2014 Scion Touchscreen Audio Infotainment Review

2014 Scion Touchscreen Audio Infotainment Review

2014 scion tc two-door coupe now this is scions other two-door coupe in their lineup it’s been there for a while but it’s also been overshadowed by that rear-wheel drive scion fr-s which is of course the same thing as the Subaru BRZ with a scion logo on it that’s their rear wheel drive two-door coupe that’s been stealing the limelight but let’s check out this original two-door coupe and see if the

2014 refresh makes it something to look at I mentioned the FRS because in many ways that Scion is the direct competitor to this Scion because they’re both sitting there on that same lot and the TC is about $5,000 cheaper so if you come into the scion dealer really wanting an FRS can’t quite afford one you’re probably going to take a long look at this TC just because it’s there on that same

lot there also are not very many inexpensive two-door coupes out on the market anymore we have the Honda Civic of course we have an SI version of that Civic right now aren’t too many others out there in this prime mass-market two-door coupe market however especially not at the low starting prices of the Scion tC and let’s cover those prices right up front only two prices that you need to know nineteen thousand nine hundred sixty-five dollars for the manual transmission version two thousand nine hundred sixty-five dollars for the automatic version the way that science has these cars that is a essentially fixed

price I mean it’s really truly not even though they claim it’s a pure price you can get some discounts under that but most Scion dealers will stick right to that true price pricing scheme now there are a few other options but they’re all essentially aftermarket options so you can get a navigation package for this car you can get a few other things you know better door lock knobs you know an alarm system things like that floor mats trunk mats that sort of thing but those are all aftermarket like accessories so none of them will come on the lot like that without

the dealer configuring them that way so they all come off the truck right like this one here with no options everything is standard on the Scion tC so it’s a lot easier to deal with in some of the competition the 2014 refresh brings some new wheels which we’re going to take a look at in a bit but nothing else on the side view of the Scion tC has changed for 2014 we still have a fairly high beltline and we still have this kink in the bodywork back here that makes rearward visibility just a little bit tricky in the TC outback we get a redesigned rear bumper again with the Scion fr-s styling details this is not a lamp in the US version of the Scion tC other markets do get a fog lamp back there but in America

it’s just blankets just a reflector back here we have some slightly redesigned tail lamps these are basically the same as last year only they’re clear now with red indicators inside the clear plastic under the hood you’ll find a 2.5 liter four-cylinder engine it produces 179 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque those are decent numbers for a car this size and it’s also worth noting that that

torque number is fairly high for an engine like this and a car like this it’s approximately equal to that horsepower number which is an ideal state of affairs if we compare that to that Scion fr-s it produces 200 horsepower from a 2 liter four-cylinder engine but it only produces 151 pound-feet of torque new for
2014 is a six-speed automatic transmission that is optional that bumps your fuel economy for 2014 up to 23 miles per gallon City 31 highway with a combined 26 mile per gallon rating we got for this six-speed manual transmission which is a carryover from last year we get roughly the same fuel economy numbers with a slight reduction in the city we’ve been averaging about 29 miles per gallon in mixed driving with this manual transmission model that we’re testing here just a fairly good number and that’s primarily thanks to the low curb weight of the Scion tC this

ranges from about 3000 82 pounds to just over 3,100 pounds depending on your transmission front seat comfort in the TC is something of a mixed bag and it really depends on what you expect out of your car because there are no options in the Scion tC there’s no power seat option to increase the range of motion of the driver’s seat so you’re left with a single way height adjustable lever right there a single forward backward adjustment right there and a seat recline there’s no lumbar support adjustable in the seat at all it’s really not a whole lot of lumbar
support going on in the Scion tC period of course if you’re the younger buyer that sign is targeting maybe you don’t have back problems but I’m only 30 and my back is hurting me so here we have

a tilt telescoping steering column with a decent range of motion it makes finding a driving position a lot easier but I still have to do the Scion owner manual for the lumbar support trick whenever I’m in the TC admittedly rear seat comfort isn’t the biggest factor in most two-door shoppers Minds however the TC has a decent amount of space back here in the rear see it’s
notably more comfortable than the Scion fr-s and that’s because we get a decent amount more legroom thanks to the overall size of the Scion tC I also have a little bit more Headroom back here

