2011 Scion tC Preview

Highlights

2011 Volkswagen Jetta Photo Gallery
  • New second-generation model
  • New styling inside and out
  • New 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine
  • New 6-speed manual and automatic transmissions
  • New 18-inch wheels and new, larger brakes
  • Arrives in Scion dealerships in fall 2010

Introduction

The Scion tC is a compact 2-door coupe that was originally introduced in 2005. According to the automaker, "tC" stands for "Touring Coupe." Designed to be fun to drive, yet frugal with fuel, the tC featured sporty MacPherson strut suspension up front, and double-wishbone suspension in the rear. All models of the first-generation tC shared the same 2.4-liter 4-cylinder powerplant sending power to the front wheels through a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic transmission. The first-generation tC was Scion's best-selling model, according to the automaker.

New for 2011 is the second-generation Scion tC. Completely redesigned, the new model features a more aggressive appearance, increased performance, and a more premium feel, says the automaker. It is expected in showrooms late in 2010.

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*The information contained in this article was drawn from publicly available sources.

Overview

2011 Scion tC Photo GalleryThe all-new Scion tC boasts design cues borrowed from the Calty-designed Scion FUSE concept, originally shown at the 2006 New York Auto Show. Its fenders are wide and aggressive, amplifying its low stance. The larger front grille is offset by new projector-beam headlamps. In the rear, the taillights (sitting just below the available rear spoiler) have been cleanly integrated into the overall design.

Inside the cabin, the passenger compartment has been lengthened for increased seating room, and versatility is improved with reclining rear seats that split 60/40 to provide more storage capacity. A panoramic moonroof is standard on all models.

The driver sits behind a new 3-spoke steering wheel with a flat, racing-inspired bottom. Front seats feature robust side bolsters to provide secure positioning, yet still offer comfort, says Scion. Making the cockpit more driver-centric, the instrument panel, gauge cluster, and center console all face inward in a V-shape towards the driver.

Under the hood is a new 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine borrowed from the Toyota Camry. Fitted with Toyota's dual VVT-i valve system, the powerplant is rated at 180 horsepower (up 19 horsepower from its predecessor) with an additional 11 lb.-ft. of torque. The engine is equipped with a unique intake manifold system and a sport-tuned exhaust to deliver an aggressive engine and exhaust note, the company says. According to Scion, the new 2.5-liter engine not only delivers more power, but it also earns higher fuel economy while lowering overall emissions.

The transmissions have also been significantly upgraded. The standard gearbox is now a 6-speed manual (replacing the 5-speed manual), while the optional transmission is a 6-speed automatic with sequential-shift capabilities (replacing a 4-speed automatic).

The Scion's new platform carries over the sporty MacPherson strut suspension up front and double-wishbone suspension in the rear, but it has been calibrated to ride lower than the previous model to improve handling, Scion says. The wheels are larger (18-inch alloys) with wider tires that also contribute to improved handling. The size of the disc brakes have increased, and there is a new performance-tuned electronic power-assisted steering system.

*The information contained in this article was drawn from publicly available sources.

Technology

2011 Scion tC Photo GalleryThe 2011 Scion tC is fitted with a new electric power steering system that replaces the traditional belt-driven power steering pump. The advantages of an electric power steering system include the elimination of the traditional belt-drive power steering pump (which uses as much as 10 horsepower under load), a reduction of underhood noise (there are no fluids flowing through hoses and valves), weight reduction, and less complexity (there is one less accessory running off the engine).

Unlike belt-driven power steering pumps, electric power steering systems are managed by computers (a steering sensor detects the position of the steering wheel and then controls the power steering module to alter the effort needed to turn the wheel). This means the steering "feel" and "feedback" can, in some cases, be instantly altered with software adjustments to suit the vehicle's design parameters, driving conditions, or the driver's personal tastes.

The first car with an electric power steering system was the exotic 1990 Acura NSX sports car, but it has taken nearly two decades for the technology to become more widespread.

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*The information contained in this article was drawn from publicly available sources.