spare tire, but it does have the commonly used electric air pump that plugs in the dash and the slime to pump into the tire. I have not used this on my car but did help a lady in a new model Hyundai who had a flat and it worked fine and got air back in her tire so she could seek out a tire repair or purchase. I honestly prefer to have a spare tire though. The tires are wide and perform very well, but it's an odd size P175/60R16 that only a couple manufacturers make (Goodyear is the recommended tire). The cost is about $153 each at the time I wrote this. Lastly, idiot drivers on the road that only use mirrors to change lanes might not see you. On one occasion I’ve had someone change lanes into my lane at night right next to me. They just don’t see you in their mirror because of the length. --- Overall, I love this car and I’m glad I bought it. The Toyota quality also gives me confidence in it. So far I’ve had one routine maintenance service at the Toyota dealer and it was fast and cheap.
4.75 out of 5 stars
Smarter than Smart.
deansmith,01/09/2012
2dr Hatchback (1.3L 4cyl CVT)
I traded in a 2008 Smart car on this 2012 IQ. A very smart move. This car is faster, more comfortable, more storage space, and seemingly better built. That last statement is based on hearing a "solid" sound when closing the doors. I also paid $18,800, because of the premium stereo, Sirius XM, fog lights, premium paint, fancy wheels, etc. This is NOT a stripped down econo-box...it rides, drives, and feels just like a "real" car.
4 out of 5 stars
2012 IQ will need $5K in engine work
Randy Johnson,08/13/2017
2dr Hatchback (1.3L 4cyl CVT)
All 2012 Scion IQ up to 2013 JTNJJXB0#DJ025093 were built with defective pistons. If you are thinking of buying one, unless a seller can prove they have had this work done, be prepared to spend $4.5K to have the pistons replaced. See service bulletin S-SB-0032-13. Toyota made me make a "good will" gesture of $1900 toward this repair. All of these cars should have been recalled. There's about 11,500 2012 - 2013 IQs involved. Outrageously dishonest of Toyota. I tried to apply the $1900 "good will" gesture toward purchasing the parts (I am capable of installing them myself) but Toyota would not agree. Even Toyota's mechanic thought they should have recalled the 11,500 cars in question and tried to help me get the repairs paid for by Toyota. Finally, I had Toyota replace the pistons. Toyota did pay the $1900. I paid the remaining $2000+. The car was using a quart of oil every 400 miles just before the repairs were made. Replacing the pistons corrected the problem. However, shortly thereafter the catalytic converter failed (plugged up from the high oil consumption). I bought the catalytic converter and replaced that myself for about $400. It would have been $1000 if I let Toyota do it. All these parts (pistons, catalytic converter, etc) are proprietary. You can only buy them from Toyota. You are at their mercy. Now, 30,000 miles later, the car is running strong and getting 35 - 37 MPG. I still like the car. Three months after the Toyota repair a Toyota representative called me up and gave me a verbal spanking for not paying the entire amount and waiting for Toyota to reimburse me the $1900. The Service Department had agreed to the way we handled it. I told the woman I would NEVER BUY ANOTHER TOYOTA new or used and that I am having a good time spreading the word on their terrible customer policies. I had a sign shop make a professional sign for the back window stating "Beware of 1,000's of Toyotas with Defective Pistons, Google it." I drive 100 miles a day in the Dallas, Metroplex. 1000's of people have seen that sign and dozens have asked me about it. I have all the paperwork and a nice picture of the car with the sign in front of their new headquarters building. You can see the picture on my FaceBook page. I guess after building that lavish new headquarters they can't stand the cost of standing behind their cars. You should Google Toyota defective pistons and see what comes up. It wasn't confined to just the Scion IQs. There are many, many more Toyota models with the problem. Review update 08-15-18: Car is running fine. Now at 171,000 miles, uses no oil. I still like the car but I will never buy another new or used Toyota because of the way I was treated. Five months after it was fixed a representative called me. They were not happy that the service manager allowed me to only pay the difference between the engine work cost and the $1900 "good will" gesture at the time the work was done. This made it easier for me to not come up with another $1900 and then have to wait to be reimbursed. I was shocked and it just reminded me how much I disliked how I was treated. I spent $75 and had a sign shop make a nice full rear widow sign that said "Beware of Toyotas with Defective Pistons." You can see it on my FaceBook page setting in front of the new Dallas Toyota Headquarters. I drive 100 miles a day through Dallas everyday. I know thousands of people saw that sign and it makes me feel much better. Screw 'um! Update 2-15-19: After replacing pistons at an out-of-pocket cost of about $2.5K, the car is running fine at 181,000. No other problems. I won't, however, be buying any more Toyotas.
4.88 out of 5 stars
I love my lil iQ
amadcow2,09/06/2012
2dr Hatchback (1.3L 4cyl CVT)
I was attracted to the iQ for the gas mileage at the onset, but quickly grew to admire the little car. The final decision to buy my iQ was made when my wife asked my children; 'What car do you see your dad driving?' The answer made my choice clear; 'The iQ' So I'm now driving a nice purple iQ with the following at time of purchase: Lowering Springs, Anti Sway Bar, Fog lights, Spoiler I put in the following aftermarket: Pioneer AVIC Z140BH, Injen Cold Air Intake I love my little iQ. It's peppy and handles very very well. I'm mostly happy with the gas mileage, knowing that it will get better as I break in the engine.