and because all TCS come one way they all come with a sunroof that’s a large sunroof up front and a small glass panel back here for the rear passengers as well rear headroom is a little bit limited back here and it’s shaped a little bit interesting so if I’m sitting back here my head is directly above the glass my hair is not touching anything if I’m sitting all the way back in
my seat but you don’t get a whole lot of view out of these very small rear windows if I scoot over to the left side of the car you can see that I have a decent amount of legroom left I have about two inches of legroom left and this front seats adjusted for me at 6 feet tall in a somewhat reclined driving position so you can easily fit four or six foot tall adults in the scientist II and go for lunch

these are your passengers aren’t gonna be all that happy with you but you can do it now there’s also a fifth seat in the Scion tC which is an interesting twist
but you have to be very small and very skinny to fit back here in this middle seat the seats in the TC all come one way there all these fabric seats nearly identical for the driver and the front passenger the front passenger is just not height adjustable we have hard plastic door panels hard plastic dash panels as well here we have a fairly large glovebox you can see it has a decent amount of storage room there up here in the ceiling you’ll find again that two panel sunroof one panel up here for the front passengers one panel up there for the rear passengers the

dashboard plastics remind me an awful lot of the Toyota Prius has a very similar texture going on there and it is hard plastic to large air vents they’re going down all Scion tC models come standard with this touch screen LCD infotainment system this is a pioneer unit so if you’re familiar with Toyota nav systems or infotainment systems and forget everything you know Scion is nothing like that this is standard but navigation is not standard so if you hit that map button you get a little message there saying that bespoke premium audio is not installed it is
a $1,200 option and includes app integration as well as that mapping software single zone manual climate control down here we’ll find our USB and auxiliary input system did work fairly well with

our eye devices and has enough power to charge Hydra devices back here we have a single power port and again ours is the manual transmission model so we have the six-speed stick right there two large cup holders right here in the
center console next to the hand parking brake easily accommodate these large takeout style cups center armrest is fairly decently sized it’s not terribly deep but it is a decent size for a car like this the armrest does not adjust forward and backward or for height the TC gets a three dial instrument cluster that is orange backlit day and night and if we zoom out we have the new Scion steering

wheel with a flat bottom perforated sides and standard leather top we get our audio buttons right here on the steering wheel and our cruise control is on a little stock
just like you’d find in most Toyota models this is a great steering wheel to hold it has a very nice feel to them very well positioned and very good feeling sport grips as well all TCS have standard power mirrors standard power door locks as well as standard power windows the driver’s window gets an auto down feature one thing that I need to point out that was slightly disappointing is some of the build quality in the Scion tC
or perhaps its design quality but if you take a look at this you can see that when you press on this door armrest here that this gap enlarge is quite a bit and I find myself needing to push up off door

armrest a decent amount in the tsiyon TC just because of the way the seat is shaped I feel myself slipping down an awful lot so you have to sort of use your elbow to lift yourself up in your seat and rearrange yourself as you can
see there’s a decent amount of motion there in that armrest and it increases that panel gap something that’s not very attractive the TCC continues to score eight out of ten points in our exclusive

truck comfort index because the cargo area is larger than you might think this is of course a hatchback which makes the cargo area a bit more efficient than a sedan but it’s also obviously been designed around these large roller bags this is the largest roller bag you can carry on a domestic flight you can fit four of them back here fairly easily and you can see that the cargo area was really designed with these bags specifically in mind we also have a doughnut spare tire right here under the cargo
hatch and the handle that makes closing the lid a lot easier whether you’re inside or outside the trunk let’s take the briefest of looks at infotainment if you don’t care about it then just skip on ahead

to the drive section review by following those instructions at the bottom of your screen and we’ll back up with you they’re all Scion tC s have this doubled in touchscreen head unit for 2014 this is a change in 2013 where there was a non touchscreen head unit available as well Scion is all about customization and easy replacement of audio systems that’s why
this is still following a standard double din format you’ll notice that the plastics don’t really match anything else in the car it’s because it is a Pioneer stereo this is made especially for Scion but it’s not related directly to any of the other Toyota or Scion radio systems that you’ve seen in the past so they Scion iQ for instance it’s touchscreen radio unit with the nav system is more closely related

