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Scion xB Test Drive - What Did You Think?

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Comments

  • geekaygeekay Posts: 51
    Hi Hondacivic, I am 50, we bought our Xb in Apr 2004. I say we because everyone in the family loves to drive it because of economy and practicality. Result, 28000 miles, the average has consistently been above 33 mpg and has had no visit to the dealership, (we do our own oil changes and other top ups). It is no dog either (we have a 5 speed) and I think it has adequate power. We have a Honda civic hybrid, a Honda CRX, a Pontiac Vibe and an Infiniti G356MT.Needless to say, the Xb and the Vibe are driven more then even the Hybrid. Happy motoring
  • After reading all the info here and elsewhere on the net, I was really looking forward to test driving this car. It met all the specs we were wanting...most important being good MPG, utility, and price.
    The drive was a big let down. We have driven 4 cyclinder cars for 10 years, but the other 4-bangers have never sounded so loud(unrefined?) and felt so sluggish. The road feel was very vague and the ride was rough. Best part of the car is the very open and spacious interior. I was really hoping this would be the replacement for our gas guzzling Tundra which is my daily driver.
  • I have driven 4-cylinders for 35 years - 2 Rabbits, 2 Toyotas, 2 BMW 2002s, and 1 Mazda. I got a 2006 xB 5-speed 5,000 miles ago, and am so pleased with its quality, power, smooth clutch and shifter, fuel economy and excellent handling. But those are not what first attracted me - it was the easy entry and room for my 6'-2" height.

    It is important to change the rear shocks from the oddly stiff OEM KYBs to smoother SensaTracs made by Tenneco and sold by NAPA and Monroe. The SensaTracs are only $75/pair, and the change takes less than 30 minutes in the driveway with no jacking.
  • I test drove the xB yesterday and liked the car overall. I was suprised though about the small luggage space. If you have two kids, the xB is not the car you want.

    The front seats felt cheap and uncomfortable - so I bet it's no fun to drive this car over long distances.

    We ended up buying the 5-cyl 150hp Volkswagen Rabbit, which has more cargo space than the xB and you really can't beat the feel of solidness and crispness of a German car. It was cheaper, too. Sorry, but Toyota didn't make the cut. I guess one unpleasant experience about Toyota was also the arrogant sales people, who really did not care about my business. Good luck to all of you finding the right fit for wallet and meeting all your needs!
  • "... ended up buying the 5-cyl 150hp Volkswagen Rabbit... It was cheaper..."

    A 5-speed xB has an MSRP of $14,600 to which is added delivery/prep of $500, dealer fees, and tax.
    A 4-door Rabbit has an MSRP of $17,000 to which is added delivery/prep of $600 plus the rest.
    If the Rabbit is cheaper, it must be because the dealer is discounting the price by $2,500.
    Is that possible?
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    I went with my daughter for an xB test drive the other day. She is looking at the Mazda3 and Civic EX and I pushed her into the Scion dealership to look at the xB. Why? I love the look, great mileage, cheaper to own and insure (she is mid 20's and single).

    Likes: I love the style, we loved the room inside, except as others noted the space behind the rear seats. If you can't fold them because of passengers you will not carry much back there. Seemed to be typical Toyota quality which is good. Cheap price. Pretty good OEM stereo with MP3 and aux in jack included. Rode fairly well. Handled decent. All in all, a lot of car for the money. I found the seats to be very comfy, but our test drive was only 45 minutes or so. Gobs of head room (wear a cowboy hat while you drive?), good shoulder room, lots of leg room. Back seat super for 2, tight for 3. Low beam headlights are super - see what happens when you have a large, flat lens?

    Dislikes: No cruise even as an option, cheapest wheel option is $669, no moonroof option, no side air bags (and gets so-so side impact ratings), 4 speed auto hunts a LOT at freeway speed. Way too much engine noise with OEM exhaust - if you want loud you could add it, OEM should be quieter. Seriously needs more power, but we knew that before we drove it. No interior lights except the one way back from the driver. Needs map lights, mirror lights or something. It is a cheap car and some bits show it - vanity mirrors, etc.

