2016 Scion iM Preview

Christian Wardlaw | Apr 01, 2015
  • 5-door compact hatchback
  • Built on same platform as Scion tC sport coupe
  • Mono-spec approach to generous equipment list
  • Numerous dealer-installed accessories
  • Free scheduled maintenance for 2 years or 25,000 miles
  • On sale in fall of 2015 for less than $20,000


Aimed at young buyers who want a sporty hatchback on a budget, the new 2016 Scion iM arrives to take the place of the departing Scion xB.

The new iM is a mildly updated version of Europe's Toyota Auris model and shares its platform with the Scion tC sport coupe while using Toyota Corolla mechanical bits.

Scion says the iM goes on sale in September 2015, priced at less than $20,000.

Exterior Features

Scion calls the iM's body "ripped." That is for the car's beholder to decide. It does come with a number of appreciated standard features, though, including automatic headlights, LED running lights, LED taillights, and heated power-folding side mirrors. A set of 17-in. aluminum wheels is also standard, as well as piano black grille and accent trim. Six color choices will be offered.

Interior Features

Inside, the Scion iM features soft-touch materials, layered dashboard design, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and instrumentation that the automaker claims is inspired by sports cars. Standard equipment includes dual-zone automatic climate control, front sport seats, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and a cargo cover.

Optional Features

Mono-spec trim means that any extra-cost options are installed by the dealership. Highlights from the accessories catalog include a navigation system, Toyota Racing Development (TRD) performance and handling enhancements, roof rack system, and other upgrades including several pet-friendly enhancements.

Under the Hood

Scion installs a 137-horsepower, 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine into the new iM, pairing it with a standard 6-speed manual gearbox, hill-start assist technology, and a 4-wheel independent suspension.

The optional continuously variable transmission (CVT) features stepped-shift programming, manual shift capability, and logic that detects lateral g-force in corners and keeps engine revs higher for improved responsiveness when accelerating out of a turn. Drivers can also activate a Sport driving mode that adjusts CVT, electric steering, and throttle response for more lively performance. No mention is made of paddle shifters.

Every new iM will include Scion Boost free scheduled maintenance and roadside assistance for the first 2 years or 25,000 miles of ownership.


Aside from 8 standard air bags and a reversing camera, the Scion iM is free of advanced safety technologies, which helps to keep the price down.


A 6-speaker audio system with a 7-in. display screen is standard equipment, featuring Bluetooth connectivity and streaming audio capability, HD Radio, and Aha global Internet radio. The system can be upgraded with navigation.

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