to the Toyota nav
units that you’d expect in something like a toda Camry or something along those lines this is a entirely different unit it means it’s also easier to replace this because it uses industry standard sizing it’s not that it’s not an off signs like you’d find in certain other vehicles and the connectors in the back our standard pioneer connectors we are told this unit offers FM AM HD radios you can see by that little logo right there and right now we’re listening to HD radio there it also has a fully featured iPod and Bluetooth interface the interface for changing
your devices is quite unique compared to other toda products you scroll through your screens this way and now we’re on our iPod you can hit your songs button and this will show you what’s in

your current playlist browse up here to browse your media device you can browse by playlists artists albums genres etc very easy to navigate around in it’s also very snappy and very responsive back over on the source button we have a fully featured Bluetooth interface as well you do have certain access to tracks on your Bluetooth device which is a unique feature with this
touch screen Ian you don’t really find that very often in many touchscreen head units the ability to select tracks via the Bluetooth interface there is also a limited ability to browse it’s not quite the same as you’d find in that connector but it’s fairly close that operates well with every Bluetooth device that we’ve tested it with we’ve tested it with USB sticks as well Apple iOS devices over here on

the setup screen you’ll find your usual Bluetooth phone audio system etc mapping is an optional extra on the system it’s just a software option that’s added to this
same head unit so nothing really here changes we get the map button whether we have navigation or not that is a $1,200 option which is fairly pricey but it does bring certain smartphone app integration into this radio we haven’t really seen exactly what that looks like because there hasn’t been one with the bespoke audio and mapping system together for us to test so you have to get back with us when we can get our hands on one and see what that looks like over here on the audio button takes you right back to the audio source that you’re currently playing the voice

command button right up here is specifically for the phone interface which is also accessible via that little phone icon right there connect phones fairly self-explanatory speed dials call history and of course we have contacts over there the Scion tC is an awful lot of fun to drive out on the road and it’s kind of a Goldilocks car it lands right in the middle of a lot of the competition so in terms of performance body roll overall handling ability etcetera it lands right between the Honda Civic Si and the regular Honda Civic Coupe I would place this between the
Scion fr-s on the top end and the Hyundai Elantra coupe on the low end it’s definitely more engaging to drive than the current Kia Forte Koup although there is a new one coming out very soon in

terms of hard numbers we ran from zero to 60 and seven point four to seven point six seconds in the TC depending on how we drove the manual transmission again that lands this right in the middle with the FRS and the Civic Si being faster at the regular Civic and the Hyundai Elantra being slower now most buyers will be buying this car with the automatic transmission so that’s something to keep in mind in terms of the automatic transmission numbers they are fairly close to these manual transmission numbers
thanks to that brand new 6-speed automatic with throttle matching down shifts out of these winding Mountain Road science tweaks for 2014 are definitely noticeable the TC is more engaging to drive than it was last year the tweaked the electric power steering of course it still has electric power steering so it’s not going to be as engaging as a hydraulic power steering unit but everybody’s

going to these electric units so it really doesn’t matter that much now this is still a front-wheel drive car and a 2.5 liter engine under the hood means that there is still a decent amount of weight up there versus something like a scion fr-s however one thing you need to keep in mind is that this car has those fairly
wide 225 with tires versus the 215 s in the Scion fr-s the Scion fr-s uses low rolling resistance rubber and the TC does not so when it comes to absolute numbers on the skid pad for instance the TC scores only slightly behind the FRS it’s about 0.8 6 G’s instead of 0.8 8 G’s in the Scion fr-s and that’s something really incredible to keep in mind because the FRS is a rear-wheel drive cars that

just tells you how good this TC is out on the road the Civic Si is more dynamic out on the road without question the suspension is a little bit stiffer it’s a little bit more direct steering is a little bit more direct the shifter feel is superior to the Scion tC and it has a limited slip differential which really helps you engage all those 200 horses in a front-wheel drive car the six-speed manual shifter in the TC is not reverie but it’s not as
engaging as the Honda Civic Si or the Scion fr-s either the TC is 2.5 liter 4-cylinder engine is very torquey and that’s obvious out on these winding mountain roads where you don’t have to downshift as frequently as you would in something like the Scion fr-s the FRS has about 20-something pound-feet less torque than the TC and that’s very obvious out on these winding roads where

you constantly have to downshift the FRS more than you do the TC I find myself in the FRS constantly wishing it had more power it’s undeniably more fun more dynamic and better in most
every metric than the Scion tC just because of its reveal drive nature the way that tota has tuned it and designed it and of course the fact that the engine produces more horsepower but in terms of real-world drivability the TC is a lot easier to drive and a lot easier to live with – that’s the prime difference between the TC and the FRS is that the FRS is very much a track car everything was tuned to be perfect and feel good out on the track that’s part of why those low rolling since tyres are in the FRS as well because if you have those low-rolling-resistance tires even with 200

