2016 Scion tC Review

Pros & Cons

  • Quick acceleration
  • roomy and reclining rear seats with easy ingress/egress
  • sporty character inside and out
  • lots of standard features.
  • Elevated road noise
  • cheap plastic cabin trim
  • no rearview camera available.
List Price Range
$10,196 - $16,998

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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2016 Scion tC is an appealing entry-level coupe thanks to a roomy cabin, a generous features list and snappy performance.

Vehicle overview

Toyota created the Scion brand to add some pizazz to a corporate image that had become rather stodgy. At this point, it's safe to say that Scion has pretty much achieved its goal, offering a small range of reasonably priced, fashion-forward cars with a lot of room for personalization. The 2016 Scion tC is a two-door, four-seat hatchback coupe that fits right in the middle of the Scion range. While not the snappiest model available — that's the separately reviewed Scion FR-S — it's still a capable coupe with ample appeal.

The Scion tC has been around a while but still has some appealing qualities.

Its sporty looks and fun-to-drive nature may make the headlines, but the 2016 Scion tC's most outstanding feature is what it offers in terms of value. Standard equipment includes Bluetooth, an eight-speaker Pioneer sound system, a 7-inch touchscreen display, 18-inch wheels and a panoramic sunroof:  pretty impressive given the modest price point. And while the Edmunds "B" rated tC doesn't receive the best fuel economy ratings from the EPA (26 mpg combined), we discovered that the EPA number is pretty easy to beat in real-world testing. Furthering the case for the tC are its decent-sized backseat and easily accessible cargo area, as there's both good rear-seat real estate and respectable storage for a coupe.

If the 2016 Scion tC has an Achilles' heel, it's an overall lack of refinement. The interior surfaces seem a bit cheap compared to other offerings, and at highway speeds there's significant road and wind noise. Also, the limited rearward visibility is annoying, especially as Scion doesn't offer a rearview camera for the tC. Moreover, both the suspension tuning and the seats are firmer than they need to be.

Viable alternatives in this segment include the Kia Forte Koup, which is a solid choice thanks to its comfort, performance and value. Also worth test-driving are the funky Hyundai Veloster and the upscale Volkswagen Beetle. The 2016 Honda Civic coupe is certainly one to watch, as Honda appears to be back on its game after a disappointing run in recent years. Overall, the 2016 Scion tC satisfies as an affordable and practical car with some spunk, but we recommend checking around a bit before making your final decision.

2016 Scion tC models

The 2016 Scion tC is a compact, five-passenger hatchback coupe offered in a single trim level.

Standard features include 18-inch alloy wheels, LED front accent lamps, folding side mirrors with LED turn indicators, keyless entry and ignition, air-conditioning, cruise control, full power accessories, a panoramic sunroof with dual manual sunshades, a six-way adjustable (manual) driver seat with height adjustment and one-touch track and seatback angle memory, a leather-wrapped shift knob and tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls, silver interior accents, reclining and folding 60/40-split rear seatbacks, Bluetooth connectivity, a 7-inch touchscreen display, voice controls and an eight-speaker Pioneer sound system with HD radio, Aha smartphone-app integration, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB port.

Standard equipment is very generous on the 2016 Scion tC, including this 7-inch touchscreen interface.

As with other Scions, a wide selection of dealer-sourced accessories is available, including 19-inch wheels, foglights, TRD (Toyota Racing Development) performance parts for the suspension and drivetrain and an upgraded BeSpoke touchscreen audio system with navigation.

2016 Highlights

The 2016 Scion tC gets a new 7-inch touchscreen interface as standard, plus keyless entry and ignition, a rear windshield wiper and minor interior trim upgrades.

Performance & mpg

The front-wheel-drive 2016 Scion tC has a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine that generates 179 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission comes standard, while a six-speed automatic with paddle shifters and automatic rev-matching on downshifts is optional.

During Edmunds performance testing, a Scion tC with a manual transmission went from zero to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds. An automatic did the same sprint in 7.8 seconds. Both are respectably quick times for this class of car.

Whether it's equipped with the manual or automatic transmission, the 2016 tC returns an EPA-estimated 26 mpg combined (23 city/31 highway). In Edmunds testing we found it easy to replicate those numbers, and drivers with a light foot can do considerably better. On our 116-mile mixed-driving evaluation loop, we observed 32.6 mpg.


Standard safety features on the 2016 Scion tC include stability and traction control, antilock brakes, front knee airbags, front side airbags, side curtain airbags and active front headrests. In Edmunds.com brake testing, a tC stopped from 60 mph in 122 feet, an average distance in its class.

In government crash testing, the tC has received five out of five stars for overall crash protection, with four stars for frontal-impact protection and five stars for side-impact protection. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash testing, the tC earned the highest score of "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset impact test as well as the side-impact and roof-strength tests. It earned a second-highest rating of "Acceptable" in small-overlap frontal-offset testing and a "Good" rating for whiplash protection in rear impacts (head restraints and seats).