    Scion experience:

    The fixed price thing is OK, but they make a big deal out of "true price" or whatever then you find out they stick you with another $250-300 or more in "dealer fees" above MSRP. Seems like that is wrong on a fixed price car. Options from the dealer are expensive (and they say they don't negotiate them either) - you can find all the goodies at discount online stores for a lot less and install MOST of them yourself. Stereo stuff is way overpriced. Even tier one finance rates are higher than other sources. The folks we talk to and worked with that were Scion "specialists" were very nice and well informed, get a "Toyota" salesperson and they are little help. I don't care for one price cars, but in this case they are hard to get (around here) so having one price means they don't over-charge you. That also tends to keep resale high (along with the hard to get). The price difference between the xB and other cars is less than you think if you factor in many others can be had for invoice or less or maybe a little over - while you are stuck paying MSRP at Scion. That said, we didn't find anything at THIS price that we would rather have - only something that costs MORE was better.

    In the end, my daughter has decided that the other cars are just nicer - and they are - and she can afford them so she is willing to pay more for a nicer ride. Probably will not get as good gas mileage and will pay more for insurance, and if she needs to haul stuff she will have to get me to bring the pickup over :D

    I would have had no problem with her getting it, and if one of my other kids wanted one I would feel the same way.

    Too bad the xB run ends this year. We don't know yet if the replacement will be a better xB of something completely different when we get it next year (as a 2008). But I love the style and love the how you see so few on the road. Would *I* drive one? Probably not, way too little power for me (even with manual) but I have an RX-8 and an S-2000.

    Dennis
  • It will be very soon that you'll rue the day that you bought the 5-cyl 150hp Volkswagen Rabbit. Wait a few months until the recurrent electrical problems start to surface. The only reliable VW is the diesel made in Europe. That statement came from a VW service manager who commented on my friend's diesel Golf. He said all of them seem to have issues but the diesel. So while your 5-cyl 150hp Volkswagen Rabbit is sitting in the shop for one of many mysterious problems, I'll be cruising around in my XB with zero problems. Why would anyone buy a gasoline German plague car? I've put 49k trouble free miles on my car. I know that you'll not be able to make that claim. Hail Scion!!
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    That may be a LITTLE harsh, but VW is for sure not in the same class as Toyota/Scion, Honda, or even Nissan in terms of reliability.

    I had one of the original pocket-rocket econobox cars - a new '83 Rabbit GTI. I had few troubles with mine but the resale value was bad. I traded it for a 89 Civic Si which was a much better car - and retained a ton more value when it was time to sell or trade it.

    The prior VW car, the Golf has a pretty terrible track record. So the "good news" is the Rabbit is new - the bad news is if they couldn't get it right during the Golf run do we expect they can make the Rabbit BETTER for 05? I hope so, but I would not bet my money on it.

    I can understand why someone would want more power or a different look, but the VW shop would not be MY first stop (or second or third).

    With the xB going away at the end of this year, the resale on xB's (which is already strong) should stay that way.

    Dennis
  • "... Dislikes: No cruise even as an option... no moonroof option... Way too much engine noise with OEM exhaust..."

    Cruise can be bought through the dealer. I bought mine online, and had it installed by the place the dealer used.
    Likewise the moonroof. I went to the shop that the dealers use, and had a Webasto moonroof installed.
    I have 8,000 miles on a manual transmission, which revs higher than the auto, and just completed a 2,500 mile trip. I have not thought the engine noise or exhaust is too loud. I like the faint sounds they make.
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    The dealer told me there was no OEM cruise, just aftermarket. I think they got $300-400 for that. $1300 or so for a moonroof. Add those two things at those prices to the price of the xB at full MSRP and you have about the price you could negotiate on something like a Civic EX or Mazda3. Compared to those cars, the noise is really high and the 4 speed auto really hunts for the right gear on the freeway (a problem you and I would not have driving stick, but my daughter wants an auto).

    As I said, I love the xB but it does have some issues - but is a heck or a bargain as it sits.

    Dennis
  • TRUELY and sincerely sorry to interrupt this discussion, but can someone tell me where the he** the 'New Post' button is on this forum? I registered twice now and each time clicked the confirmation email I received to complete the registration, then returned to the forum and sign in, but there is no 'New Post' button ANYWHERE!!!! Please help, I'm going to pull what little hair I have left out. Thanks in advance folks.

    Jim
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    Right below this message is a post a message box. You type in the subject you want and the message and submit it.

