Scion iQ

The Scion iQ is only 10 feet long yet seats four people, making it the world’s smallest four-seater.

Instead of sacrificing features or comfort to reduce its footprint, the iQ relies on intelligent design. Six engineering innovations are responsible for the iQ’s ability to be small in size, but large in capability. A compact front-mounted differential, high-mount steering rack with electronic power-steering, and a compact air-conditioning unit all amount to significant decreases in front-end length. In addition, the iQ is equipped with a flat gas tank housed beneath the floor that reduces rear overhang. Slim-back front seats optimize rear legroom, while the “3+1” offset seating arrangement allows one adult to sit behind the front passenger and a child or small package behind the driver.

With a 78.7-inch wheelbase and a unique suspension design – consisting of MacPherson struts up front, and a compact torsion beam rear suspension – the three-door hatchback can deftly maneuver through city traffic. In addition, its overall length of only 120.1-inches, and short front and rear overhangs allows the iQ to fit into virtually any urban parking scenario. Although short in length, the iQ has a wide stance at 66.1-inches, giving it a confident stance that handles like a much larger car.

The 2012 iQ is equipped with a 1.3-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 94 horsepower and 89 lb.-ft of torque. It features the latest dual VVT-i, which allows the engine to be efficient, providing a broader powerband yet requiring less fuel and generating fewer emissions.

The engine is paired with a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that helps deliver smooth acceleration and excellent fuel efficiency. The iQ is rated an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV-II) and achieves an EPA-estimated combined fuel economy rating of 37 miles per gallon, comparable to similar vehicles of its size.

All iQs will come standard with the Star Safety SystemTM, which includes antilock Brakes (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Traction Control (TRAC), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Smart Stop Technology brake-override. A tire-pressure monitoring system is also standard equipment.

The iQ’s profile, defined by a strong and high beltline, glides from the large, stout headlamps, up the A-pillar, across the roof and wraps around the rear, emphasizing the iQ’s geometric shape. Side mirrors with integrated turn signals accent the clean design and give it a premium look.

The iQ’s functional “3+1” seating equates to the world’s smallest four-passenger vehicle. The four-seat configuration is made possible because the driver and frontpassenger seats are slightly off set.

The rear seats are extremely versatile, featuring a 50/50 split and the ability to fold flat, creating enough storage to accommodate large suitcases. The iQ comes standard with a leather-wrapped steering wheel with red stitching, and features a flat bottom that provides additional thigh room. The steering wheel incorporates audio controls to manage the iQ's impressive sound system.

Source: Scion press

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