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

4 out of 5 stars
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall3 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall3 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat4 / 5
    Back Seat3 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover14.7%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Good
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Acceptable
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2012 Scion iQ
More About This Model

You can paint it up in zippy colors, make the interior glow and play the music loud, but the 2012 Scion iQ really relates to anyone looking for a place to park. And that's just about everybody, right?

The future has arrived and it's come in a pocket-size urban runabout designed for utility, not speed. The concept here is personal mobility, and it takes shape in a car that seats 3+1, measures barely 10 feet long, can spin around in a turning circle about the size of two king-size mattresses and gets 37 mpg on the EPA Combined cycle.

There will be those who will mistake the 2012 Scion iQ as some kind of overgrown Smart Fortwo, a vehicle that straddles the line between scooter and automobile. But it's more accurate to think of the iQ as a downsize Toyota Corolla, only liberated from the bits that you don't use very much, like the backseat and the trunk.

The iQ is supposed to fit in with the way that people really live in metropolitan areas. This means a car that is small on the outside and big on the inside. This means a car that's small enough on the outside to feed on leftover scraps of curbside parking even as it's large enough on the inside to offer a full-size experience when it comes to cabin comfort and electronic entertainment.

The 2012 Toyota iQ really isn't like anything else, but you're likely to compare it to other cars for which basic transportation is the prime directive. Among these you'd count the Fiat 500, Ford Fiesta, Honda Fit and Hyundai Accent.

Of these, the 2012 Scion iQ is the smallest and slowest, while its price and fuel-efficiency are comparable.

Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback Overview

The Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback is offered in the following styles: 2dr Hatchback (1.3L 4cyl CVT). The Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: continuously variable-speed automatic. The Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 2 yr./ 25000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback?

Price comparisons for Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback trim styles:

  • The Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback Base is priced between $9,300 and$9,300 with odometer readings between 47000 and47000 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchbacks are available in my area?

Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback Listings and Inventory

There are currently 1 used and CPO 2012 Scion iQ Hatchbacks listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $9,300 and mileage as low as 47000 miles. Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a prew-owned vehicle from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a used or CPO vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2012 Scion iQ Hatchback for sale near you.

Can't find a used 2012 Scion iQ iQ Hatchback you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Scion iQ for sale - 2 great deals out of 5 listings starting at $17,929.

Find a used Scion for sale - 1 great deals out of 18 listings starting at $13,839.

Find a used certified pre-owned Scion iQ for sale - 8 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $9,218.

Find a used certified pre-owned Scion for sale - 3 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $17,837.

Should I lease or buy a 2012 Scion iQ?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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