    Dennis
  • Considering purchasing an 06 Acura MDX this weekend. I see here on the Edmunds.com 'Incentives & Rebates' page that there is currently a $2500 Manufacturer to Dealer 'Marketing Support' incentive for this vehicle. Does this literally mean if I go in today and buy an MXD, the dealer will get some kind of $2500 credit from the manufacturer? If so, then I assume having this information means I could potentially negotiate a lower price, knowing the dealer is going to make an additional $2500 from the manufacturer directly.

    I don't know how to use this information to my advantage during price negotiations or whether it's actually even a valid point to bring up and attempt to negotiate a lower price based on.

    Not totally understanding what exactly this means or whether the dealer I go to participates and actually gets this credit, I guess I'm concerned about trying to use this information to leverage a lower price only to find out this Man. to Dealer incentive doesn't apply to them. Also concerned about them simply SAYING this incentive doesn't apply to them when they actually WILL get the credit.

    Thanks for any advice, it is appreciated.
    Jim
  • Thanks Dennis, but I still seem to be missing something... I want to post a NEW question and have the Title appear out on the main 'Car Shopping Groups & Discussions' index page. When I use the message box you point out below, it seems to only add my post to the current thread 'Scion xB Test Drive - What Did You Think?'.

    Jim
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    Try clicking this link.

    That should take you to the Acura MDX prices paid & buying experience forum. Then read through those messages and perhaps pose your question there.

    To give an answer (I am not in the MDX market) - in general when Edmunds shows factory to dealer money it is something "we" don't know about nor is it advertised. unlike a rebate where you get money back or the car maker runs ads for it, this is "secret" money to help the dealer move product they are having trouble selling. Knowing that there is marketing assistance or dealer money means you know you can get a better deal.

    For example, the "generous" dealer offers you a new MDX for $500 over dealer cost. Sounds great doesn't it? They may even pull out the ACTUAL INVOICE to show you. But being a smart shopper, you see on Edmunds the dealer is getting $2,500 in help from Acura to move the MDX. WHOA! They are making $3k on this deal and not $500. That is a LOT more negotiating room for you. Of course, the dealer may start out at $500 over invoice less the $2,500 and save you the haggling - but at least you will know what is up. If they will not deal lower, then ask them about the marketing assistance money and tell them you need a lower price. One problem with high-end cars is that a) rich folks tend to be poor negotiators and often over pay and b) there may only be one dealer for that brand in the area so they have no competition.

    Dennis
  • Great. Thanks so much for the information Dennis. Have a good weekend.

    Jim
  • The cruise is made by Rostra, and is installed at the port if you order the car that way. Or the dealer can order it and send the car to a local installer. Or you can buy it online and take the car to the installer. The Rostra was $200 and installation was $150. Rostra is the cruise control mfr for many automakers that offer cruise an an OEM option.

    Within a few months I had foglights, cruise, moonroof and leather seats installed on my xB, totalling about $3,000. I could have had several other excellent basic cars for what I have in the xB. But they would not have been an xB with foglights, cruise, moonroof and leather seats. And then it would take another $3,000 to add all that stuff to the other cars. And for $6,000 more than an xB, I could have had a whole 'nother range of great basic cars to chose from. But probably still not with moonroof and leather.

    However, I wanted an xB for a year, and waited a month after ordering, because I did not want to bend and stoop to get into a car, and no other car offers that at any price. Only after getting the xB did I realize how much I would really like so many other things about the car.
  • Hello all,

    I really like the scion xb but I have one problem. I test drove an Xb and noticed a buring smell eminating from under the hood, inside the back seat and from the outside rear end. The dealer told me it will burn off in a few miles.

    Anyone hear about this?

    Thanks!
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    To me it did not smell like burning at all, and I really miss it. You only get to smell it for the first day, or maybe two if you have a garage to capture it better. After that you will have to wait until your next new car. It is the volatiles cooking out of the various sealants, gaskets, paints and coatings used in the manufacture of the engine and exhaust system. It's the exterior component of "new car smell".
  • dwynnedwynne Posts: 4,018
    Sounds like you were lucky enough to drive a new xB :)

    We drove one of the rental fleet and it had 0 burning smell. As was mentioned this can be very typical for a new, no mile car and is often caused by the engine, exhaust manifold, header, pipes, catalytic converted, and muffler all heating up and burning off any coating or sealant.

    I would not worry about it - if you like the car, get it!

    Dennis
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