New Car Review: 2005 Scion tC

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2005 Scion tC Fun for all

By Mark Fulmer

Forget what you read about Scions being for Generation X, Y, or Whatever. Half of the xA's and xB's sold in America are to middle-aged folks, and so it shall be with the new sporty coupe, the tC. Useful, cost-effective and entertaining vehicles simply glide across demographic niches.

The tC is powered by 2.4-liter inline Camry four-cylinder producing 160 hp and 163 lb-ft of torque. A silky five-speed manual gearbox is standard, with a four-speed automatic available as an option. Both have enjoyable torques available at the low and mid ranges of the powerband. Fuel economy is estimated at 22 mpg city and 29 mpg highway with the manual, and 23 city and 30 highway with the optional automatic. The suspension achieves excellent balance: good clean firm cornering with reponsive feedback and at the same time buffering bumps and grooves of the road. .

Like the other Scions, the tC comes in one trim level and is chock-full of unexpected goodies such as one-touch up-and-down power windows, cruise control, air conditioning, keyless entry, mirror-mounted turn signal lights, four-wheel antilock disc brakes and a 160-watt Pioneer sound system with CD player that is (XM) satellite radio-ready. Just below where the volume knob should be (unfortunately currently buttons) you will find the SSB button: one click for normal eq, click again for HEAR, and click again for FEEL which then puts you into the thumpin', butt-shaking bass eq - (which works best with big band jazz). Options include: a side airbag package, a CD changer, satellite radio, a subwoofer and a lighting kit for the footwell, just to name a few. .

As a hatchbacked coupe, the tC has remarkable cargo capacity. Folding down the rear seats and the right front seat, you'll get a full 103.6 inches. That's 12.8 cubic feet with the rear seats and a very useful 60 cubic feet in full flat mode...

The tC
. Useful.
. Cost-effective.
. Entertaining.
. An unqualified hit in the making.

The Specs

Engine: Double overhead cam (DOHC) 16-valve VVT-i 4-cylinder
Displacement: 2.4 liters Bore x stroke 88.5mm X 96mm
Compression ratio: 9.6:1
Valvetrain: Double overhead cam(DOHC)16-valve with Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i)
Induction system Multi-port EFI Ignition system Electronic with Direct Ignition System (DIS)
Horsepower: 160 hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 163 lb.-ft. @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission: 5-speed manual overdrive Standard 4-speed electronically controlled transmission (ECT)
Available Suspension: Front MacPherson strut
Rear Double wishbone suspension
Steering: Power assisted rack-and-pinion steering
Turning Circle: 36.1 ft.
Brakes: Power-assisted 4-wheel disk with Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS)
Exterior Dimensions(inches): Overall height 55.7
Overall width 69.1
Overall length 174.0
Wheelbase: 106.3 Track (front/rear) 59.3/59.3
Ground clearance: 5.2
Interior Dimensions: Front/Rear (inches) Head Room 37.6/36.6
Shoulder Room 54.3/50.0
Hip Room 53.2/47.3
Leg Room 41.6/33.6
Passenger Volume(cu.ft.): 84.7
Cargo Volume(cu.ft.): 12.8
Seating Capacity: 5
Weights and Capacities:Curb Weight(lbs.) 2,905/2,970 (manual/automatic)
Fuel Tank:14.5 Gallons
Tires: P215/45ZR17 (All Season) Spare Temporary
Mileage Estimates: (MPG City / Highway) Manual 22/29 Automatic 23/30

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Complete specifications on these and other vehicles are available at the New Car Buyers Guide!

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