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2013 Scion xD Overview
The stubby little Scion xD, aimed at young drivers who crave flash but have no cash, returns this year with little fanfare. The quirky carmaker has had its share of hits, but the xD was not one of them; Scion recently announced this would be its last year in production.
This sporty compact hatchback does have some good things going for it, in terms of features and price point against its competitors, including the Fit and the Fiesta. It has a standard 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine making 128 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque. That’s not a whole heckuva lot, but plenty for its size. It can be paired with either a 5-speed manual transmission or an optional 4-speed automatic. EPA estimates are okay, at 27 mpg city/33 highway, but more akin to those of a midsize car.
The xD comes in a single Base trim with a host of available options to tweak it. Standard features are impressive and include Bluetooth integration, keyless entry, and power windows. From there, options include a rear spoiler, mudguards, cargo net and premium sound system. The xD is fitted with 16-inch wheels, but 18-inchers are available, along with a variety of attractive rims.
On the outside, the xD's upright stance and squished front and rear give it a distinct if not remarkable silhouette. New this year is the option for two-tone paint on the exterior.
Interior-wise, there is not a lot of headroom in the back seat. Folded down that back seat allows for only 35.7 cubic feet of storage, but there is an additional compartment for small items below the cargo floor. The economical dash design cleverly uses a single circular gauge for tachometer and speedometer. Overall, the cabin is tasteful, and there are plenty of nooks and crannies (including an upper and lower glovebox) for personal stuff.
And the xD is fun to drive, especially with the manual and optional sport shocks and tuning. It loses points for a cumbersome turning radius, the inability to raise or lower the driver’s seat and the lack of a telescoping steering wheel. Still, if you are average height and weight, you should have no problems with the xD.
Safety features include electronic stability control (now standard for all U.S. vehicles), antilock brakes and larger side-impact airbags.
Compared to the newest Scions, like the quirky, tiny iQ or the sporty FR-S, the xD seems downright old-fashioned. No wonder it’s being put out to pasture.
by Stephen Moramarco
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