horsepower under the hood you can get a decent amount of rear tail action out on the road and that’s something that you can’t get in the Scion tC the TC will never get tail-happy on you the tail will never feel light like you would get in a sign FRS you’re never going to get any rear-end rotation out on the track and that is definitely something you get an awful lot of in the Scion fr-s the TC scored

high marks in our fuel economy tests averaging twenty nine point two miles per gallon over approximately 600 miles of driving it like we stole it those numbers are especially surprising when you consider how low the gearing is in the TC in sixth gear at seventy miles an hour the engine spinning nearly 3,000 rpm so a seventh gear or taller sixth gear would probably improve fuel economy that’s likely why the automatic receives approximately similar numbers in terms of fuel economy to this manual transmission version because it’s gearing is just a little bit higher it doesn’t really

provide too much of a drivability difference out on the road the 6-speed automatic is a fairly competent transmission and the Rev
match down shifts make it an awful lot more engaging than the 5-speed that you’ll find in the Honda Civic Si that is kind of the unusual twist with the Scion tC in that the Civic Si is the better performing vehicle if you buy them with a manual transmission but if you buy them with an automatic like most shoppers will then I almost think that the TC is the better Buy and the better choice

it has a better transmission and that’s something that most people will care about out on the road because that’s something that they interact with every time they drive the car and the Honda five-speed automatic shifts are just a little bit lazy just a little bit slow and of course it’s only a 5-speed versus a 6 D
transmission if you opt for the manual transmission then there’s no question the Civic Si is going to be the more engaging car to drive and an important thing to keep in mind is that even in that five-speed automatic transmission with the Civic Si you still get the limited slip front differential which helps you apply that power more easily than the Scion tC the TC ends up being my Goldilocks of two-door economy coupes for a very important reason it successfully rides the line right down the middle in terms of handling performance feature content etc between the TC

and its competition but it also does so at a very good price just under $20,000 for the manual transmission just over $20,000 for the automatic transmission with no options and no upgrades available to be you know swindled out of at the dealership the TC is a very good price for what you get it’s cheaper than that Civic Si better performing than the regular Civic it’s a $5,000 discount over that Scion fr-s I really like the way the Scion fr-s performs in the way that it handles and feels on the road and I could probably afford one but if I was at the dealer a lot I might be tempted to go for the Scion tC just because it’s a good value and I’m kind of a cheap bastard after a week in the Scion tC it
surprised me more than I thought it would science to coop strategy is already a little bit interesting having both a rear-wheel drive and a front-wheel drive coupe in their lineup but the TC is

pricing it’s about five thousand dollars cheaper than that Scion fr-s and it handles almost as well even though it’s a front-wheel drive car obviously the dynamics are very different from that Scion fr-s but in stock form out on the track you pull almost as many G’s on the skid pad in this front-wheel drive Scion tC as you do in the rear wheel drive Scion fr-s that has to do with a number of different choices that Scion made including smaller tires in the FRS low-rolling-resistance tires in the FRS and wider
tires in grippy rubber over here in the Scion tC now the balance is admittedly all wrong in the Scion tC for sports car driving I mean it has a front wheel drive layout it’s a front heavy compared to that Scion fr-s and the FRS is very well balanced not something that’s happening on here in the TC but even so the TC does very well for itself out on the track it’s quite a joy to drive and I would

call it a decent value as well because that FRS is 25% more expensive than the TC but I don’t think it’s 25% more fun compared to the other players in the segment the TC holds its own very well compared to the Civic s I think the Civic handles just a little bit better but I prefer the way the TC looks and I also prefer the way the TC is priced versus that Honda Civic Si coupe versus the Honda Elantra and of course that kia forte koup which is coming up
and we haven’t seen it yet the Elantra doesn’t handle as well obviously it feels like a way noodle out on the road especially in comparison with the Scion tC even compared to the Kia Forte out there that Honda Elantra coupe just doesn’t have the same Road feel I expect good things out of the kia forte koup after having driven the 2013 Kia Forte sedan if I don’t expect it to quite equal this Scion tC again I’m Alex dykes and that’s been our quick look at the 2014

 

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