Though the 179-hp four-cylinder engine in the 2016 Scion tC isn't the most thrilling powertrain in the class, it's got enough power to pull the tC around with some authority. This is the same workhorse motor used in the Camry and other products in the wider Toyota family, but since the tC is relatively small and light, it feels more eager here. If you're up for shifting your own gears, the six-speed manual is smooth and easy to operate. But the more popular automatic is just fine (it even matches revs for you on downshifts) and fuel economy won't suffer, either.

Sporty styling is another point in the 2016 Scion tC's favor.

On the road, the tC may not be particularly exciting compared to the rear-drive FR-S, but well-weighted, precise steering and the car's light-on-its-tires nature make for respectable fun. The ride quality is mediocre, however, as surface irregularities seem to produce more jiggles and vibrations than the norm. Additional drawbacks include excessive tire noise and an incessant exhaust drone that sounds more like a leaf blower than a sporty coupe.


As with the exterior, the 2016 Scion tC's cabin has an overtly sporty look. With its thick, flat-bottom steering wheel, cradling seat bolsters and controls canted toward the driver, the tC strives for a high-performance sports car aesthetic. Unfortunately, the cabin's ambience is sullied a bit by the abundance of cheap plastic trim and thinly padded armrests. Happily, the touchscreen interface is clear and easy to use, and its smartphone integration connects Internet radio, Yelp and other popular social media applications.

From the standpoint of practicality, the tC is a top choice among compact coupes. The rear seats have above-average legroom, and getting in and out of the back is exceptionally easy by two-door standards. The rear seatbacks even recline, a feature typically found in crossover SUVs (and never in this segment). Behind the rear seats the tC can hold up to 14.7 cubic feet of cargo, while folding those seatbacks yields a total of 34.5 cubic feet of space. The hatchback body style also means it's easier to load bulky items in the tC than in traditional coupes like the Kia Forte Koup.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2016 Scion tC.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Great coupe with good features
2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6M)
I bought my 2016 tC in November 2016 and I love it. The car cost a little over $20k and the vehicle comes with some great features at this price point ( push to start button with smart key, 7 inch touchscreen with Bluetooth, amazing stereo, and great torque). I put this car on the road twice and the ride was perfect for going out of town on the highway. The car comes with the same 2.5 L engine as the Camry trims and the cargo space is pretty big for a car this size. Love the push to start button (which is a rare feature on an entry car starting around $20k) and you can lock and unlock the 2016 model with your hand and thumb and never have to take your keys out of your pocket. The car comes with scheduled maintenance for the first 25k miles which is a major plus. The TC is not going to be rebadged as a Toyota and not sure what is going to happen to the residual value but the XB was discontinued last year and they still hold their value pretty well and scion cars are low production so the supply should match the demand in the used market. I plan on keeping it until the odometer clocks 250-300k so resale value isn't a big deal for me. Gas mileage is average but it's still a decent has saver. If you are interested in coupes at an reasonable price but the TC before the conclusion of 2016.
The last Scion
Ws Miller,12/17/2018
Release Series 10.0 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6A)
The Scion tC 10.0 is a good car. Not the fastest car out there but the a/t does well to match what power the engine has.
Chaz was beyond great
Zach Henry,01/11/2017
2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6M)
I came to Charles maund toyota to possibly lease or purchase a car. Not only did i leave with a car but left with a future salesman for my friends and family. You can bet i will be back as well as my family and all my friends. BUY from CHAZZZZZZ

Features & Specs

See all Used 2016 Scion tC features & specs 


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat5 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover10.9%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
  • Roof Strength Test
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2016 Scion tC

Used 2016 Scion tC Overview

The Used 2016 Scion tC is offered in the following submodels: tC Hatchback. Available styles include 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6A), 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6M), Release Series 10.0 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6M), and Release Series 10.0 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 4cyl 6A).

What's a good price on a Used 2016 Scion tC?

Price comparisons for Used 2016 Scion tC trim styles:

  • The Used 2016 Scion tC Base is priced between $10,196 and$15,000 with odometer readings between 42994 and96132 miles.
  • The Used 2016 Scion tC Release Series 10.0 is priced between $16,998 and$16,998 with odometer readings between 53973 and53973 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 2016 Scion tCS are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2016 Scion tC for sale near. There are currently 8 used and CPO 2016 tCS listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $10,196 and mileage as low as 42994 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2016 Scion tC.

Can't find a used 2016 Scion tCs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Scion tC for sale - 11 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $8,263.

Find a used Scion for sale - 11 great deals out of 20 listings starting at $24,556.

Find a used certified pre-owned Scion tC for sale - 5 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $14,990.

Find a used certified pre-owned Scion for sale - 2 great deals out of 18 listings starting at $21,863.

Should I lease or buy a 2016 Scion tC?

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.

Check out Scion lease specials
Check out Scion tC lease specials