August 13, 2012
Some of you may remember the 2008 Scion xB we had in the Edmunds long term fleet between 4 and 5 years ago. My wife sure did.
Until now she'd been driving a 2003 Honda Odyssey minivan we'd bought "used" with 672 miles on the clock. She never loved it, but it did the job when the kids were small and the need for three rows of seating was great. For me it was often a better choice than a pickup truck, in that I often used it to haul things like 10-foot lumber and bundles of conduit from Home Depot with the hatch closed and with four seats in full operation.
But a couple of weeks ago its life ended after a coming-together with a nearby palm tree. All I can say about that is AAA auto insurance (ACSC here in SoCal) is outstanding. We received a very fair settlement check under friendly circumstances in a short amount of time.
And so Tracy and I went car shopping, which of course included a trip down memory lane with the long term tests.
October 16, 2008
Something that isn't a big deal to most but that I'm not too keen on on our 2008 Scion xB: the doors sound tinny when slammed shut. You don't get that reassuring solid thunk but one that echos and seems to reverberate the car's frame. I have a Corolla and have been in other Toyotas and Scions before, but this is the first time I've noticed this characteristic. I can't chalk this up to the xB being an economy car as other econocars I've tried before don't sound/feel this cheap. In any case, it makes me wonder what exactly causes it to be like that.
But really, there's nothing like a good door-slamming car.
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor
July 14, 2008
The Scion xB is kind of like the automotive equivalent of the Rorschach inkblot test . Different people see different things when they look at it. This became clear to me after a conversation I had with my neighbor this weekend.
We'd crossed paths in my apartment building's carport. He'd asked about the xB, and I was telling him how roomy its interior is. He described the xB as a "really cool SUV." That threw me. I mean, sure, it makes sense that people would cross-shop the xB against compact SUVs, because it's of a similar size and offers similar amounts of cargo room -- we even published a post that offered some relevant specs for those interested in running comparisons. But I didn't think that people looking at the boxy little Scion would ever actually mistake it for a sport utility vehicle.
When the members of the Edmunds.com data team look at the xB, they see a compact wagon -- that's how this Scion is categorized on the Edmunds site. I mentioned this to my neighbor, and his jaw dropped; clearly, the xB doesn't fit his definition of a wagon. Our data team defines a wagon as "a car with a roof line that extends past the rear doors in addition to having four doors and rear quarter windows." To make the SUV cut, a vehicle needs to have higher ground clearance -- a minimum of 5.7 inches. The xB comes in at 5.1 inches.
Others consider the Scion xB a hatchback. What do you see when you look at the xB?
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor @ 20,545 miles
July 09, 2008
Just about a month ago, James Riswick made it known that the Scion Xb's giant nearly vertical windshield had cracked. It was a dime-sized chip with some spider-webbing that was most likely caused by an errant rock...that or a jealous ex-girlfriend with a ball-peen hammer and limited arm strength.
Recently the Mini Cooper S, which is a loaner from the manufacturer, had its window replaced by the dealer at the fantastic cost of 1,231.67 USD. We own the Xb so we ditched the dealer (who quoted us $1,300) and called Glass Doctor. Not only did they come to us, something the Mini dealer surely did not, but they were done quicker and only charged $443.73.
Mike Magrath, Vehicle Testing Assistant @ 20,000 miles
June 08, 2008
There's plenty to like about the redesigned xB - Toyota knows there's beauty in the details. I like how the Scion logo on each wheel has a sculpted metal look. It doesn't bother me that the center piece is really plastic but I'd be really bummed as a Scion owner if the paint began flaking off that plastic piece with just 19,000 miles on the clock like it is on our car. Every center cap but one on our long termer is doing the same thing to some degree...
Hopefully Scion will replace at no charge.
Brian Moody, Road Test Editor @ 19,863 miles,
June 05, 2008
Oops, there I go again. I mean, the xB has a crack. Like our Mini Cooper's, the Scion xB's upright windshield has become victim of some errant road debris...
This one is more like the Edge's, but it's more of a web-like mini shatter pattern than the Ford's less severe-looking spider-crack. I'm not sure what caused the xB's, it was there when I got in it. We'll add it to our shopping list at Apple Autoglass.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 19,029 miles
April 14, 2008
So last weekend I'm in a parking lot unloading a bike out of the xB when...
A guy in a car clear across the street screams this unsolicited commentary at me:
"Hey, what color is that? Blecht Green?"
I looked at the ugly box, looked back at him and screamed back "Yup, Blecht Green. With orange peel."
It was one of those weekends.
Senior road test editor @ more miles than ast time.
March 28, 2008
Day one of our Arizona Spring Break tour ended with a bang and an expletive. We were travelling North on Loop 101 in Glendale, Az, within 5 miles of our first stop, when a loud "crack" sounding like an over-enthusiastic billiard shot startled the four of us.
A plumber's van a car-length ahead in the next lane had kicked up a stone. There was no avoiding it. I guess now we'll get to see how much a new 2008 Scion xB windshield costs.
March 20, 2008
Don't get me wrong, I dig the boxy dimensions of our Scion xB. Cool look on the outside (I think so, anyway), and lots of passenger room on the inside. But does Scion really need another eccentric-looking box in its lineup? At the New York Auto Show , the manufacturer revealed the concept shown above... It's called the Hako, and word on the street is that it will serve as the inspiration for the model that will replace the tC.
What do you think? Boxy good or boxy bad? Might be time for Scion to explore a few other shapes. Like triangles and circles, maybe. Or possibly octagons.
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor @ 15,192 miles
January 15, 2008
The Scion xB falls into its own little category. Is it a wagon? Not really... Is it a hatchback? Sorta. Is it a crossover SUV? Certainly not. Whatever it is, though, it provides an interesting alternative to all those segments -- especially the latter. Below, I've put the xB against several compact-ish crossovers, plus a midsize pair for fun. I included stats I figured were pretty important to a crossover purchase: maximum cargo volume (behind front seats), combined EPA fuel economy and base price for front-wheel-drive models with the smallest engine available and an automatic. I didn't have 0-60 times for all of them, so I left power out of the equation, but that is certainly a factor to consider.
What would you choose and which of the three criteria I've selected is most important to you?
October 15, 2007
I generally like things that reflect a certain free-spiritedness. Yet, I wasn't a fan of the very individualistic, previous-generation Scion xB (shown above). To my eyes, it was about as attractive as an ambulance.
September 04, 2007
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.